We’ve been fascinated with the shape of the body since ancient Greece and before, although the ideal body image has been continually changing. Perhaps that’s one of the reasons why Howard Schatz’s Athlete series is so striking – it taps into the same focus on physical, athletic body type beauty that ancient Greek sculptures and modern advertisements do.

In Athlete, Schatz explores many different variations of famous athletes’ body shapes. We get to see bodybuilders with rippling muscles, bone-thin marathon runners, towering long-jumpers, and massive wrestlers – all in a side-by-side comparison. They are all oiled, and all dressed in the same black underwear, giving a standardized and objective context within which we can genuinely appreciate and compare their different body types.

What also makes the series interesting is that, in many cases, these professional athletes are at the top of their sport – they represent the body ideal in the types of sports in which they participate. Their physiques are the perfect visual examples of how both genetics and years of specifically targeted training come together to forge the world’s greatest athletes and, in their respective fields, the ideal human physique.

The photo series on athletic body types can be found as a book on Amazon.

Source: howardschatz.com (via reddit)

The photo series is available as a book on Amazon.