2020 was a year of learning and reflection. One of the things I thought about a lot in 2020 was the importance of celebrating women, especially in the wedding photography industry. This post will do just that! When I started shooting weddings, there weren’t many women doing it in Portugal. It makes me very happy to see that in 2021 there are so many incredible women who started or continued to shoot weddings. I’m very proud of all of you!
So I made a list of women photographers in Portugal, from North to South and the Islands. We have photographers from different cities, with different styles and different values. You can check the list two paragraphs below, and at the end, I wrote some thoughts on the role of women in the world of wedding photography.
When I had this idea I never wanted to make a super elitist list, with only 10 people or only my friends. The goal was to share a large number of women wedding photographers that I respect and admire because of the quality of their work. A thousand apologies if I forgot someone. I had to add new names almost every hour and it ended up being a big list. But there’s a lot of love and work to go around!
In 2020 I felt the need to shout that Feminism is important and that we can do a lot in our small world.
Wedding photography is dominated by super talented men and the place of women is often overlooked. How many wedding photography conferences have we seen where there is not a single woman? How many workshops or debates have an almost 100% male participant list? I think it’s important to reflect on what this means and how we can make our microcosm more equal, with the same opportunities for women and men. In Portugal, we’re arriving late at this conversation. “Manels” are rarely discussed – a term commonly used in the US, which refers to conferences with only men – and, unfortunately, remains very common. Even when working as a team, women end up playing a secondary role.
My goal with this post is to get that discussion going. We all agree that Feminism (equality between men and women) is important, but perhaps we think it’s not that serious or we do not know what to do to counter it. Because this is the only world we know, we may find some things “natural” and introspection can be difficult. Men continue to earn 14% more than women in Portugal and that women continue to be left with a larger share of household chores. A more equitable world would be better for everyone, not just women. Obviously, nobody wants to take the place of men, we just want to have access to the same opportunities. Assuming that we do not always contribute to this equality goal is the first step to achieve any type of change. We’re often so busy and on autopilot that we might not even stop to think if we could do it differently. Whenever we organize an event, gathering, conversation, live, workshop, or conference, we can try to invite women to participate and make sure that it’s not just a boys club. There are so many women with amazing work in Portugal. Just look at the list above.
Yes, I agree. And, in an ideal world, that would be enough. Unfortunately, we do not live in an ideal world. In the world we live in, women usually have to overcome more obstacles. They may even end up reaching the same place, but the starting line is not the same for everyone. I don’t mean that men have it easy nor I want to underestimate their effort. Far from it. They also have to try hard and many may even have more challenging routes. But life isn’t harder for men simply because they are… men. And that is a privilege. There is a funny video that went viral a few years ago about what privilege means. If you want, you can see it here.