QUEST FOR BEAUTY
'Beauty has nothing to do with looks!'
"I think the world—especially the western one—forgot what Beauty really is. Quest For Beauty is an actual quest around the globe to rediscover the meaning of this magical word. A Journey that, through different cultures, will hopefully remind us to find acceptance and pride in the way we look and to love ourselves for who we are. Our uniqueness is, in my opinion, the best asset we have and there's nothing more beautiful than being our beautifully unique selves!"
THE STORY BEHIND THE PROJECT
A quest always begins with a question...
I had been working as a fashion photographer for about 3 years when I started to feel torn inside. I had recently noticed that more and more of my (beautiful) friends were constantly saying horrible things about their bodies and the way they looked—I had been guilty of that myself many times actually— and I slowly began to realize that it was my fault! With the kind of work I was producing, I was contributing to set very unrealistic Beauty standards that made my friends, myself and countless other women suffer. [Emotionally, psychologically and sometime even physically—coming from a background in the dance world i witnessed battles with eating disorders first hand].
I did a lot of soul searching and came to understand that I wanted to put my photography skills to use for something good, something to make women feel good about themselves and make up for the damage I had done. I wanted to show how beautiful every woman is.
I started asking myself questions, one in particular wouldn't leave me alone:
"What is Beauty?"
I had to find out. So I decided to go on a quest...a Quest for Beauty!
QUEST FOR BEAUTY is a project for social change.
We live in a world where we are constantly bombarded with images of flawless "perfect looking" women and we now think that's what we should aspire to look like. But those images aren't real. It takes hours of work, a model with physical traits that belong to below 2% of the population, a whole team of professionals and tons of photoshop and post production to achieve the look we see in those images.
What we see in advertisements and magazines are unreachable and unachievable propaganda-like standards, but not many people know that!
I think it's very important to remember that beauty comes in every size, age and skin tone and that—despite the efforts of the medias, the beauty and fashion industry to make us feel dissatisfied with the way we look —we shouldn't aspire to self-esteem-killer ideals.
EVERY woman deserves to feel Beautiful and comfortable in her own skin.
I believe that it isn't fair to let the media decide what beauty is for everyone else, to let society judge and reward people based on what they look like instead of what they do in their lives, how talented they are and how good they are to others.
So In October 2015 I started solo traveling the world, photographing and interviewing everyday women immersed in their everyday life in order to find out what Beauty means to them, and to eventually rediscover and redefine the meaning of the word itself.
To all the people I photograph that I can communicate with i ask 5 questions:
1. What is Beauty?
2.What's the most beautiful thing in the world to you?
3. What makes a woman beautiful?
4. What makes a woman unbeautiful?
5. Do you feel beautiful?
[You can see some of these answers HERE]
The goal of the project is to cover at least 20 countries across all Continents. As of right now I have covered 10 countries:
Italy(The Alps)- Morocco - USA(New York City) - Hong Kong - Vietnam - Mexico - Cuba - France - Ethiopia - Ireland
[You can see all the images in the section called COUNTRIES]
"Images are very powerful tools. They can influence and manipulate people perspective, we should use them carefully.
Beauty doesn't look a specific way. Beauty comes in a million shades! "
COUNTRIES I WANT TO COVER
Morocco ✔– Ethiopia ✔– Namibia – Madagascar - Senegal - Somalia - Egypt - South Africa.
France ✔ – Ireland ✔ – Italy, (The Alps ✔ & Sicily) – Finland – Greece – Iceland - Romania - Spain.
USA (Lousiana, Hawaii, NYC ✔) – Mexico✔ – Guatemala - Peru – Bolivia - Cuba✔ – Brazil – Guatemala – Argentina .
Hong Kong ✔ – India✔ – Japan – Vietnam ✔ – Russia (Siberia -Moscow) – Indonesia✔ — Yemen – Turkey – Afghanistan – Iran — Mongolia —Jordan — Nepal — China & Tibet — Myanmar — Sri Lanka✔.
Australia (Victoria & Northen territories) – Papua New Guinea.
This project is completely independent and self funded and at the moment. I usually travel alone and every trip I take comes with a fair share of risks and sacrifices. I am doing all this by myself and I'm investing all my time, energy, money, heart and soul into the project. I can always use some help to keep this going!
If you would like to contribute in any way to facilitate the completion of the project you can donate to Quest for Beauty by clicking on the Paypal button aside or you can check out the DONATE section in the menu bar to help in other ways.
FOR THE TECHNICAL NERD
Everything in this project is shot with natural light. The images taken in Morocco and in the Italian Alps were shot with a Canon 5DS (courtesy of Canon Europe) and an 85mm f/1.2, everything else was shot with a Canon 5D mark ii and an 85mm f/1.2.