Every time we open our Instagram we discover a new photographer working the lens like we’ve never seen before. With a distinct aesthetic of their own, each of these photographers is as empowering as the next but there is one thing they all have in common: they are young and they are women. Oh, and they are crazy talented, obviously. There is no doubt that for the past few years there has been an powerful force of young female photographers making waves in the industry. The list of talents we could name is endless. Seriously, we would be gushing for days. But there are six female photographers we are currently crushing on that each have their own unique perspective not just on that buzzy term “female gaze” but on the female experience. From exposing modern femininity to giving a voice to marginalized identities, these photographers are creating a change through the power of imagery.
Female nudity is something Los Angeles-based photographer Amanda Charchian never shies away from, in fact, she regularly encourages it. Her most indepth project, Pheromone Hotbox – a book of photographs spanning from her creative adventures from 2012 to 2015 – celebrates the female form, femininity and sensuality. Featuring 28 female contemporary artists that are both her friends and her muses, the book gives a voice to each one of them. In an industry where female nudity is often exploited, Amanda’s art does just the opposite. It sheds light on the reality of modern femininity and how unique each woman’s perception and connection is to it. Amanda’s brilliant combination of fine arts and photography will have you hypnotized.
We wouldn’t be surprised if you have heard about Samra Habib and her ongoing photo documentary project Just me and Allah. It has received praise from a ton of big names such as Vanity Fair, The Guardian and BBC. This Toronto-based creative (writer, editor, videographer and photographer) has been bringing to light the struggles and complex experiences of queer Muslims since 2014. Through photography and interviews, Samra has created a community of acceptance and support. Her photographs tell the stories of individuals from all around the world who would often be underserved by mainstream media. Her ability to capture one’s emotion, knowledge and beauty in one snap is inspiring, to say the least. Samra’s images are both empowering and informative, and pretty damn stylish too.
You’ve probably already regrammed or retweeted one of Daniela Vesco’s photographs unknowingly. Well, it’s time to change that. Born in Costa Rica, Daniela has always had a love for the arts. Pursuing photography accelerated when she moved to New York and worked for notable studios such as Richard Corman’s. But it is her current job as the digital design manager at Parkwood Entertainment (yes, that is Beyonce’s company) that led her to her most recent claim to fame. Daniela is the talent behind Beyonce’s fan favorite pregnancy photos (plus many other photos of B – she was by her side the whole time capturing her Formation tour). Aside from the fact these photos are of the Queen B herself, they are strikingly powerful. Daniela’s ability to capture movement and strength (underwater!) is surreal. She is also an expert at motion photography which is a whole other ballgame to praise. Now that the cat is out of the bag we can guarantee this is one photographer to watch.
Kristiina Wilson (the talent behind our Working Girl-inspired spring editorial) likes to celebrate life through her photography. But, she also loves to poke fun at it and all the everyday weirdness that people create themselves. The result? A perfectly peculiar aesthetic that as she says “could most easily be described as absurd.” Kristiina was given her first camera (a Brownie Hawkeye) when she was five years old. Ever since then she has been fascinated with taking people’s pictures. After a life of high school photography class, darkroom days, and a college BFA and MFA in photography, she now lives and works in New York City. Pushing boundaries and capturing the so-called unusual is the norm for Kristiina’s photography. Recently, she and photographer Logan Jackson, created an online space, You Do You, for people across the identity spectrum. It’s an non-profit, collaborative platform for people of all genders, sizes, ages, colors, and abilities. Her foundation shows the world that fashion should be inclusive and that it in fact it fits on every body. Let’s just say, you best keep an eye out for Kristiina because she is a serious force behind driving positive change in the industry.
AMANDA JASNOWSKI PASCUAL
“Be good, try hard, have fun.” This is the motto of photographer Amanda Jasnowski Pascual. Born in Spain, raised in Ohio, Amanda moved herself to Brooklyn, New York in 2012 to pursue her love for photography. In a city filled with creatives, Amanda has made her mark. The moment we laid eyes on her work we fell under her technicolor dreamcoat spell. To say Amanda is an expert at playing with color is an understatement. Her vibrant photography is playful and intoxicating. With an array of textures, focus on natural light, and exploration of movement, Amanda captures true beauty in every image. Her aesthetically pleasing photographs encapsulate her strong belief in the therapeutic power of art and her aspiration for people to see the beauty in life is, in our books, completely accomplished. Plus, she has worked with some of our favorite designers, like Caron Callahan, Samantha Pleet and Pansy Co., to name a few.
New York photographer Chloe Horseman is a genius at playing with movement, body and color. Just like most photographers do, she got into the game by being inspired by another: her father. Back in their small hometown in Georgia, he would take photos of people and sell them for $50 bucks a roll. “It always intrigued me that people would pay for another’s eye. I think my eye for things is still very much inspired by my father.” At only 19 years old, Chloe is strutting her stuff with a creative edge like we’ve never seen before. Her eye is strong and her heart is determined. “When I see something I like, I can’t let go of it. My mind takes it to set. It feels as if I have a superpower – this ability to shoot things in a way others cannot see.” We couldn’t agree more. Chloe’s photography has that superhero quality, that’s both comforting and daring. But don’t just take our word for it. Chloe has worked with some of our favorite boutiques and designers like The Drive New York and Rachel Comey, plus one of our style muses, Reese Blutstein.
Stylist for above photos: Phoenix Johnson