- How old am I:
Strong women are the backbone of society. This year, we gave our wonderful jury an extra challenge.
Something strange happens to women after we leave our 20s — as far as stock photos are concerned, we seem to all-but disappear. To capture real photos of real women over the age of 40, living real lives. We publish at least one article a day on our site. And as our articles are all about or aimed at women, we need to source a LOT of images.
Thankfully today there are plenty of free stock image sources, like Unsplash and Pexels. They share high quality images contributed by photographers and creators for free use.
Quite often, good photos are on closed local sites. And if you do not know how to unblock any websitethere may be problems with accessing the site. Fortunately, there are many programs that can change your geolocation. One of the most popular is VPN. For example, a recent article was about the menopause. Sadly, on free stock image sites women over the age of 40 are barely represented. Most of the girls that appear in the search could be the daughters of women in their 40s.
It gets even worse if you want a photo of a manager, boss or business owner who just happens to be female.
Where are all the photos of women over 40? Real women, living real lives?
I see plenty of us on the streets, in supermarkets, in bars, pubs, restaurants, galleries and shops. Increasingly we spend a ificant amount of our time online. And the images and messages we consume online are a powerful influence on the way we view the world. And the online world we inhabit is hungry for images — images used by news sites, websites,social media and blogs, like ours. Many of these photographs are sourced from free stock image sites. Or even 40 or So what can we do to redress the balance?
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Sites like Unsplash can only make available images that have been ed. And photographers are free to choose and shoot their own preferred subjects. For us, a start is acknowledging the lack of representation. Perhaps with more awareness, photographers can choose to shoot more images of older women and more BAME and disabled people too. And stock image resource sites could actively request more of these images, to ensure a broad representation is widely available.
And finally, we wanted to do one small bit ourselves right now.
And here they are. This is what real women over 40 look like. To start, this is me.
Where are the photos of real women over 40?
What price can you put on the wisdom that hopefully! Women of my age used to be called crones and in communities we were revered for our wisdom. My Instagram is iamcoachkrissi. Here I am doing one of my favourite things reading Agatha Christie on my own! I have three hidden disabilities.
Photo by my wife Sarah. Not a professional picture but it definitely sums me up! It just takes a bit longer for my face to wake up in the mornings than the rest of me! I am 49 and I own my own marketing company, Push Creativity. I own Yellow Door Talent Development and I specialise in leadership and sales training across the service sector.
I employ my best friend, Ruth, who is bloody amazing and my right-hand woman, and I also have a super team of associates including a friend, Roxanne, who I was at school with from age eight! Next year Roxanne and I are starting to do some pro-bono work in secondary schools doing a programme by Brene Brown which helps build the courage and resilience of young people.
Feels like a really nice meaningful thing to do when the rest of my work is very commercial. My portfolio includes blogging at Business for Mums.
The mystery of the disappearing ‘older’ women
My name is Rebecca Levene, I am 42 and I am a career change confidence coach for mums. I de bespoke wedding stationery and paper goods. I started it aged 60 after a complete change of career. My business is Ellie and the Rubester Papercuts and I am lucky to be constantly surrounded by wonderful women over I am a digital marketing and e-commerce specialist based in West Sussex.
I help small and niche businesses improve their profitability and visibility online by utilising appropriate social media, funnels, sales channels, website platforms, optimisations and management systems. We need more diverse images of women in the media, in stock photo libraries, in fact everywhere. I am the mum of three daughters and I want them to aspire to be themselves and not feel the need to airbrush or filter themselves.
I am a personal coach at Quietosophy and I help quiet professionals become free from stress and overwhelm and learn to use their voice on their own terms through expert, one-to-one coaching and courses. This is on a good day with a bit of make up and nice lighting!
I am 43 and Delia is Business Clan is a one stop shop for business consultancy and professional services.
We help businesses grow by providing knowledge, expertise and implementation services all under one roof. Together we deliver all the essential services larger organisations take for granted and small businesses struggle to find. I am 45 and am a Senior Manager in an Orthopaedic Device company, which is a very male dominated environment.
This is what women over 40 years old look like
I have competed in the fitness industry, have modelled on fitness shoots, and am also a qualified life coach, so I do believe in learning new skills and knowledge to develop yourself as you mature. I have two boys aged 9 and 11, and have been married for 15 years. Life at 45 is good! You can find me on Instagram.
When you say those words you probably imagine a lady in a suit or a lady wearing a tightly fitted body con dress and heels like in the boardroom of the Apprentice! So much so that I was inspired to set up my own business making cosy accessories for dogs five years ago with my company Slumbering Hound. I spent many years working as a draughtsperson in a very male-dominated industry here I did feel a little invisible.
Then at 45 I took a career change and set up my own handmade business, the Cosy Canine Company.
I de and make gorgeous and practical accessories for dog owners. This is me at the Flourish Fusion. A conference for handmade sellers held in New York earlier this year. I work with business owners to get them the answers they need about their target customers — and how to grow as a result.
I get to be curious for a living, which is lots of fun! One of a Kind Club is a contemporary jewellery brand aimed to inspire confidence and celebrate individuality through fun statement pieces that make an impact. Each item is deed and handcrafted by me. After a long career in advertising I have finally turned my love of jewellery into a living. For years I fitted in jewellery making courses around my full time career, using my skills to transform my work outfits, making them funky and distinctive. I work freelance for a huge range of clients including museums, galleries and festivals.
40 over 40 – germany's most inspiring women
I chose this photo as it represents me and my work. I help small businesses get clear on their high-level brand message and niche so that the rest of their marketing works better. I am a bilingual voice actor and language producer based in the UK, and constantly have fingers in many very interesting pies! My day to day work includes voicing super cool adverts, cartoons and games in English and Portuguese, and being the Brazilian voice in places like The Houses of Parliament and Strawberry Field, for example.
To top it up, I also work a lot with Football, and have been the interpreter for Brazilian National Team in the UK in multiple occasions. As a photographer this has inspired me to think about shooting stock images of older women! By gaining clarity on values, purpose, strengths, passions, and the kind of life they want to create, career changers are able to identify their personal measures of success and use these to confidently choose and achieve their new direction.
I turned 43 at the beginning of October and am going into my third year of self-employment.
I am a social media manager that works with SMEs, charities and social enterprises. Marketing from West London. I feel very young as a nurse of 43, and mum of a five-year old although some days feel less young! I am Esther Wane. I left my investment banking career just over nine years ago to follow my childhood dreams of being an actor and a writer.
I am now an award winning audiobook narrator of over titles, where I get to play ALL the characters and have a lot of fun. For me life really did begin at 40!