“Taking joy in living is a woman’s best cosmetic.”
– Rosalind Russell
The WOW Project – women from all over the world
Welcome to my ‘World of Women’, or the WOW project. This is my attempt to portray women from different countries with a WOW factor. These are ordinary women in extraordinary circumstances. But, as Malaga is their new home, they are far from home, or rather far from their roots.
Why am I doing this?
Because I like women, indeed the travelling kind. Granted, I am one myself, so I might not be entirely neutral. However, I am trying to show that we share the same emotions worldwide, regardless of origin or nationality. Sadness, joy, fear are universal feelings. Yes, we are different, with different cultural backgrounds, values and principles, and that’s okay. Diversity enriches life experience! Yes, of course, it is easier to communicate when people speak the same language. That’s why the smile was invented. A smile is universal, beautiful, regardless of wrinkles and grey hair.
Put several women together, and something beautiful happens, be it at the gate of the village school, at work or at the kitchen table. Origin, nationality and age are not the differentiators. Women just want to talk about their joys, concerns, and problems, not finding solutions but sharing feelings.
Portraits of the women in this project
The photographed ladies are all residents of Malaga (Spain). I recruited among friends, their daughters, my children’s classmates and people I had just met. The pictures were taken in and around Malaga as a final assignment for a photography course. I tried to cover as many nationalities as possible within the given time frame. Still, I managed less than ten per cent of the more than 140 represented in this region.
These pictures were taken for a Photo project. But this is just the beginning of a journey in which I want to capture ‘women’s lives from different countries with their different customs and cultures in a new series, ‘Women of the World’, on this blog.
Thank you to the representatives of Denmark, Germany, England, France, Israel, Italy, Japan, Libya, Morocco, Poland, Russia, Spain and Thailand for their patience and willingness to cooperate in this photo project.
Oh, and I am a Dutch woman, b.t.w.
Women of the World
Women derive self-esteem from relationships and conversations. That is the same worldwide, whether in Russia, Thailand or Morocco. Even self-consciousness seems to be universal. The response to my request to model was similar every time. It does not matter whether one is from Germany, Japan or Israel:
“I’m not beautiful; my nose is crooked; you’d better ask someone else; I never look good in pictures; I have too many wrinkles; I must go to the hairdresser first; my hair is grey.”
Only the girls (those under 18) participated without too much fuss. Yet, all the women I asked participated in this photo project. Apart from a Belgium lady, I am still working on that!
This blog is for all the ‘Women of the World’ touching my life.
All photos were taken with a Canon EOS 1200D, a DSLR entry-level camera, using the following lenses:
- 18 – 50 mm;
- 70 – 300 mm;
- 50 mm.
Most of the portraits were taken outdoors using a reflector. The pictures of Saskia, Marina and Miriam were shot indoors with artificial light. The images were digitally processed in Lightroom. Most were shot in RAW.
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