Say cheese

Why I was terrified of being photographed

I don’t think I know a woman who hasn’t been subjected to at least a handful of unwelcome comments about her appearance throughout her life.

The ‘verys’ amongst us often cop it the worst – the very tall, very short, very thin and very voluptuous are somehow fair game for criticism from everyone with a pair of eyes, even if they are complete strangers.

There’s one particular group of ‘verys’ that is almost guaranteed to suffer the most venomous attacks of all… and that’s the very outspoken.

Women who dare go public with their opinions, especially if they’re controversial and most definitely if they’re of the feminist slant, will inevitably be called ugly (or one of the more offensive variations of the term).

Author Dannielle Miller wrote about the abuse that female commentators suffer here.

It was for that reason I recently felt terrified to get my photos taken for my publisher’s marketing department.

The very nature of my work throws me into the ring with wonderful women like Dannielle Miller and makes me a potential target for misogynistic bullies.

As I applied my make-up (something I don’t do often) and had my hair blow-dried for the photos, I was angry at myself for playing the game.

Why did I care? Whether I looked my best or not, the creeps would still lash out. And the fact that they’ll be slamming my looks rather than my beliefs says it all really.

So, instead of sharing the shiny, pretty photos I sent away for the publicity trail – I thought I’d take some inspiration from the Pretty Girls Ugly Faces meme.

I found it way more empowering, and a hell of a lot more fun, to focus on looking silly rather than attractive.

Tiara head

What do you reckon? Actually don’t answer that – because the point is, I’m learning not to care!






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