Friday, August 30, 2013

See Beauty Everywhere

I found out about this TED Talk from a friend on Facebook linking this article.  Rick Guidotti is a former fashion photographer who finds beauty in genetic difference.  As a fashion photographer, he was told what beauty was his whole career and asked to go out and shoot it.  But one day, he came across a girl with Albinism and realized that she was stunning.  And he ran to the local bookstore to find out about this condition, and was shocked at what he found.  All the images in medical textbooks portrayed the people with these conditions as sad, even as ugly.

Rick says:
“It’s terrifying. There’s other ways to present this. I’ve spoken to so many genetic counselors who have a family in front of them and say ‘Ok, this is what your daughter is going to have. Read this.’ And they cover up the photograph because it will freak the family right out.. There’s gotta be something else we can do. There’s gotta be another way to present that information to that family.”
So he went about shooting kids with genetic conditions and showing them their beauty.  As a result, these kids have better self-esteem and are convinced of their own self-worth in a world that typically treats them as "other" at best, and ugly and freakish at worst.

Rick also has a social mission - he's starting support groups for these kids across the globe in their communities.  I wish we weren't judged so easily by appearance, but until we're not, we greatly need this work.  I love this.

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