Flora Maclean’s photography of women stands out

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There are many photographers who are making women the focus of their portfolios. With a visually driven, Instagram-focused kind of feminism being prevalent among millennials, young women are taking control of the way they are portrayed online, increasing the visibility of marginalised demographics, and subverting the male gaze. In this sea of images, Flora Maclean is a rare photographer who stands out. Her work has both a timeless quality and a relevance to the contemporary time. There is a depth to her images that is difficult to communicate in words. In her professional work, she primarily takes on women as her subject. Her rich and prolific Instagram profile includes snaps of the urban landscape, fleeting glimpses of the Maclean’s environment. She quietly takes note of poetic compositions, street-side symmetries, and evocative shadows around her.

Flora Maclean gained recognition as a photographer with “Every Hero Counts,” a series about women’s football clubs in the UK. The lack of gender inequality in the coverage, funding, and respect for women’s football is blatant, and this series presents an intimate, gritty, and diverse picture of the sport. Maclean is a football player herself, which helped her navigate the space with an insider’s perspective of the game. There is a sense of trust, a lack of self-consciousness in the models she photographs across her portfolio, that betrays her undoubtedly sensitive and considerate personality. Her editorial and fashion work often features glimpses of the body — an elegantly bent elbow, an arched back, an extended hand. Yet, her subjects do not feel fragmented or truncated. Instead, I get a sense that we are seeing a body in the midst of an action, a woman in movement, someone who has agreed to let us into her life as she carries on with freedom and purpose, paying us no mind. Maclean’s images possess the tactile grainy quality and brilliant colour of film. This adds to their transportive quality. I urge you to spend some time on her Instagram page. She is represented by seven six.