I grew up in a world where beauty, and being beautiful was--everything. I would imagine, that this is the world most of us grew up in. One of my first childhood memories was someone stopping me and telling me how beautiful I was. This pattern of verbal validation continued through out my childhood and teen years. Despite others perception of my own beauty, I found myself struggling with my own self image.
As I grew into my teen years, I was in desperate need of verbal validation. Being a teenager was tough, I found myself in the midst of weight gain, bad haircuts, failed attempts at eyeliner, and uniquely for me having my leg amputated right in the middle of it all. My teen years became a pretty strong recipe for lack of confidence and poor body image. I struggled to find my value and my identity beyond what I felt I needed to hear from the outside world. At the tail end of my teen years I landed my first job in the beauty industry, feeding fashion and self confidence to housewives and young girls. The industry forced me, unknowingly to establish my own self confidence in who I was, by helping others gain and discover their own confidence.
When I see a picture of myself now, I see transformation past, present and future. We each have an ability to continually transform and evolve our idea of what makes us beautiful--maybe it's the perfect eyeliner, a little black dress, words from a stranger, or knowing we are innately good within. Beauty is beyond what we see on the surface, it's the very essence of who we are mind, body and soul--we write the definition to our own sense of beauty.
When I heard about this project, I knew I had to work on it. Behind the scenes and in front of the camera, I knew I wanted to bestow value and beauty into each woman who stepped into the spotlight, not only on the surface but to the very core of their being.