“Gender Should Not Determine Professional Opportunities.” Chris Crisman

We’ve featured Chris Crisman’s  “Women’s Work” collection quite a bit over the past few months, and are happy to finally have the bulk those photos in one place!  The following captions and interview come by way of aPhotoEditor.com.

What compelled you to create this body of work?
Back in February of this year I was having lunch in New York with some art producers from Droga 5. One of those art producers was Emily Heller. Emily mentioned that she had a friend who had recently relocated from Brooklyn to our home base of Philadelphia. This friend, Heather Marold Thomason, had recently switched careers and is now a butcher. My immediate reaction was how I’ve never met a female butcher. I asked Emily for an introduction and I was photographing Heather at her butcher shop just a few weeks later. Once we completed the shoot it immediately became something I wanted to further develop.

I am a father of two – a 4 year old boy and a 2 year old girl. I was raised to believe that I could do whatever I wanted to when I grew up. I want pass down a similar message to my children and without caveats. I want to raise my children knowing that their dreams have no limits and that they have parents supporting them to dive into anything they feel passionate about.

How did you find the women? 
This original shoot with Heather prompted a number of conversations and a snowball effect of similar shoots. We would do one shoot and then the subject would suggest another person.  Every opportunity being presented felt like one that I could not pass up. I reached out to a handful of my favorite industry contacts and the response was incredible. There are so many people that we would still love to include in the project, but we’ll get there.  I believe that Women’s Work is the type of project where the purpose does not have an expiration date. 

What were the determining factors?
Honestly, there was no exclusion to whom we considered. The strongest factors that led us to the people you see now were availability and excitement for participation. At the onset we did create a big list of professional positions that were not typically held by women, but after a few shoots and making contact with some friends, the participants just started flowing in on their own.

This is a fairly big roll out, did you have a planned strategy or was it more organic?
In mid-October we decided that the body of work was at a point that it was worth putting it out there. In light of last week’s election, I hope that this project can provide a hopeful message as we all move forward.

In a sentence, what’s your message?
Gender should not determine professional opportunities.

What compelled you to create this body of work?
Back in February of this year I was having lunch in New York with some art producers from Droga 5. One of those art producers was Emily Heller. Emily mentioned that she had a friend who had recently relocated from Brooklyn to our home base of Philadelphia. This friend, Heather Marold Thomason, had recently switched careers and is now a butcher. My immediate reaction was how I’ve never met a female butcher. I asked Emily for an introduction and I was photographing Heather at her butcher shop just a few weeks later. Once we completed the shoot it immediately became something I wanted to further develop.

I am a father of two – a 4 year old boy and a 2 year old girl. I was raised to believe that I could do whatever I wanted to when I grew up. I want pass down a similar message to my children and without caveats. I want to raise my children knowing that their dreams have no limits and that they have parents supporting them to dive into anything they feel passionate about.

How did you find the women? 
This original shoot with Heather prompted a number of conversations and a snowball effect of similar shoots. We would do one shoot and then the subject would suggest another person.  Every opportunity being presented felt like one that I could not pass up. I reached out to a handful of my favorite industry contacts and the response was incredible. There are so many people that we would still love to include in the project, but we’ll get there.  I believe that Women’s Work is the type of project where the purpose does not have an expiration date. 

What were the determining factors?
Honestly, there was no exclusion to whom we considered. The strongest factors that led us to the people you see now were availability and excitement for participation. At the onset we did create a big list of professional positions that were not typically held by women, but after a few shoots and making contact with some friends, the participants just started flowing in on their own.

This is a fairly big roll out, did you have a planned strategy or was it more organic?
In mid-October we decided that the body of work was at a point that it was worth putting it out there. In light of last week’s election, I hope that this project can provide a hopeful message as we all move forward.

In a sentence, what’s your message?
Gender should not determine professional opportunities.

 

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