LIFESTYLE

Mum's Powerful Photo Project 'Strong Is The New Pretty' Proves Girls Are Fabulous Just As They Are

09/04/2015 11:11 BST | Updated 09/04/2015 14:59 BST

From pink princess toys as toddlers, to beauty blogs as teens, today's girls are bombarded with images that tell them how to be "pretty".

But in a new project titled Strong Is The New Pretty, Atlanta-based photographer Kate Parker shows that, in reality, girls are "loud, athletic, fearless, messy, joyous and frustrated".

"I wanted to celebrate these girls as they are, not how females are expected to be," Parker tells HuffPost UK Lifestyle. "Being pretty or perfect is not important. Being who they are is."

soccer girls

Parker didn't set out with an agenda when she began to photograph her daughters and their friends - she just wanted to document their childhood and practice using her camera.

But she soon realised her pictures showed something special about what it really means to be a girl.

"After about a year or so, it organically grew into something different. The images changed," she says. "I started to see patterns and recognise that the images where the girls were authentically captured were the strongest images.

"The images that showed the girls as they genuinely are were my favorites. After seeing this, I started to shoot with that in mind."

The project now aims to show the girls involved, and other women, that they don't have to confirm to society's beauty standards.

"There's a lot of pressure for girls and women to look a certain way and act in certain manner," Parker says.

"I wanted to let my daughters know that who they naturally are is enough."

Strong Is The New Pretty

Visit Kate Parker's website, Facebook page and Twitter to see more of her photography.

Strong Is The New Pretty

SEE ALSO:

Photo Series Shows How Ridiculous Our Beauty Standards Are

This Video Will Change The Way You Think About Acting 'Like A Girl'