Boobs and Bikinis
When we came back from New Zealand it took me months and months to find a job – finding a creative, art-oriented job in Cornwall is quite tough. I wasn’t really getting anywhere with all my applications, and I wanted to keep my productivity up in that time. I started The Slideshow Magazine partly to keep a running portfolio – I wanted to challenge myself to produce something new each month – but the main motivation for it came from the fact that there was only one surf mag out there aimed at women – ‘Surf Girl’ -and it’s all just boobs and bikinis.
There’s an issue for women in surfing of how we’re represented. It’s taken a long time, but the standard of female competitive surfing is now really high, but even women in competition are made by to wear these tiny bikinis by their sponsors. It really infuriates the people I know who surf. In this country you’re not likely to surf in a bikini at any point. We don’t surf perfect waves and it’s not hot all the time. Actually it’s not particularly practical to surf in a bikini at any time. In New Zealand I used to wear a long sleeved rash vest and bikini bottoms – but they’re a pain in the neck because you’re always frightened they’re just going to come off. I’m about to go to Nicaragua surfing and it’ll be too hot for a wetsuit. In the past I also got really bruised knees from not having anything on, so I’m trying to find these surf leggings that you can get now which protect your legs.
I used to buy Surf Girl magazine basically because it was the only one. The photography is good and I like some of the design elements, but every time I bought it I ended up just getting so infuriated. Then I started to meet other girls who surfed and the ‘boobs and bikinis’ way that female surfing is presented became our main topic of conversation – we’d be absolutely slating it every month. It was just so annoying. So I wanted to produce something that I would want to read – that would represent the reality of surfing for women and give us something to relate to. The magazine is free and we’re always looking for contributors if anyone is interested…
The Slideshow Mag can be found here: https://theslideshowmag.wordpress.com/
And if you’d like to support what Gemma is doing, please ‘like’ her Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Slideshow/251251185002143?fref=ts