I met Danika on Instagram after I came across an amazing exhibition that she started called “Girls Don’t Cry”. Based on personal experiences, the series focuses on love and heartbreak and I was honestly so impressed so I had to reach out to her for the fourteenth episode of The Future Is Female! On another note, Happy International Women’s Day to all the women out there! Continue to be the author of your own story and your own hero. Let’s get started!
(LJS) Hey Danika! Thank you so much for taking part in this and Happy International Women’s Day!
(DM) Hey Laila! You’re welcome and Happy International Women’s Day to you too!
(LJS) What does being a 21st century woman mean to you?
(DM) To me, being a 21st century woman means having more freedom and a voice to express myself. Although there is still inequality between men and women I feel like my generation has come a long way. I haven’t always been taken seriously as a ‘female photographer’, however there have been amazing opportunities I have been given for being a woman.
(LJS) Your photography is insane by the way. What barriers have you faced as a woman today?
(DM) Thanks! I rarely experience extreme cases of sexism however I feel like I have met some men who think they are entitled to certain things because I am a female. I dislike not being taken seriously because of my appearance. I have also experienced the whole ‘I didn’t know you were a female!’ or ‘you’re good for a female photographer!’ scenarios when I use to remain anonymous on my Instagram Sirius Film. It’s like some people are still shocked when women are really good at something.
(LJS) It’s honestly so shocking to know that we live in a world where we’re expected not to be great. Do you recognize yourself as a feminist? If so, what type of feminist are you?
(DM) I am a feminist. I want men and women to be seen as equal. I do not think that one gender is better than the other. I just want women to be able to make their own choices, to be treated fairly and to express themselves how they desire. Feminism is so much more than an aesthetic and an image and a lot of people need to realize that.
(LJS) That’s beautiful I completely agree with you. When did you first recognize the fact that gender inequality exists?
(DM) Probably from being younger and in school when we would play make-believe games. The girls would stay home cleaning and looking after the ‘kids’ and the house, whereas the boys would go to pretend work and go out with their other male companions. The gender roles have always been there even when we didn’t even realiZe it.
(LJS) The fact that gender roles are indoctrinated in us from a young age is a problem that cannot be ignored. When you’re faced with barriers because of your gender, how do you overcome them?
(DM) Honestly, it’s a huge issue. I wouldn’t even want to work or associate with someone who didn’t recognize my worth because I am a female, so I believe that is their loss. I’d rather better myself by doing things on my own or working with open minded people.
(LJS) I couldn’t agree with you more. What is your greatest achievement so far?
(DM) Having my exhibition ‘Girls Don’t Cry’ and it being supported by Converse. I worked very hard on my project and I’m so happy at the feedback it has received and the people that have been inspired from it.
(LJS) Honestly, it’s such an inspiring exhibition. What does “The Future Is Female” mean to you?
(DM) Thank you! It means a world where all women from every race and ethnicity are seen as equal to men, and that we are given the opportunities we work for and deserve, and are respected and treated fairly.
Danika is a photographer and film makes who uses real life experience to showcase the truth in human emotions. As a visual artist, she aspires to influence the world that we live in through her artistic ability and expression through writing. She is also the face behind Sirius Film, a highly engaged platform on social media.