And according to the internet, we get euphoric joy from…eating salad.
Just take a look at Women Laughing Alone With Salad.
This feminist blog originated because of the overuse of photos on the internet showing women doing ridiculously inane things – like eating salad – as the main depiction of what it means to be a ‘woman’.
But one look at the unbridled pleasure on the faces of these ladies as they contemplate their nutritious, fibre-rich meals, and you just know they are thinking about the greasy burger and fries they had 20 minutes ago. Because obviously, a photo of a woman eating a salad screams #willpower far more than #girlpower.
And this is where stock photos have disappointed an entire generation of feminists.
Stock photos are those photos that you see all at the top of articles and in advertising, that are meant to represent a ‘standard’ image of things like a person, place or activity.
But really, all they’ve represented is one cliché after another, especially when it came to women (and our fictitious enjoyment of salad).
Never seen a happier face. Woman + salad.
Stock photos matter because many of us have been raised, and are raising girls, to believe they can do and be anything, because they are empowered human beings who aren’t restricted by their gender. We’re not just being mothers and wives and baking sh*t. Or eating salads.
But until recently, that’s what we’ve usually seen.
Thankfully, a stock photo revolution has been happening, that’s quietly changing what society associates with ‘a woman’.
In 2007, the most purchased image of ‘a woman’ from the world’s largest stock image library, Getty Images, was this:
Screenshot via Getty. Credit: Stephan Hoeck.
Yep, a photo of a sexualised woman doing bloody nothing.
In 2017, the most purchased stock image of a woman is now this:
me on the world according to stock photography https://t.co/JfDOgxbnpK
— Arwa Mahdawi (@ArwaM) September 11, 2017