As time goes on and I continue this project I feel an ever stronger urger to continue sharing stories of women who fight and overcome. There is so much strength that comes from listening to others. Stories that feel so personal to the teller sometimes make a profound impact on the most unlikely listener. Stories preserve our past and help us create a stronger, smarter, kinder future. As we push forward into uncertain waters, I hope we can all take the time to listen and share with one another in the hopes of creating a more connected and respectful world.
Please view the previous installments of the project here:
To Be Woman
To Be Woman: Part 2
If you’re interested in becoming a part of this project and sharing your story, please don’t hesitate to reach out to me personally HERE.
To be a woman is to be mocked by the man behind the counter at Calumet Photographic:
He made fun of me, laughing at me, telling me I was “mixing two alcohols” by purchasing film chemistry & cf cards.
I shall not be moved by sexism
To be a woman is to be sexually harassed by the man who owns the photo studio down the street:
He put his hands all over my shoulders, neck, stomach, back, while he told me he treats photography as sexual foreplay & only photographs women he wants to fuck; then he asked to photograph me.
I shall not be moved by patriarchy
To be a woman is to be abashed by the promoter who puts on Erotic Art Events:
He asked me to lie & advertise false sales, I was to only bring in female models for “the patrons delight”, no male models, then he ran his hand down my thigh, & patted my ass.
I shall not be moved by chauvinism
To be a woman is to promote the idea that my work is amazing, phenomenal & groundbreaking though, when the exact same work is presented by a man, it is be merely mediocre.
I shall not be moved when Forbes states that my photography profession is “ruled” by women.
Women only represent 50% in number & average less than 17K annually.
To be a woman is to break the glass ceiling, only to be sliced open as is shatters.
I have been called River Diva. I have been called Last Chance Hollywood Cuddlenick. I have been called bitch and every other demeaning name under the sun. I have been told I don’t belong on the river, never mind that I have achieved numerous certifications and have many years of experience. I will never be hired at certain companies in Canada, Switzerland and Italy, all for the single reason that they don’t hire women. I have heard the disappointment in a customer’s voice when they realize they “have gotten the girl guide.” I prove them wrong every single time. However, I shouldn’t have to. Me being a female guide isn’t the problem. The outdated notion of what a woman “should be” or “can do” is the problem. I am exactly where I should be – doing what I love. I have been called Adventure Barbie, but make no mistake, I am no Barbie Doll.