International Women’s Day Photo Exhibit 2016

by | Mar 8, 2016

Thai school girls on a field trip
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Last updated on November 20th, 2021

Featured Image: Thai School Girls on a Field Trip / Photo credit: Betsy Wuebker

Dedicated to All Our Daughters and Granddaughters

By Evelyn Hannon, Founder, JourneyWoman

I recently spied a playful sign in a craft market that read, ‘Who Runs The World… Girls Do!’ Now, of course, I understand full well that girls do not, indeed, run the world. Men do. That’s a fact!

Yet, I bought one of those signs for each one of my granddaughters. Why? To inspire them to work hard and to demand gender equality they need, want, and deserve.

As I add the finishing touches to our ‘2016 Journeywoman International Woman’s Day Photography Exhibit,’ I dedicate this year’s compilation to all daughters and granddaughters wherever they live in this great big world. My hope is that with time this young generation of females will bring us closer to a place of equal opportunity for women and for men. As Mothers, Aunts, and Grandmothers we believe in them and will do everything we can to support them.

Curating this annual International Woman’s Day tribute to females worldwide is my labour of love. I am indebted to the bloggers and photographers who each year are never too busy to answer my call for photo submissions. The entrants range from professionals who earn their living taking photos, to photography hobbyists, to those of us who use our photography to illustrate our travel stories. Each is equally valid. Each offers a personal point of view. Every one a mini-story of a woman somewhere in this great big world.

I met this beautiful woman in India. Her modest home consisting of dirt floors and walls was spotless and she beamed with pride as she welcomed me inside. I watched her squat by the meagre fire to prepare chapati; it was magical to watch her hands swiftly slapping the dough to prepare it for the hot skillet. The result was quite possibly the most delicious bread I will ever taste, prepared with such care and love.

Photographer: Paula Roy Website:
Instagram: @paulajro

I was in Myanmar where I hiked to a hill tribe for a homestay with a local family. When I arrived I met this visiting grandmother and baby whose name translated to ‘Diamond Star’. After playing the universal game of Peekaboo, Diamond was as taken with me as I was with her. When Grandma bundled her up on her back to leave, I captured this photo.

Photographer: Jane Canapini Website:
Instagram: @grownuptravels

These lovely bridesmaids from Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina, are sisters of the bride and groom respectively. The small wedding party walked into the restaurant where we were lunching for photographs. All eyes were on the bride except mine.

Photographer: Betsy Wuebker Website:
Instagram: @passingthrucom

My guide and I were visiting Bhutan’s Chimi Lhakhang, a temple on a hill in the Punakha Valley. Young monks and children were playing in the grass surrounding the temple. One group of three children approached me to take photos of them making silly faces and showing them on the camera display. This quickly evolved into a silliest face contest. This girl had no problem with me taking her photo, but she wasn’t interested in making silly faces with her friends.

Photographer: Matt Gibson Website:
Instagram: @xpattmatt

This photo that I treasure was taken in a remote village in Uganda where I did volunteer work last year. Three Mammas, with their babies on their backs, posed for me on their way back from working in the fields.

Photographer: Ruth Johnston Website:
Instagram: @exploramum

Having been given a new camera, I drafted my friend Kat to help me test out its features on the shores of Nevis (my current island home). Designed to capture fast-paced movement and fleeting moments, we decided to mess around with the camera and water balloons to see what we could achieve with the setup. I love how I was able to capture the look of delight on Kat’s face as the water exploded!

 Photographer: Charli Moore Website:
Instagram: @WanderlustersUK

I live in Bangalore and this photo was taken when I visited a temple in Harihara. I found these two women chatting, so completely immersed in their world. Be it urban, buzzing cities or small towns like this one, women everywhere bond, share and support in each other in myriad ways. As a female, I see myself in this picture.

Photographer: Usha B N
Instagram: @ushabn08

I photographed this woman when I visited with the Karan Tribe in Chang Mei, Northern Thailand. This neck ring adornment was started when the girls were five or six years old and the neck grows longer as additional rings are added with each passing year. Legend has it that this was done to make the women unattractive so they would be less likely to be captured by slave traders. I noticed young girls in the village who did not have this ring adornment. Perhaps this means that the practice is dying out.

Photographer: Vicki Garside
Instagram: @maketimetoseetheworld

Travelling through the Rize Ayder Valley in Turkey we spent one evening in a small country chalet. The next morning we received a lovely treat. This young woman was part of a troupe of folk dancers that entertained us in the very rustic dining room. She was absolutely stunning and graciously posed for photographs.

Photographer: Evelyn Hannon
Instagram: @EvelynHannon

I took this photo of a woman preparing bread in Istanbul, Turkey. She was sitting in the front window of a restaurant. It worked. We picked that restaurant for lunch.

Photographer: Suzanne Fluhr
Instagram: @boomeresque2

In Munich, it was a chaotic scene with thousands of people milling around enjoying the usual Oktoberfest beer, music and festivities. I spied this older pretzel lady and for a brief moment, I was reminded of my own German Grandmother. It was almost like she was there with me and that made me smile.

Photographer: Sue Reddel
Instagram: @foodtravelist

Tamang people are the largest Tibeto-Burman ethnic group within Nepal. Unlike Nepalis, who are Hindu, Tamang are Buddhist, however, their form of Buddhism incorporates many aspects of their original Bon religion, which was animistic. As such, ancestor worship and appeasing the spirits are important aspects of their form of Tibetan Buddhism. This woman I photographed has made a pilgrimage to visit Swayambhu, one of the most important Buddhist stupas in all of Nepal. She is performing the ritual of lighting candles for her deceased ancestors.

Photographer: Barbara Weibel
Instagram: @holeinthedonut

Life in the Great Rift Valley of Tanzania is harsh; the very dry climate yields little water and the Maasai people live on a diet of exclusively meat, blood, and milk. The women, highly decorated with beads draped on their necks and hanging from elongated earlobes, are usually one of many wives. This family of eleven women share one husband.

Photographer: Veronica James Website:
Instagram: @gypsynester

Peggy lives in Calistoga, California. I met her one-morning having breakfast at the local cafe. We struck up a conversation and I asked her about the murals I noticed on the side of buildings a few blocks away. She offered to walk with me and explain the art and the artist, Carlo Marchiori who often incorporates images of friends and residents into his murals. In this photo, I photographed Peggy proudly posing in front of her own image.

Photographer: Penny Sadler Website:
Instagram: @adventuresofacarryon

I took the photo while being jostled and hustled by street vendors outside the Taj Mahal Hotel in Mumbai, India. While most were young men converging on me with offers of postcards, trinkets and feathered fans, this saleswoman did not. She simply walked with measured pace back and forth among the tourists, a look of determination on her face – never smiling – her hair a bit windblown. She’s one of those people you happen upon in your travels that you can’t forget and you wish you’d have gotten to know.

Photographer: Jackie Smith Website:
Instagram: @travelnwrite

This woman was a dancer at the International Carnival of Victoria in Seychelles. What is so special about this carnival is that the acts and dancers come from top carnivals all over the world, so it’s truly an international coming together of cultures. The goal is to promote harmony that goes beyond skin colour and differing cultural beliefs, and I thought the joy on this dancer’s face represents the joyful and truly moving spirit of the carnival.

Photographer: Carol Perehudoff Website:
Instagram: @wanderingcarol

Woman in Detroit, USA at an outdoor festival dressed as Bessie Coleman. “Queen Bess” is the first female pilot of African American and Native American descent. She had to go to France first to be accepted into an aviation school. That was in 1921. So, she was also first to have an international pilot’s license.

Photographer: Elizabeth Pilar Website:
Instagram: @elizabeth_pilar

Save a Child’s Heart is an Israeli based organization that has saved the lives of over 3,700 children who needed cardiac care. These young patients arrive from Africa, South America, Europe, Asia, and throughout the Middle East. Most children travel with their moms who care for their children pre and post-surgery. I am in awe of these women. They are “on” 24/7. These moms, most quite young and never having been too far from their village…they also need friendship, support, someone to help them over the rough patches of worrying about children left behind, their own child having surgery, or just missing home. And where is it more natural for moms to bond and to let go a bit and have fun than in the kitchen. It is here they have a bit of normalcy, and being with the ladies’ time…time to let go a bit and giggle and tell “stories” and just be themselves.

Photographer: Sheila Shalhevet Website:

I was in Chiang Mai, Thailand at the annual flower festival. This three-day celebration is held every year on the first weekend of February. I was in the right place at the right time. This beautiful young woman asked ‘me’ to take a picture of ‘her.’ Lucky me!

Photographer: Mihaela Popa Website:
Instagram: @worldtravel.bug

I took this photo outside a famous mosque in Old Delhi, India. I was so moved by the strength of the woman in the photo as she carried the bricks, and by how the colors and beauty of the women’s clothes contrasted with the weight of the work.

Photographer: Lillie Marshall Website:
Instagram: @WorldLillie

At nearly 80-years-young, Aunt Nahid, has been weaving Persian rugs made from wool and silk for as long as she can remember. She is my husband’s aunt, and as the matriarch of her family, she lives in Kashan, Iran. Although she does have a template sitting on her loom, she rarely looks at it as she works. I was in awe as I watched her weave. It seemed as if she could do so with one hand tied behind her back and oh, what I would have given to make that rug my own!

Photographer: Patti Maghamfar Website:
Instagram: @oneroadatatime

This portrait of a young Israeli soldier was taken at the finish of her “up-a-mountain-overnight” exercise. I was very pleased that it was chosen to be used in the Jeep commercial that was aired during the 2016 Super Bowl. It’s a tribute to the strength of women and one of my favourite portraits from my three years of service as a military photographer.

Photographer: Asher Svidensky Website:
Instagram: @ashersvidensky

I was in Sri Lanka for a month and hired a car and driver. As we rose into the hills of the central highlands, I spotted this woman picking tea at one of the larger estates. I was able to lean out of the window as we whipped by and the second after I took this photo, I waved, and she waved back as we drove off. If I’d been able to stop I would have loved to exchange a few words with her…

Photographer: Leyla Giray Alyanak Website:
Instagram: @womenontheroadpix

Nepal’s Kathmandu is an incredible city. It’s full of life, there’s another hidden square or monument around every corner and the people are so incredibly friendly. While negotiating the maze of winding streets in the Old Town, we were inundated with hellos from passersby; left, right and then from above. These three girls smiled and waved at us as from a rooftop as we went passed. They chatted to us for a few minutes before asking us to take their picture and then their hysterical laughing began.

Photographer: Brian Barry Website:
Instagram: @WanderingOn

In my career in the kitchen, I have been yelled at by many a chef, but none can equal the steely stare of this little woman. Standing all of 4’8″ Juanita is a mother, grandmother and a plucky entrepreneur. She and her daughter run a small food stand in Puerto Morelos, Mexico. She stands on a wooden box to reach the grill, and if I weren’t a paying customer she would have tossed me and my fancy camera out on my ear. Best damn chicken in town.

Photographer: Cori Horton Website:
Instagram: @foodgypsy

This young Himba woman in Namibia is stirring corn maize into boiling water over a live fire to make mealy. While co-existing with a world that is homogenizing their clothing and culture to fit in the Western styles, many Himba prefers the traditional dress and lifestyle. This is something I greatly respect. When I photographed this girl with her silky smooth skin, her hair plaited with ocher and her beautiful collection of jewelry, I thought to myself how exquisite she looks even in the midst of the most menial of chores.

Photographer: Shara Johnson Website:

Satao Elerai Camp is situated about 10 kms from the south east corner of Amboseli National Park in Kenya. Overlooked by Mt Kilimanjaro, the camp is leased from the local Masai tribe. Their relationship is interesting. Apart from paying rent, Satao Elerai helps support the village and together they work towards conserving the land and protecting the wildlife from poachers. The Masai women here are very proud. They are happy to work with the camp and do their bit to help by making the wonderful neck pieces and earrings that they wear.

Photographer: Jenny Freedman Website:
Instagram: @atasteoftravel

A popular fashion accessory for centuries, hats are de rigeur during Carnival season in Mobile, Alabama, USA where Mardi Gras celebrations started in 1831, nearly two decades before the tradition spread to New Orleans.

Photographer: Rebecca McCormick Website:
Instagram: @gobrilliantly

It was an early Saturday morning in Canada, and we hit up the Fredericton, New Brunswick Farmer’s Market for breakfast. We followed our noses to this lovely bakery stand, where the bakers were all smiles, despite the early hour. Several loaves of bread later, we were that happy, too.

Photographer: Dr. Jessie Voigts Website:
Instagram: @wanderingeducators

While traveling throughout Tamil Nadu in southern India, we came across a traditional Athangudi tile operation on the road from Thanjavur to Madurai. This woman was preparing the large tile frames for her son, who then inserted a piece of glass and poured in a mixture of clay and concrete to make colorful patterns. Although we couldn’t speak to each other, we shared a few laughs when I tried my hand at creating a design.

Photographer: Brianne Miers Website:
Instagram: @brimiers

This is Bex, my granddaughter. She is the youngest and most mischievous in our clan. The last time she visited my home she looked around and declared, ‘Everything here is very old.’ That’s not so terrible in itself except I swear she was looking directly at ME. I have no doubt that when the time comes she will be front and center in the push for gender equality.

2016 Photo Exhibit Curator: Evelyn Hannon
Instagram: @EvelynHannon

We’ve listed the websites of all the generous people involved with this project. Please explore more of their work. You never know where that journey will take you.

Old woman with umbrella
Old woman with an umbrella
Photo Credit: Elizabeth Pilar

More on International Women’s Day

Evelyn started Journeywoman in 1994, and unknowingly became the world's first female travel blogger. She inspired a sisterhood of women, a grassroots movement, to inspire women to travel safely and well, and to connect women travellers around the world. She passed away in 2019, but her legacy lives on.

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