In my line of work, as a photographer in Toronto, I get to meet so many incredible people from all walks of life. I get to know them intimately. And I am fortunate enough to tell their stories, visually. Oftentimes shining light on the little things that define them, and highlighting those nuances through my lens, through photographs.
The 40 over 40 project is a whole photography movement that I'm excited to be a part of. The goal of the project is to empower and celebrate amazing women in their 40s, 50s, 60s, and beyond, and to bring to the world their stories - as diverse and special as the women themselves.
My work is not about highlighting transformations, glorified makeovers, or dramatic before-and-afters. My intention is to show you the way you see yourself - all that you are - different angles, different versions, different moods and vibes on different days. The 40 over 40 project is a collection of stories that celebrate women and their journeys.
Take a glimpse into one woman’s journey! Meet Masha: one of the first participants who helped me kick off this special project. Masha is a copywriter, founder of a content creation agency, entrepreneur, wife, mom of three, and so much more.
“I wish I could say that age is just a number and I don't think about it.
The truth is, of course I do, occasionally. Once in a while a thought pops into my head about all the things I thought I’d accomplish or try by the time I turn 40. With an air of regret, I sometimes wish for things to be a little different.
I wish I’d gotten sooner into working out and mental self-care.
I wish I was married younger and had kids in my 20s.
I wish I’d launched my business sooner instead of climbing the corporate ladder for years.
I wish I’d traveled across Europe when I had the time, opportunity, and disposable income.
I wish I’d mastered money-saving skills early on.
The list goes on and on and on.
But then eventually the noise settles.
And that’s where I take a less melodramatic look at my life and appreciate it for what it is. Full of amazing people and things, necessary mistakes and valuable lessons, surprises and confirmations, places and experiences, opportunities and discoveries. And the list evolves each day.
The thing about being 40 is you could look at it a couple of ways.
You could view it as some type of proverbial checkpoint where you take stock of what you’ve done, dwell on things that you regret, and then push forward.
Or you could simply bypass the whole symbolism that comes with being 40 and over altogether, and just push forward. Like, thank you, next. Which is what I’m doing.
Sure, I could be further ahead, make more, and be more. But I’m pretty content with who I am today - always evolving, always pushing forward, never settling.
About my experience in the 40 over 40 project: I loved taking part in this project. I love what this initiative stands for and what it signifies. While I'm not entirely comfortable in front of camera, I felt at ease with Veronica. She expertly guided me into the most flattering poses, making me laugh along the way, and alleviating any discomfort I was feeling.
Looking at the final photos during the reveal made me smile - which I think a great photo is supposed to do. Bonus points, I was able to….no, scratch that....I immediately used the photos I got from the shoot with Veronica in my business for my copywriting agency, Content Vertical. Anytime I post them on Instagram, I get tons of compliments!
I'm happy I have this experience to look back on. Let's do this again at 50!”