In Egypt, a Belgian model was sent to jail after her nude photoshoot inside a temple has lent her naked body to raise money towards saving wild animals in Africa.
The model, named Marisa Papen, take of her clothes to raise awareness of the decline in exotic species in wildlife parks in the Democratic Republic of Congo, posing with fake animals for a calendar.
She took part in the shoot just months after a naked photo session inside in a temple complex in Luxor, in Egypt saw her spending a night in a prison cell.
Activism: Marisa Papen poses in the Democratic Republic of the Congo next to a digitally enhanced plastic rhino toy
Ms Papen said: ‘In Congo they do not promote safaris like they do for example in South Africa.
‘The government does not care very much what happens with the flora and fauna, as there is little profit to be made out of it.’
So, she teamed up Robert Muir for her 2018 nude calendar. Robert Muir, is a British biologist and CEO of Forgotten Parks Foundation, an organisation which protects wildlife and tries to enhance the management of ‘forgotten’ National Parks in partnership with governments and local communities.
Ms Papen said: ‘For hundreds and thousands of years these African Savannahs were overflowing with wildlife. However, thanks to man’s destructive ways, these animals are completely disappearing.’
In the two parks where Ms Papen is pictured, Upemba and Kundelungu, the animal population is in steep decline.
Fake news: The lion next to her, as well as all animals in the calendar the animals, is in fact a plastic miniature, snapped separately and enlarged in Photoshop
Good work: Papen hopes to raise awareness of the decline in exotic species in the Democratic Republic of Congo with her charity nude calendar
Ms Papen and German photographer Uwe Ommer snaps miniature animals in Congo
The park saw the last lion in 1973, and the last rhinoceros in 1954, all thanks to deforestation, poaching and climate change.
An original population of thousands of elephants are now down to just 180.
The lack of animals had a huge effect on the ecosystem, and it also created problems for Ms Papen and 75-year-old German photographer Uwe Ommer.
They initially planned to snap pictures of MS Papen walking nude near some wildlife, but in ten days they only encountered one baboon.
Ms Papen said: ‘Because we did not encounter wildlife, we had to use our creativity.
Risky: Ms Papen became the centre of a worldwide controversy when she was sent to prison for a photoshoot in the temple complex of Karnak near the Egyptian city of Luxor
‘One of the concepts was to photograph miniature animals in the same landscape. I posed with the thought that the three-centimetre figure was in reality a life-size animal.’
In some pictures, Papen and Ommer took the help of digital to enlarge the animal figures to resemble real wildlife.
The model said she was particularly impressed by the energy of 75-year-old Ommer, with whom she spent two weeks camping without any comfort whatsoever.
Papen said: ‘Him and me together were an interesting combination, creating a grandpa-grandchild look and feel.’
Once in Congo, the logistics were however challenging, as driving just 40 miles can easily take eight hours because of the muddy roads.
Jailed: Ms Papen is seen in one of the snaps taken in Egypt that saw her jailed
The Belgian nude model describes herself as a free-spirited and wildhearted expressionist
The model, from the Flanders region of Belgium, is known for her naked shoots
The photoshoot didn’t went without problems, as Papen even suffered a heatstroke as well as a sprained ankle when walking downhill in the high savannah grass.
Papen said: ‘When I’m in the nature and I can walk around nude, I’m in my element. But on the third day I got sunstroke, which is weird because I always put on enough anti-sunburn cream and wear a hat.
‘The next day I wasn’t really aware what was going on, I think I slept for 24 hours straight.’
Papen said she always gets fresh inspiration from ‘nature and animals’ and explained that walking nude is a great way for her to raise awareness and tell tales about faraway cultures and the wonders of the world.
She said that she talked for hours with Robert Muir about Forgotten Parks Foundation and could see with her own eyes how new rangers are being trained and how local kids are being taught in schools.
Papen said: ‘I am 100 percent that the money raised will be wisely spent by Forgotten Parks.’