July marked 10 years of me taking photographs. Being behind a camera has always made me feel safe — it’s one of the few places I feel like I can truly be myself. It’s where I feel understood. It’s where my vision is the clearest. It’s where I feel unjudged. I know while many people may share different opinions and values, photography has been my way to meet like minded people. I find it hard as a woman, especially in the workplace, to have my voice heard and my opinions understood. It’s a constant battle of equality - sometimes it’s like people are committed to misunderstanding you. Yet with art, that doesn’t matter. Whether it be a painting, an installation, or a photograph - we may all interpret it differently but what brings us together is the attraction of something beautiful.
Growing up as a girl is hard and I can’t imagine what it’s like to grow up as a teenager these days with social media! As a musician, we have to put all of our lives online. I get criticised daily on my voice, the way I look and the things I do. Self Love is so important. Look into the mirror and tell yourself something nice and remind yourself how beautiful you truly are and that no one else in this world is like you!
When I’m on tour I suffer from lots of anxiety. I constantly ask, are people going to like me? I am in love with fashion and what I wear makes me feel good but when you are on tour you don’t have time to look after yourself as much as you would being at home. It’s taken time over the years to really be comfortable in my own skin and of course like any human I have days where I wish I didn’t have those dimples on my legs or wish that I was a bit more toned. But the thing is, there is nothing more beautiful than a smile or the quirks that make you unique.
there is nothing more beautiful than
I’ve found that over the years of being a musician and having the job that I do, my role is to guide other women and put out positive vibes to feel good in your own skin and I do so through my music. My album 'Excuse Me' has some songs that showcase this. All My Issues is about being who you are and not letting your issues and anxieties get the best of you.
And I just hope that I continue through music to inspire other women to be confident.
"GOD IS GOOD. GOD IS GREAT"
Today marks two years ago that I received the best gift you could ever be given. A selfless act of love and life. To my donor- You are beautiful, You are a inspiration and I will cherish your heart like it’s my own. To my donor family out there somewhere in Australia, I’m sorry I haven’t written you a letter yet but I promise it is coming. I have so many things I want to say that I get frustrated and never finish it . You will forever be in my life whether we know each other or not. Reflecting on the last 3 Years is an emotional time for me but also realizing how strong I have been. Spreading the message around the world about organ donation and body image has been a passion that I will continue to do. Love yourself for who YOU are not who they want you to be. To all the people who have been following my journey and supporting me, Thank you. It’s a beautiful day to be alive!!!! Live your best life 🙌🏼 Those dreams/ goals you have and feel like they will never come true, what do you have to lose?? Get it. God is good. God is great.
A farmer shoves their entire arm up inside a cow and injects semen (which is also retrieved horrendously from a bull) into her.
People often say that it’s degrading to victims of rape for vegan activists to say that the forcible impregnation of cows is rape. Being a victim of rape, I think this is an important comparison. No, cows do not have the same intellectual and emotional cognitive abilities as us. But they are locked down so they cannot escape what is happening to them just as I was mentally manipulated into thinking I could not escape. This happens to them regularly, year after year, stolen baby after stolen baby. They do feel dread. They know what is coming. I once met a rescued mother dairy cow who hid her baby from her rescuers because she feared him being stolen again. They remember. Just as I remembered and knew what was coming for me each lesson with this adult.
Adults have a responsibility to care for children. Humans have a responsibility to care for animals, for the most vulnerable beings on our earth on which we have dominion. Both responsibilities have been grossly betrayed.
Nothing can be done for me anymore. The police stopped their investigation practically before they started. I’m now eighteen, what’s happened to me has left me forever changed but it is in the past. I hope to see a day in which far less than one in seven children experience what i have gone through and I will continue to fight for that day. Almost all people stand with me in that fight theoretically.
But even more now, I fight for a day where people even recognize that what we do to animals is wrong. That they too are vulnerable, they too suffer.
My story is one that was spoken too late for legal action to be taken, for justice to be served. Years after my abuse. But what is happening to dairy cows and to other animals, happens now.
Let me story help you connect to these enslaved beings, please. I hope at least what happened to me can help others.
My name is Emma, when I was a young child, I was sexually abused for a few years of my life. Children groomed by pedophiles are rendered voiceless. The large majority of survivors of child abuse never say anything, I didn’t until I was 14 and by then I had already struggled with mental illness and self harm for years because of what happened to me in an institution where children are meant to feel safe. This institution knew what had happened to me but the child abuser still works there. It is estimated that pedophiles can have hundreds of victims in their life time.
I used to be filled with so much rage. I went into a psych ward to pull as much of it out of me as I could, though the experience was gruelling I did achieve this: I want to spend as much as my time now as I can, shedding light on what is done in the dark, in secret, behind closed doors. I want to help protect those who are most voiceless and disempowered, as I was. For me, this means children and animals.
For this reason, I work with a children’s foundation that works to prevent child sexual abuse. I also volunteer with vegan animal rights groups. I’m an abolitionist vegan, which means I and the people I work with are not looking for the welfare of animals to improve - bigger cages, ‘humane’ killing, we recognize that animals are sentient and so do not deserve to be used or killed in any way.
In recent times I’ve been spending more time on helping animals than children. People care about children. Awful things happen to them, they happened to me, but when people find out they do care. Injustices are seen as disgusting. Injustices against animals are seen as a regular part of life. They are labelled as essential, humane, ethical. They are justified by tradition, money and taste.
When I was little, part of my abuse was a dildo being forced inside me. Being forced inside a tiny ten year old girl.
Dairy cows, like all other mammals, need to be impregnated in order for them to give milk. The first time I saw footage of the industry standard practices around forcibly impregnating these cows, I nearly threw up.
I lived a life of self loathing, It affected all aspect of my life and myself, the pain I felt was excruciating. I tried everything to take the pain away but nothing worked. It got to the point where it became so unbearable, I couldn’t stand to hate myself for another second. So what did I do? I chose to try and love myself.I didn’t get there straight away, I still haven’t, it’s a long process that requires will power, strength and determination. However it is in your power to change your mindset and self-perspective. I hated myself into accepting myself. I am almost there and one day I hope to say that I hated myself into loving myself.It’s down to you to make the change, to choose to embrace what shouldn’t be changed.
Everybody is beautiful and every body is beautiful. Even if you can’t see it, isn’t the fact your body is YOURS and yours only, beautiful within itself? You control it, the power is in your hands *paddy mcguinness voice*, you are the only one in the entire world that has your body. You are a unique individual, what’s the point in wasting time wishing you could be someone else, when you could be embracing and becoming your favourite version of yourself? You are fucking beautiful. As cringe as it may sound, you are. Think about it. Think about what your body can do. Think about what your mind can do. You are a living, breathing machine, made of flesh, muscle and bone. Be who you want to be, just make sure that it’s you.
All I have ever wanted was to be confident. Confidence goes further than just appearance, real confidence needs to be held in your core. Ever since I can remember I’ve felt like a burden. I felt like I was in the way, too irrelevant to speak, too annoying to be near. I have always had issues with feeling like I take up too much space and combined with negative body image, it lead to the destruction of my my life, my family and myself. I starved to become as small as I felt timid. My body was weak and my mind was numb. From rock bottom I built the foundation of my life, and through the endless blips and trips, I pick myself up and look fear in the face. I have finally found my identity and an inner strength I never knew I had. I have found courage, I am on my way to finding self acceptance and I have finally found my voice.
I remember struggling with my weight and appearence since i was 10 years old. I always thought that my size was the thing that held me back. Two years ago I lost quite much weight, and yes, I liked myself better for achieving my goal, but I didn’t love myself. I realized that self love isn’t a final form you achieve, It’s all about healthy habits on your daily basis.
I really believe that the most important strip for me was cutting toxic people out of my life. Self love is surrounding yourself with people who love you as you are and continously lift you up. It was never about the weight.
I find it hard being fully comfortable with myself. It’s hard for me to remember a time I felt wholly at peace with myself. Last year when I felt bad about myself externally I would take pride in my internal; I felt good about the art I was making and the love I had for others! This year I felt a lot of that slip from me I have a hard time finding comfort in my mind + body, I have a lot of shame.I’ve been trying to cut out anyone who makes me doubt myself, I’ve been journaling + drawing every day, yoga and anything else that makes me feel more in my body. I have a hard time believing people when they tell me nice things sometimes but I’m beginning to feel a bit more at peace again.
Being infatuated and in love are too totally different things. Don’t romanticize other people or pedestal them. Romanticize yourself, your all you have at the end of the day. You are worthy of the love you give to other people.
I want to talk about the show “13 Reasons Why” I watched the first season completely numb. I felt to trigged to even finish the recap of the first season to start the second because I knew in my heart I was watching something I had already lived. While this show glorifies so much, media like this truly works as a cautionary tale to teach us to practice kindness. I didn’t have media like this to fall back on when I was raped in high school and my school covered it up. Grown ass adults with children of their own told me to my face “we know he did it but we can’t prove it so because it didn’t happen on school grounds so it’s best you just keep your distance” This was after he admitted to doing it to the head of administration, the schools guidance counselor, and our advisor. The administration even straight up refused to contact the assaulters parents. My high school had less than a hundred students and a graduating class of 6. Distance really wasn’t something I could achieve at school so I built a whole home school curriculum from the ground up just so I wouldn’t have to go to school and see his face everyday and relive what happened to me. My teachers still dared to call me dumb and native based on the way I look and further damaged my ability to advocate for myself. I dedicated my life after that to educating myself and others about sexuality, sexual health, and receiving proper consent. I’m still working at it and taking small steps to normalize my life but a part of me knows I’ll never know normal after being gaslighted by educators that were meant to make sure I was safe. A few months ago that same advisor came up to me at a bar (this is the most inappropriate public interactions I’ve ever had) tried to start a conversation with me even though I was clearly uncomfortable and said to me “Well, not sure how you feel about _______ school anymore” Admitting openly he defended my school over me. I just wanted to let you know if no one has told you this, your experiences are real and valid. Never let anyone silence you even if you have to shout
being femme presenting means to constantly exist in a living contradiction about how to carry yourself. All people conditioned femme grown up with “That’s not not ladylike” “behave yourself” “you are to be seen not heard” Being queer adds another level of confusion on top of the message constantly projected by society. I think I’m beautiful because of my differences and also how I’m similar to women. That creates community and brings us all closer. I love all of the women who are able to help me navigate this world that sometimes doesn’t want to see us thrive and to everyone who has been a role model to me. I realize that not everyone is going to understand and that’s okay. I feel so much lighter as I write this and I hope this helps someone.
To me self care means allowing myself to set healthy boundaries, doing things in life that bring me joy, not being afraid to say no more often, stop over committing myself, and to spend more time with the people who matter to my heart. I’m a easily drained person as an introvert and still learning how to best manage my time when I do go out. I’m not in a rush, it’s a journey not a race. I know that good things take time.
My journey to self love has been a long one. As a teen I grew up in a time before social media was thing but there were still hard copy magazines that focused on what seemed to be almost unattainable perfect skin and bodies.
"I AM ART"
I would look at myself in the mirror and wish there were so many different things about myself, bigger boobs, plumper lips, a beauty mark like Cindy Crawford. I focused so much on superficial things. I developed unhealthy vices to cope with feeling out of sorts. Carried those vices from my teen years into my twenties. Fast forward to the now, to the present moment. I felt like I was getting a grip on my relationship with myself. I let go of harmful habits. And then BAM! the social media craze hit. I would feel somewhat content with the reflection in the mirror but then I would go online and feel like I wasn't supposed to have bumps and lumps or the occasional breakout.
Out of sheer boredom I created this Instagram persona who could show off her assets so to speak, who was somewhat confident. Who people sort of gravitated to. That persona grew a following. But then as time went on, it became a chore to compete with all the new fresh faces and bods popping up on line. I took a break from on-line life and just asked myself who I really was and what I wanted to portray. I started getting back into my art and reconnecting with my creative side, then I ended up creating a "real" IG page which focused on what I create. My art, creativity and my undying curiosity for life is what I love about myself. I tattooed my personal statement on myself, which is I AM ART. I chose that statement because art is open to interpretation and is never perfect. I wear this tattoo proudly.
It is nice to feel attractive now and again and it is a great feeling to be recognized or acknowledged. We can't rely solely on public accolades from people we don't know. We have to grow into ourselves, love ourselves...and that takes time.
i was born in an incomplete fam, in a country where girls like me were super limited. i grew up getting bullied w/ people making fun of my natural afro till i got so pressured to constantly straighten it. i went through 13 years of hell. but, as i grew, with the immense influence of @badgalriri, i learnt to embrace myself altho it was REALLY difficult for me, being fenced in a asian community but with the help of my loved ones, ive been pushing myself out of the stereotypes of people of colour.
My message to all female is that: you are so beautiful. we females have been given the power and honor to create and inspire. each of us are so unique and so special. lets all, embrace, inspire and believe