Photographer Discusses the Sexual Harassment She Receives While Working at Weddings
Some things Kim Williams noted in her now-viral post included men grabbing her neck on the dance floor and unwanted touches
by Laura Hampson
A wedding photographer’s Instagram post has gone viral after she shared all the things men did and said to her at the events she photographed in 2021.
Brighton-based Kim Williams posted slides to her Instagram page titled: “Things men did to me at weddings in 2021”.
One wedding photographer has had enough of her personal boundaries being violated, so she turned to the internet to speak up about it. However, the woman soon realized that she touched upon something big — a problem the whole industry suffers from.
Kim Williams is a wedding photographer and videographer based in Brighton, United Kingdom. She shoots about 45 to 50 ceremonies per year, and she (Link): told Insider she loves her work.
Except for one thing. She hates the way some men treat her. And we’re not talking about smirks and winks. No no, they go as far as asking for her number in the middle of speeches and repeatedly touching her without consent.
…A few days ago, she made an Instagram post, describing all the ways men have crossed the line coming on to her while she was simply doing her job
Williams first noticed that her work can feel uncomfortable when she’s photographing dance floors.
“When I started shooting weddings and was covering a lot of dance floors and big groups of cis-het men around alcohol, a lot of the time I didn’t feel hugely safe,” she revealed, explaining that some men would touch her without consent or try to ask her out.
Furthermore, men at weddings would frequently “mansplain” things to her, or defer to her male staff members.
Williams added that male peers she worked weddings with were also guilty of this type of behavior.
“I went through some really horrendous things, such as a photographer clicking at me all day and refusing to learn my name,” she said.
He then proceeded to ask her to take a selfie with him, and later told Williams he was sending it to his wife because “she knows I have a thing for brunettes.”
“I don’t believe it’s women’s problem to solve,” she said. “I think if the men doing the harassing were listening to women, there would be no more harassment because we ask them to stop every single day.”
Williams hopes that sharing her story can lead to industry-wide change that ensures other female and non-binary wedding vendors feel safer at work.
…Sam Docker, who has been in the industry for 9 years now, and has shot weddings all over the UK, Europe, and internationally, is one of Kim’s biggest supporters.
“I’ve heard stories of sexism at weddings before, this isn’t new, but I think in response to Kim’s post around male violence during last year, it made me realize I’d been a little naive towards the situation,” Docker told Bored Panda.
“I knew it happened, but Kim’s post highlighted two things:
1) just how severe and extreme some of the abuse can be (Kim’s experiences and the DMs I’ve received from other female photographers detailing their own personal stories have been, quite frankly, shocking and uncomfortable to read), and
2) I was most certainly naive towards the frequency of these experiences.”
However, from speaking to Kim and others, Docker found out there’s a similar incident at almost every single wedding.
“These are not isolated cases that happen every now and then to a few female colleagues. These are constant and regular assaults on working women, women who should be allowed to feel safe doing the job of which they are being paid to do, they should not, and never be harassed or assaulted at work,” he explained.
…According to Docker, even though this issue affects us all, more men need to recognize this behavior and start calling it out as unacceptable.
…Williams started the hashtag #handsoffwedding for other wedding photographers to use if they want to share them
…She also shared a series of tips in order to help couples to make their wedding a safe place to work…