I want to share the story of my lovely fellow artist, studio mate, super mama and friend, Emily Schwank of Raincliffs Photography.
Em works tirelessly to support her family – shooting families, weddings, and fine art images – as professional photographer. She is perhaps best known for her work photographing children, especially her own. They are beautiful, innocent, playful, deep and inspiring images of her brood. She makes no excuses for how she and her husband are raising their five incredible kids.
In the last week, someone (maybe more) has targeted her social media accounts, these are accounts that she uses daily to promote her business, part of her livelihood. It appears there’s someone out there who would rather report her accounts to Instagram and Facebook than simply unfriend or unfollow and it seems to the many who support her to be a personal attack.
While heartbreaking to experience and, as a friend, to watch, there’s something really great that has come out of this. The number of people coming to Emily’s defense with their kind words in recent days is truly remarkable. Additionally, Emily has shown herself to be resilient and I’m proud of her for it. She posted this on Facebook earlier today (after getting her account back):
Well, here is my official statement. I want to take a moment to explain exactly what has happened in the last week. First I was thrown off of Instagram for inappropriate images. I am permanently deleted from from Instagram and at this point it doesn’t even look like I can open a new account. My account was public, as I use it for work and to share my art work. Then one day later, I was reported on my personal Facebook account.This account is locked down which means, in all honesty, someone I am FB friends with reported me. Then last night an image on business page, Raincliffs Photography, had an image reported. It’s the one of Alice playing Duck Duck Goose that Chris posted below. My Raincliffs page is public and anyone might have reported this image. FB locked me out for 12 hours.
It is certainly hard to not take this personally and to not try to point fingers and there is no question I feel attacked. As a woman, an artist, a mother– I feel as though I always have to work have to get my voice — my work — out there and taken seriously . So yes. This hurts. A lot. But here’s the deal. I’m DONE with pain. I can only hope people who don’t like my work, my message and/or me just stay away. I won’t, I CAN’T stop doing what I’m doing and I feel even more motivated to do so. All of your words of love and support mean so very much to me… more than you can imagine.
Let us all go into world and Do No Harm… But Take NO SHIT.
Love to you all. And thank you, thank you for standing by me.”
Alice playing Duck Duck Goose… the image in question.
So what’s the takeaway? Be the amazing artist that you are and take no shit from anyone.