ME is a series of fashion portraits exploring female identity. This initiative engages the cooperation of a professional photographer along with women who challenge the male-centric gaze discourse. Portraits have produced new concerns for women as developments in photography have given them more chances for self-expression.
The standard ideal of the male gaze has long been present in popular media commentary, and increased mainstream aesthetic anxiety has coincided with the choice of female self-expression. The notion that photographs displaying self-beauty are a contemporary reflection of the continued dominance of the passive, objectified female subject by men, demonstrate that women’s position in photographic culture and industry is often marginalised. One area in which women are highlighted in fashion photography is in front of the camera. Women are photographed frequently, primarily by men.
Cultural consciousness is still male-oriented in constructing the photographer’s image. I am already undermining the traditional straight male gaze in this body of work by not being male. I am working with another woman, and you see her through my eyes.
This body of work is not a call for a simple escape from the male gaze, but rather an assertion of the true visibility of female self-choice and expression.