Recently my two best girlfriends and I were invited to participate in another wonderful photography project by Renee Trubai called “Hear Her ROAR”. Renee says, The project is about showing women the beauty of themselves that has perhaps been forgotten, ignored or tucked away. It’s about rejuvenating- and celebrating- your love and respect for yourself.
This is simple for me … I want to show women the strength of their own beauty.
We haven’t yet scheduled the shoot but the preparation for this session, and all of Renee’s work, starts long before the first frame of film is snapped. She always does a thorough consultation first and provides some nuggets to mull over beforehand so that we go into the shoot with a mindset and vision for the end result.
For the preparation of this session Renee asked a seemingly simple yet quite challenging question, for me anyway.
What does beauty mean to you, for you? What environment / outfit / music / style / activity lights you up inside … the kind that has your eyes sparkling?
Whoa! Instantly I was blindsided by these questions. When was the last time I felt really beautiful? What does it look like when I feel beautiful?
My immediate answers to these questions seemed obvious. Well, I feel beautiful when my husband tells me I look pretty or when my little boy cuddles and kisses me. I feel beautiful when I’ve had my hair done at the salon and my nails are freshly polished.
And then I realised that these things were all about other people showing me I’m beautiful. But I wondered how I make myself feel beautiful. Just me. Not a compliment from someone else or when I’ve actually had the time to get primped and preened by a professional.
I wondered if I really didn’t know myself all that well and what I do, wear or listen to feel beautiful or whether I had just not ever really stopped to think about it. Maybe both.
I don’t wear much make up these days and most of the time my hair is dirty and tied up out of the way. I can’t remember the last time I wore high heels and most of my nice dresses still don’t fit almost a year after giving birth.
But when I think about what beauty means to me and what makes me feel beautiful in my daily life now, I think about laughing with my girlfriends so hard my tummy hurts. Teaching a Kanga class, working my body and helping other mums. I think about the empowerment of giving birth to my child and the strength I am learning now that I am a mother. I think about being on holidays, adventuring and exploring.
Don’t get me wrong, I still feel like a million dollars when I get the chance to dress up, when my body is trim and when I’ve spent hours being pampered at the salon. But to me, a truly beautiful woman is one that is happy, powerful and confident. A woman of strength. One who tries new things, loves fiercely, smiles a lot and can laugh at herself.
So I challenge you to think about it… What makes you feel beautiful?