About the Project

How do you react when someone asks, “What do you do?” A shrug, a flush of pride, a stab of regret, a twinge of guilt or shame? Does it feel too complicated to get into, or too dull to merit attention?

We started this project because we both had a fraught relationship with this question, and we suspected that most of the women we know—especially, but not exclusively, fellow mothers—did, too. As longtime friends and former coworkers, we were familiar with each other’s stories. But wouldn’t it be interesting, we thought, to seek out the stories of more women—to catch a glimpse of what was behind the practiced answers they give at cocktail parties or the title on their business card? Wouldn’t it be gratifying to capture and share not only their current perspectives (which we know are constantly shifting), but their beautifully alive faces as they discussed these sometimes difficult but always engaging questions:

What do you do?

How did you come to be doing it?

How does it shape or reflect your identity?

What role has gender played in your life and work choices?

What would you change if you could?

Can you?

 
 

About the Women

This project started with our friends, friends of friends, colleagues—people we felt comfortable approaching to sit for a photo session and an intimate conversation, usually in their office or living room. We’re eager to meet new subjects and hear new stories (see our Contact page). But we recognize that this is not, and can’t be, a fully representative sample of “Women” or even “New York Women.” Still, let us hear from you, and we’ll see how big we can get.

 

 

About Us

Shannon.jpg
 

SHANNON BARR (words) is a writer, singer-actress, former marketing executive, mother of two, and wife of one. She is (still) working on her first novel. It’s complicated.

 
Sharon Credit2.jpg
 

SHARON SCHUUR (pictures) is a photographer, former art director, a wife and the mother of two teenagers. She has always carried both a camera and a pencil.