My favourite things are my home, my friends and my art. It’s probably in that order but home and friends are all combined. I’m in this wonderful share house with this amazing group of supportive friends who’ve also become family.

At this moment, I’m probably the happiest I’ve been in a very long time. So, you’ve got me on a perfect day.

I moved here about ten years ago to study art. I think I did the whole middle-aged thing and have a little kind of break from what I was doing. I split up with an ex-boyfriend. Thought ‘why am I working in an office and depressed when I could be doing art?’ I went back to study art at TAFE and did that for a couple of years. I loved it and thought ‘what else could I do?’ and came to Canberra to study art. I was adamant I was leaving the minute I got my degree but I’ve been here for another 5 years. The people keep me here.

My perfect day in Canberra would be at home with my flatmates with take away coffee.

The best thing about being a woman in Canberra is definitely the other women here. I’m surrounded by the most amazingly talented group of women who inspire me all the time and I just sometimes can’t get over it. The people that live in Canberra and the women that I know are just all so active and everyday it’s an absolute joy. I get to talk to these women at work and at home. They push me forward and make me better as a woman as well.

The first word that came to my mind about being a woman was difficult. It’s hard for me as well because I know that I’m quite privileged. I’m in this position where I’m surrounded by people who love and support me, who understand sometimes there are struggles that you go through being a woman. I live with three other women, so I’m very lucky in that respect. It can also be really difficult to be a woman sometimes and I was reminded of this just recently. I was catching a taxi when the taxi driver asked me out and put me in a position where I said ‘yes’ and all I wanted to say was ‘no.’ I said ‘yes’ because he knew where I lived. So there is still a lot of work to be done.

I think the hardest thing about being a woman in Canberra is that I find a little bit of a very privileged European middle class male entitlement. I find it hard sometimes. There just seems to be a little bit of entitlement that happens in Canberra, which impacts on how people are treated.

I think it’s easy for me to maintain my health and wellbeing in Canberra. I’ve got a good job, so I have money. I haven’t been in a position where I’ve really had to worry about it and when I was a student I had access to health services. Most of the younger women I know make use of the ACT health services. I’m actually aware of the services as well, which I think is a good thing. And people like you are doing a good job and actually spreading that information around.


Image created by Nicole Zimmermann as part of Canberra’s You Are Here festival