My work explores female identity in a male-centric society. I do this by creating digital collages that begin
with vintage nineteenth-century tintypes which I scan and manipulate to create a narrative about these
women’s lives. Each tintype tells a story created by the photographer and the sitter. I use that story
as my starting point to create a narrative about these women’s restricted lives by incorporating
nineteenth-century history, symbolism, botany, an infusion of fantasy, along with my personal
experiences.
The nineteenth-century was a fascinating era that brought the Industrial Revolution, scientific discoveries,
Darwinism, the invention of the photograph, and the beginning of the Women’s Suffrage Movement.
Because of Darwinism, women were thought to be inferior to men. Men and women lived in separate
“spheres”. This delineation of gender roles in society created the beginning of the Women’s Suffrage
Movement; sadly, many of those same beliefs still continue to affect women’s lives to this day.
I have given names to all of the women in my series. I believe this gives each one a personal identity,
something women did not have during their lifetime when they were considered to be the property of their
husbands. If I use a woman in multiple series her name always remains the same.
Many of the issues during the 19th-century that stood in the way of total equality between men and
women still exists today. It is important to know our history, and what these women fought for especially
now when our rights are being stripped away.