If there’s one thing I’ve admired about Fenty Beauty (by Rihanna) it is how it has changed the landscape of the beauty industry by being more inclusive than any other brand (including makeup companies and corporations that have dominated for decades).
What Rihanna did with Fenty Beauty was show people, with complexions not being served by typical foundation palettes, that they mattered. She did this by vastly expanding those out-dated palettes to include them.
No longer did people have to buy multiple foundations to mix and create a blend that suited the colour of their skin. Fenty Beauty said to these people, who had previously been grossly ignored by the beauty industry, that they mattered AND SHE HAS SERVED THEM.
What does this have to do with Well Fed Photography and human milk feeding?
When I originally set out to interview Storytellers for our upcoming book series, “Bainne Cíche: Stories of Breastfeeding Ireland”, I set the intention to document stories from people, with a multitude of backgrounds, who’d navigated different challenges both in life and in breastfeeding.
My intention was to include a vast array of perspectives so that we could all broaden our views of breastfeeding – what it looks like, what the people who breastfeed look like, what has influenced their decisions around feeding, and so much more.
But, it was only by going through this creative process, that I realised just how under-served the human milk feeding community is – and not just when it comes to antenatal, maternity, and postnatal services.
One of our Bainne Cíche Storytellers, Caroline, who exclusively pumped for her daughter and told me that she considered herself a “breast milk feeder”, rather than a “breastfeeder”.
Before going through this process, I’d considered nearly everyone who chose to feed human milk “breastfeeders”. But, through having intimate conversations with Bainne Cíche Storytellers, I started to learn so much more and the “breastfeeding palette” I had known before this project expanded – starting with nouns, verbiage, and terminology.
I began to realise that if I wanted all human milk feeders to know that they are welcome and will be beautifully served here, I had to begin to use words and imagery that express that. I am still in the process of updating our website and the information and imagery related to our services but, despite the length of time that these changes may take, we recognise that they deeply matter!
It is my hope that, as Well Fed Photography continues to grow in how it serves this ever-expansive and diverse human milk community, more and more people will see themselves in the human milk feeding palette represented in our services, our online spaces, and in our advocacy.
And you and others you know may be able to help!
If you are part of the human milk feeding community and feel like you don’t fit the stereotypical visual of a woman feeding her baby at the breast, get in touch to have a Human Milk Feeding Photo Session of your own or apply to be a participant in our Nourishment Human Milk Movement & Model Call.
If you have doubts or questions about whether a Human Milk Feeding Photo Session or our Nourishment Model Call is right for you, hit reply and let’s chat!
Thank you for being here.
Invite your friends!
And join our Share Your Breast/Chestfeeding Story Facebook Group if you haven’t already.
So Much Love,
~Ariana Youmans Keenahan
Well Fed Photography
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