Inspired by International Women’s Day, I want to photograph 52 ladies, one a week, from my life and recommended to me. To me, the most inspiring women in my life are my friends and family.
They are the ones who push me to go further and pick me up when I’m down. I couldn’t do anything without my girl gang. I want to empower my ladies to see themselves how I see them.
I know a lot of us can be shy in front of the camera, but what is more empowering than owning our own image and being proud of who we are? Know that I am proud of every single one of you. It’s about seeing yourself how I see you – wonderful, clever, brave, strong, incredible and inspiring.
All of the portraits will be taken in black and white so that the focus will be on your wonderful spark. And don’t we all look better in black and white?!
Not only did I want to take beautiful portraits of these gorgeous ladies, I also wanted to give them a chance to reflect on what matters to them and what they value about being female. I’ve given them all quite a few questions and asked them to answer whichever ones they like the most. Hopefully, it will allow you to see each of them as not only beautiful in their photo but stunning through their words.
If you know someone inspiring I should include, please recommend them. Could be your best friend, Mum, colleague etc.
This is a project I started a few months ago – right after International Women’s Day in March – and I’m so happy to be finally starting to post the series.
Our first lady is my other half, my beautiful sister Emma. She is currently living her dream – travelling the world for 8 months with her best friends. Emma is everything to me. She is the first person I turn to for advice – whether its of the emotional support variety or for her rightfully-so ‘suck-it-up princess’ attitude – she always knows the right thing to say. Because of how we grew up (living in 4 countries), she’s the only person who I’ve done everything with. After each move and while we were new, we were each other’s only friends but now we actively seek out each other to hang out just us. She was the best housemate and crafting buddy ever. We have scarily similar tastes but grew up to have such different attitudes towards things like work and travel etc. Emma has never forgiven me for making us miss our very first train together on our solo trip around Europe back when she was 18. And I’ve never let her forget the time she tried to prank me that our luggage got stolen but it backfired! With a sister, you’ve always got built-in bestie but I know mine takes the cake and she is more than just my bestie. All she wants is for me to be happy because in her words, “a happy Amanda is less work” for her!
So of course I started with her.
Right at the start of her travels, I asked her to think over what it means to be a lady in 2017.
Can you tell us a little something about yourself:
I am a 24-year old, nurse, avid traveller (thus the 8 month vacation), dog lover (missing my dogs the most out of everyone in Oz), wanna-be creative spirit!! My family are the most important people to me and they keep me going through all the ups and downs. I couldn’t be the person I am today without them! I especially wouldn’t be able to last 8 months of travelling without them listening to my rants and stories!
What would you tell 13-year old you?
That there are going to be many up and downs ahead like everyone else and you are always going to have your family by your side! To take every opportunity presented to you, in particular anything involving travel. Try and stress a bit less, things will happen without your control and sometimes you just ‘gotta roll with the punches’.
What has been your best year?
This year I hope!!!!
Hopefully the next 8 months will be an amazing experience, the first 3 weeks of the trip have already been a blast and the first 3 months have been fun so we are on a great path to this being the best year!!!
To you, what is happiness?
Happiness is being comfortable with the person you are and the people around you!! It’s being able to smile and enjoy yourself without stressing the big things (not going to kid myself I’m always going to stress the small things but that doesn’t mean I’m not happy). It’s about spreading the happiness to those around you, its not something you can do alone!
What brings you happiness?
Being with my dogs, family and friends!!! Surrounding myself with those who know and support me!!
What gets you up in the mornings and what motivates you?
In Melbourne when living at my parent’s house my dog, Elle, literally gets me up in the morning with a great pounce on your chest just to make sure you’re alive, she was probably a nurse in her past life and keeping up to date her CPR skills
Now the motivation to explore the new city we are in everyday gets me up in the mornings, so much to explore and eat!!
What are your guilty pleasures that you shouldn’t feel guilty about?
Reality TV – how can you resist some Toddlers & Tiaras (even tried to find a pageant to see while driving around the USA but sadly missed it by a day in one of the towns), 19 Kids and Counting (still on the search for a Jim Bob to bring home to the parents) and Keeping Up With The Kardashians (such a classic)
What is the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?
“Fake it until you make it”
Which I have taken to mean appear the right amount of confident until you have the skills required to keep going. .In particular, at work you need to appear confident so that people will trust your ability within the work force. Although when you first start, you are going to have so many questions and limited knowledge it is in your best option to “fake it until you make it”.
I also use it in personal situations, it always helps to have a little bit of confidence when it comes to talking to randoms, making friends in awkward social situations or doing something out of your comfort zone.
What is your personal mantra right now?
Do something that scares you and as my phone case says “take the road less travelled”
I.E. terminate your contract at work and take an 8 month trip around the world rather than take the path everyone else takes to work and save. This is way more fun and scary at the same time!!
There are many things that scare me or make me anxious but this year my mantra while travelling is to push myself because in 10 years I don’t want to have any regrets about my trip.
What have the females in your family taught you about being a woman?
To love yourself for who you are. This the straw you drew in the world and you should embrace and cherish it rather than continuously criticise and put yourself down!! Negativity never gets you anywhere!!!