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Featured Article

A Worthy Project

Article by Bree O'Brien

Photography by Shannon Beauclair

Originally published in Kirkland Lifestyle

Meet Shannon Beauclair, the creator of the Worthy Project - for which she photographed 40 women over the age of 40, ranging from 40 to 90 years old.  Beauclair says, “As a photographer, I like to have the focus be on my subjects,” and loves for her clients to have physical, tangible portraits that are true art There can be a lot of emotion that goes along with a photo shoot of this type, but Beauclair wanted these sessions to be fun and depict women as the stars of the show, worthy of being seen. 

To Beauclair, the portraits are also a legacy. She asks clients to consider, “What photos, when you pass away, will your children fight over?” Photographs are an important part of her own family’s history, and Beauclair says, “I feel lucky that portraits and photography were important to my dad’s mother, so they all had portraits taken and preserved. When I had children, I made sure to take photos and videos of their lives. The photo is tangible evidence that someone was here on earth and loved.”

Beauclair does all her own editing, and says that when she received the Worthy Project portraits back from the printer, she was in awe. Even after viewing them so much during the shooting and editing process, the final results stunned her. Each photo conveyed the essence of each woman, some of the subjects even started crying when they saw their photos. It turns out, these shoots and photos helped the women feel seen.

Beauclair has philanthropic aims, so she personally donated $40 for every client to the Susan G. Komen Foundation, and used her Microsoft matching program to double that amount.  About 2/3 through the project she was diagnosed with a rare form of cancer and during medical leave had to reschedule nine of her clients while she recovered from surgery.  Then she lost her full-time role at Microsoft while on leave.  She was able to recover enough to finish her photoshoots, and celebrates the subjects and their stories in a Worthy Magazine that she has put together.

Beauclair has started her next endeavor, The BARE Project, in which she’ll photograph 30 women over the age of 30, encouraging them to take authentic portraits in a fine art style.  And celebrating who they are today. This project's philanthropy is benefitting The Melanoma Research Foundation, in memory of a friend's son. Beauclair’s overarching mission to make women feel beautiful and worthy, as they are right now, continues.

  • The photographer, Shannon Beauclair