Photographer’s ‘Atlas Of Beauty’ Series Shows Diverse Beauty Of Women Around The World


The definition of beauty is something that society has struggled with and debated for many, many years. Who has the final say? Is it the fashion industry that dictates the trends? Or advertising? Or God? Do individual people get to define beauty on their own terms? At what point did beauty become such a highly regarded trait in women, specifically?

When you look around the world and see that in each country, the definitions vary even more, as we have seen in certain experiments undertaken by various journalists looking to add another layer to this ongoing discussion. These women asked digital artists in a number of different countries to photoshop their appearances according to their own country’s standards of beauty, and the differences were undeniable.

Although many of us are familiar with the concept of diversity in beauty, sadly we are not yet seeing this in an overwhelming way in fashion, beauty, media and advertising. The change is slow, but it is certainly being pushed forward by the voices of everyday people. One woman who is on a mission to be part of that change is Romanian photographer Mihaela Noroc, whose series ‘The Atlas of Beauty’ has captivated international news media headlines.


To date, she has traveled to more than 45 countries and taken beautiful, captivating portraits of women around the world in their natural environments with the aim to break down existing ideals of beauty standards.

“Through my photography I want to capture that feeling of warmth and serenity which comes from the eyes of a woman and can balance sometimes the negativity we see in the media. Many people from all around the world face discrimination just because they have a certain color, religion, ethnicity or because they are women. I think beauty is diversity and it can teach us to be more tolerant. My goal is to continue for many years and capture beauty in all countries of the globe, if possible, making this Atlas an inspiration for all women that try to be themselves, natural and authentic,” says Mihaela on the website’s description.

In early 2015 she launched a crowd-funding campaign to raise money for travel and accommodation costs, visas, food, insurance, photography equipment and production of the Atlas itself. After receiving more than her original amount requested, Mihaela was able to travel even more and add to her growing collection.


“My goal is to show that beauty is everywhere and is not about race, money or trends, but more about being yourself, natural and authentic. Today more and more women feel a pressure to look in a certain way, but I think we are beautiful, if we treasure what makes us unique,” she wrote on her campaign page about the reasons she embarked on this journey.

“Now millions of people will see my photos and together we can send a powerful message to the world. We can show that beauty is in our differences and we should all be proud of ourselves,” she added.

Although her campaign was launched in 2015, the core of her message is even more relevant in the world today when we look around at all the horror, evil, violence, and hatred that is growing. The message of love, unity and togetherness has never been more needed.

While the majority of women Mihaela has photographed so far have been of similar age, she plans to expand the series by including more age groups in the future. On her website she explains that she became interested in photography after growing up with an artist father who influenced her love of creativity. Once she discovered photography at 16, and began traveling the world as a backpacker, the two interests became intertwined and she has never looked back.


Although she has received a lot of media attention for her work (so far ‘The Atlas Of Beauty’ has been featured on CNN, Oprah Winfrey Network’s ‘Super Soul Sunday’, BBC, The Guardian, The Huffington Post and more), Mihaela says she is still a normal person and lives a simple life, with an added goal.

“I work hard for my dream, and, by chance, this dream is very appreciated by mass media. But there are millions of women in the world, that work even harder for their goals and maybe their activities don’t seem so spectacular from the outside. I hope I will have the chance to photograph some of them for the project, capturing their inner and outer beauty and showing them how special they are,” she explains.

So not only is her series blowing the boundaries of beauty standards as we know them to traditionally be, but she is also giving visual representation to various women around the world.

There is something so calm yet powerful about each of her images we have seen online. Today, if you are looking for a respite from the heaviness in the world, we encourage you to check out ‘The Atlas Of Beauty’ to remind you of what is good and positive.





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