Posted: Mon 30th Oct 2023

Mold-based photographer counters Halloween scar trends with ‘Kintsugi Beauty’

News and Info from Deeside, Flintshire, North Wales
This article is old - Published: Monday, Oct 30th, 2023

In an age where image is everything, embracing imperfections is a bold act of self-love.

But Halloween has seen a growing trend where people use makeup to imitate scars, which unintentionally downplays the real stories of those with actual scars.

In Wales, though, a touching alternative has emerged: Kintsugi Beauty.

Created by Mold-based photographer Ceridwen Hughes, founder of Same but Different, the project recently featured Phyllida Swift, CEO of Face Equality International.

The idea comes from Kintsugi or “golden joinery”. It’s a Japanese art where broken pottery is fixed with golden glue.

This powerful metaphor captures the project’s spirit: finding beauty in both physical and emotional scars and highlighting their unique tales.

Kintsugi Beauty isn’t just countering the Halloween trend of faking scars.

It showcases scars as marks of strength, endurance, and uniqueness.

Rather than hiding scars, they’re proudly shown. This includes stories like Phyllida’s, who got facial scars from a car crash in Ghana in 2015.

Now, as the leader of Face Equality International, Phyllida is changing how scars are viewed, promoting facial equality, and taking on the media’s often negative depictions of facial differences.

For Phyllida, Halloween is especially hard for those with facial differences. “Our faces are copied as costumes that are taken off at day’s end. Kids are told our faces are ‘scary’. I dream of a world where this damaging story stops, where our value isn’t based on looks,” she says strongly.

With Kintsugi Beauty, Ceridwen and her team use photography to make scars shine, focusing on the person’s strength, not their weak points.

“I have a son with a facial difference. Many have judged him by how he looks and made assumptions. I aimed for a project that praised differences and showed beauty, helping people feel proud of their appearance, no matter what society says.

By showing their scars artistically, they take back their story and set their own beauty standards,” said Ceridwen. “With Same but Different, which uses art for good, we aim to give people a louder voice. There’s no better time to spotlight beauty like this.”

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