International Women's Day is almost upon us (March 8, for those who don't know). The day is typically a chance to celebrate the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women, and to fast-track gender equality.
Now, this is great – and vital! We constantly need to celebrate the success of strong, powerful, brave women. But for me, an average, yet-to-achieve-much (socially, economically, culturally or politically) young-adult female, International Women's Day is an opportunity to celebrate the simple little things that make up your everyday woman.
Because frankly, we rock.
So with that in mind, I'd like to encourage you, whoever you are, to check out the Instagram accounts of some amazing female artists in light of International Women's Day.
Forget your typical Insta posts: carefully-staged selfies, top-notch outfits and unrealistic body types in fancy bikinis. These clever, creative and entertaining Instagram accounts are all about revealing the raw, real, relatable parts of being a woman.
If you're a dude, use it as a chance to learn about life as a woman: I'm talking periods, mood swings and resting bitch face (which I'd like to officially rename "resting fierce face." If you're a woman, get ready to relate in a way typical Instagram posts have never let you.
Tara is using her painting qualification to create quirky little comics that depict sticky situations any woman can relate to. Her works are hilarious and light-hearted, and simultaneously encourage society to accept the parts of women that are totally normal.
My personal favorites include her representation of how hard it is to pee in a romper, her self-portrait that unashamedly celebrates grown-woman-hair-down-there, and another self-portrait featuring the feared-by-all-yet-totally-natural period stain (plus a necessary bag of Cheetos and a notebook titled "Feelings").
The comic strips are an appreciated reminder that those awkward situations you find yourself in aren't abnormal – most women have experienced them. I mean, there's a reason our mothers taught us to wear black when it's that time of the month.
And there's a beautiful comfort in knowing that other women go through the exact same things you're going through. It makes embarrassing situations a little less embarrassing.
Mari is an illustrator whose works clearly value honesty and vulnerability. She's just as relatable as Tara, voicing thoughts that usually stay sealed in our minds. For example, she has an “Attraction” wheel which includes people who like her posts, appreciate her perfume and, above all, are attracted to her.
Her “March Heart” is made up of “Disappointment in my entire wardrobe," and “Dramatic mood swings between minor temperature changes."
Some of her “Valentines” include: “The stylist who cuts my bangs perfectly,” “The old man who says 'buenos dias!' every morning” and “Everyone who has ever commented 'me too', making me feel less alone."
Me too, Mari. Me too.
Laura's style is quite different to the others. She is an illustrator who creates images of women doing ordinary things like taking out the trash, baking cakes, driving a car, hanging out and eating leftovers with an undone fly while looking fierce as hell. I'm talking power poses, death stares, attitude and the embodiment of confidence.
She makes the normal, everyday parts about being a woman seem so badass that you'll feel proud to be one. So go ahead - make like a Laura Callaghan illustration and take the garbage out in mid-heels, purple lipstick and pants that highlight your thunder thighs.
Go support these amazing artists, and be sure to give the world hell this International Women's Day!