I connected with the local non-profit, GRRLS - Girls Reaching Radical Levels of Success, for a self-esteem and confidence-boosting workshop - #LoveYourSelfie: Body Positive Workshops for GRRLS.
Jean Munson from Plot Twist Publishing and Jaya Manske from Coaching Compassion were the facilitators. The workshop included fun crafts, support circles, and a cosplay/costume photoshoot. LaTrice Treal Woodard of Treal Stylez provided the professional makeup for the photoshoot portion of the workshop.
It was important for me to be involved in this project, on a personal level. I have two teenage daughters, and a third who at age 7 is brimming in confidence, but the confidence plunge is right around the corner for her. An article in TIME points out that between the ages of 8-14, girls’ confidence levels drop by 30 percent. And the effects are long lasting... many women fail to recover their confidence.
We wanted the girls to be photographed in any way that made them feel powerful and confident. We always have beautiful dresses and accessories in our studio for our clients, and Jean also brought a variety of fun props for them to use in their portrait if they'd like. Many girls chose our dresses, but a couple of them selected some of the fun props for their turn in front of the camera.
Confident women begin as confident girls, and I absolutely loved seeing how these girls braved the camera for their portrait. Every one of them is unique and awesome, and it was a pleasure working with them.
This is an email from one mom, which just validated our whole purpose for this workshop;
"I have to say that the whole experience was an overwhelmingly positive one for [my daughter]. She can be a little shy, especially when she’s the center of attention. Because of that, I’ve never loved a posed photo that I haven’t taken of her. With a stranger behind the lens she’s always stiff and ill at ease. That’s why I gasped so hard when you showed me her portrait yesterday. It brought tears to my eyes to see her so comfortable and confident in that dress. All of the girls shone in their portraits. I wanted to see and soak them all in. I can’t thank you enough for sharing your talent and kindness with all of the girls. You truly captured their spirits."