#IWD2022: Creative Women - Tiwirayi Ndoro

28 February 2022 by Michelle

To celebrate International Women's Day on Tuesday 8th March 2022, we're hosting a series of feature interviews with dynamic, trailblazing and courageous women working in creative fields who have a connection to Lancashire. Tiwirayi Ndoro is a graduate of UCLan who now works as a fashion photographer, stylist and youth organisation director.

#IWD2022: Creative Women - Tiwirayi Ndoro

International Women's Day is an annual event that has been celebrating women since 1911.

This year's theme of #BreakTheBias continues the global call to stand up for a more equitable and inclusive world free of discrimination and stereotypes. This initiative is an opportunity to honour the women in your life and encourages us all to take action for equality, so that we can forge a gender-equal world.

Meet the first of our featured women for this year's Creative Lancashire International Women's Day campaign.

Tiwirayi Ndoro is a fashion photographer, stylist, and a director of KYSO, a non-profit organisation working to empower young people to make positive changes in their life.

Tiwi's Woke Denim Project - a conscious photo series about the modern-day fight for social justice - was commissioned by Creative Lancashire for the British Textile Biennial in 2021.

For BTB21, her work was exhibited at the Blackburn Mall, and Tiwi also co-hosted a panel discussions about Woke Denim - Style, Protest & Self-Expression from MLK to BLM, held at Blackburn Cathedral.

Tiwi, tell us a bit about you?

I graduated with a first-class degree in Fashion Promotion with Styling from the University of Central Lancashire. I’ve been freelancing now for close to 2 years and it’s been great to further explore my creativity and develop my skills.

What motivated and inspired you to do the work you do?

I’ve always been creative, and I love creating space to have important conversations. I feel that the work I do, allows me to do both of those things in different environments, making a positive impact.

Growing up I also wished, as a Black British / Zimbabwean young woman, that there was a lot more representation of us breaking boundaries and leading in different industries.

Hopefully my presence and work can inspire another young Black girls out there to aim high and achieve great things too.

Tiwi Ndoro faces camera wearing a green and yellow patterned shirt against a garden backdrop.

What do you love about being a creative and working in creative industries in the North West?

It’s so much easier to connect with other creatives in the north and I feel like the creative community up north is so diverse. It’s amazing to see and hear about different perspectives and experiences.

Any advice for women starting out or making their mark in creative industries?

Be authentic, what do you have that makes you different from the rest? Focus on that and run with your vision.

Networking is everything, don’t be afraid to put yourself out there and expose yourself to different creatives because you could be exposing yourself to new opportunities at the same time.

(Scary but Necessary)

Black woman facing away wearing light blue head scarf over denim jacket, part of the Woke Denim Project by Tiwirayi Ndoro
Two black women wearing denim kneeling on the ground facing camera, as part of the Woke Denim Project by Tiwirayi Ndoro

From a creative perspective, what do you think the North West has to offer female creatives, that other regions might not?

I think that the North has so much to offer Women in the creative industry because the market isn’t as saturated as it is in London for example. There’s so much room for growth, especially if you start working on creating a name for yourself now!

As a graduate and photographer how do you think we can create a more diverse, equitable and inclusive world in our universities and creative industries?

I think creating more spaces for students to network with each other and with the creative industry is a great place to start.

Live briefs and offering students the chance to work with brands to create and actively learn how to create to an industry standard, is also a good way of ensuring that everyone gets a chance to get the necessary experience needed before entering the “real world”.

What are you doing as a woman working in creative industries to help #BreaktheBias?

I’m being myself. I’m being authentic to my beliefs, culture and identity and my creativity.

This is not always easy because people will always have their opinions, but someone out there needs me to be me and not a copy of someone else.

Tiwirayi Ndoro Profile Picture
Black women's fist and denim sleeve against black background, part of Tiwirayi Ndoro's Woke Denim Project

All images in this feature were created by Tiwi Ndoro for IWD22 and her Woke Denim Project.

Instagram: @tiwi_michelle / @tiwimichellestyling

Youtube: Tiwi Michelle

Tik Tok: Tiwi_michelle

International Women's Day 2022

International Women's Day (March 8) is a global day celebrating the social, economic, cultural, and political achievements of women. The day also marks a call to action for accelerating women's equality.

IWD has occurred for well over a century, with the first IWD gathering in 1911 supported by over a million people. Today, IWD belongs to all groups collectively everywhere. IWD is not country, group or organization specific.

International Women's Day Logo White

Break the Bias

Imagine a gender equal world.

A world free of bias, stereotypes, and discrimination.

A world that is diverse, equitable, and inclusive.

A world where difference is valued and celebrated.

Together we can forge women's equality.

Collectively we can all #BreakTheBias.


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