While photographing First Women, Anita is continuing to document the lives of ordinary women who are busy doing “everyday” things as well as those ordinary women who are engaged upon extraordinary endeavours, to set the 100 iconic portraits of First Women in context.
Anita’s work, ‘Golfing Sisters In the ladies locker room, Royal Mid-Surrey’, was chosen as one of the 60 portraits to be considered out of 6000 images submitted for the prestigious Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize 2010. This prize showcases the work of some of the most talented emerging young photographers from around the world, alongside that of established professionals, photography students and gifted amateurs.
Anita talks about why the portrait works so well, “I met the sisters at my best friend’s father’s funeral – they were so full of life and vitality, I just knew I wanted to photograph them for the documentary section of ’First Women’. I wanted to try and capture their zest for life.
The sisters have been members of their golf club for over 40 years, in their words they ‘love the game’ so we decided that ‘Mid-Surrey’ should be the venue. I had anticipated that I would make the portrait out on the course; it was a beautiful spring evening. But we needed to collect their clubs and shoes, so they took me into the impressive ladies locker room first, whilst they changed shoes we chatted and I realised that they were more relaxed. I asked them if they would pose in front of the mirror, a little unsure at first, they soon agreed and stood confidently next to each other, totally at home in their environment. I have been a photographer for over 30 years and I had a very strong feeling that this set up would be the one.”
In the summer of 2013 she was commissioned to shoot four iconic new portraits on behalf of the North East region’s science and industry museum in Newcastle. These were unveiled at the Discovery Museum. The portraits are part of an exhibition entitled Trailblazers, exploring the achievements of women, both living and historic, who have made a significant contribution to the science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) industries. Anita is also planning to feature at least one of the four women, Jane Atkinson, the first woman in the world to manage a blast furnace; 9,200 tonnes of liquid iron at 1700 degrees, in the First Women Collection.