SHINING WOMAN PROJECT #cancerbeauty by Hideka Tonomura

is creating a portrait project dedicated to women who fight cancer

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About SHINING WOMAN PROJECT #cancerbeauty by Hideka Tonomura

My name is Hideka Tonomura, a freelance photographer based in Tokyo, Japan. I hope you can help to support the "SHINING WOMAN PROJECT"—my portrait project dedicated to women who fight cancer.

Having experienced cervical cancer diagnosis and treatment myself in 2019, I was admitted into the gynaecology department of a hospital specialized in cancer. There, I witnessed how there are so many other women who were also bravely fighting against cancer in their lives. Even if they lose their uterus, breasts, and hair, they strive to live and continue to shine as a woman. I was deeply moved by their radiance—I felt as if I could witness how truly it is like to be a woman. Hoping to capture such radiance and help promote the importance of early diagnosis, I started this project to take portraits of women who are fighting cancer.

My first goal is to photograph 100 women in Japan. So far, I have travelled to different areas in Tokyo, Kanagawa, Gunma, Fukuoka and Hokkaido and took portraits of 20 different people. Currently, I have to temporarily slow down the project due to the coronavirus outbreak, but many people from different areas of Japan who are interested in participating have contacted me, waiting to be photographed. I am looking forward to meeting them as soon as possible—some of them may not be able to wait too long. I will be very grateful if you can consider becoming a patron of this project.   

Hideka Tonomura

Artist Statement for SHINING WOMAN PROJECT #cancerbeauty

For women, losing their womb, ovaries, breasts, and hair is extremely depressing.
Feelings of despair and madness.
Young women who dream of giving birth.
Women who are receiving infertility treatment.
Due to their cancer, they are not only losing their uterus, ovaries, and breasts but are also simultaneously losing their dream of having their own child.
The fear of losing their female organs brings a premonition of death to their femininity.
It feels like hell for them to accept such fears.
Nevertheless, women still put on lipstick, nice clothes, and wigs, and head out to their battlefield—the outside world.
Verbal abuse and prejudice.
Unawareness can be truly horrifying.
Disappointed in myself for hating people who use mean words,
while I myself may unconsciously have used mean words as well.
It can happen to me as a woman, and to men, to their loved ones.
I want to change how people perceive female illnesses and cancer patients.
I want the world to become a place where women can live more comfortably so that they can continue to treasure their everyday life and feel free to go outside, without having to experience any verbal abuse just because they have lost their breasts, wombs, ovaries, and hair.
Femininity is not determined by one’s body parts. Everything is a testament to choosing to live.
Women can always turn despair into strength and continue to let their beauty shine out.
The true meaning of shining lies in the power with which we fight for our lives.
Women who dream of seeing their children grow up.
Women who dream of becoming an adult and fall in love.
Anytime,
Anywhere,
Any case.
The essence of life is always beautiful.
All women are shining and I will continue to capture their radiance.

—Hideka Tonomura
By becoming a patron, you'll instantly unlock access to 35 exclusive posts
62
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1
Link
4
Writings
By becoming a patron, you'll instantly unlock access to 35 exclusive posts
62
Images
1
Link
4
Writings

Recent posts by SHINING WOMAN PROJECT #cancerbeauty by Hideka Tonomura

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