Photo Project Captures The Reality Of Breastfeeding

Photo Project Captures The Reality Of Breastfeeding

The Realities Of Breastfeeding

Artist, photographer and mother, Suzie Blake, has created a photo project she hopes will normalise breastfeeding.

The photo series features a collection of beautifully shot black and white photographs that capture the realities of life as a breastfeeding mother.

Writing on her website, Blake said: “I feel there is a distinct lack of authenticity in images of women breastfeeding. In the media most photos are highly stylised or unrealistic; many are sheer fantasy.

Whether it be the angelic mother in her clinical white perfection or some model on the front of a fashion magazine. I’m tired of images that fail to show the realities of breastfeeding.”

Blake wanted to create a project that captured everyday breastfeeding. Not the glamorous fashion shoots, but the tired mamas slumped on the sofa at home. The women are photographed in their homes, with toys scattered across the floor as older children play gleefully in the background.

Some women are photographed breastfeeding in public, a reality of life for most breastfeeding mothers. From serene shots taken at a local park to a quick feed at the hair salon, the project perfectly captures these real life breastfeeding scenarios.

Portraying Breastfeeding In All Its Beautiful Messiness

The Melbourne based photographer wrote on her website: “This project is about portraying breastfeeding in all its beautiful messiness. This is about tired eyes and no make-up. This is about milk leaks and ratty hair. This is about giving in to all the demands of your 2-year-old while you try to feed your newborn. This is about dishes piled up in the kitchen and dirty laundry building in the corner. This is about puke on your shoulder and toys on the floor. This is about let down milk sprays in cafes and engorged breasts at the park.”

The project started with a self-portrait Blake took of herself breastfeeding. She wanted to take a photograph that summed up her breastfeeding experience, and soon realised that this was the perfect concept for a photo series.

After posting a request on Facebook to see if other mamas might be interested in being photographed, Blake soon realised there was a huge demand for this type of project. The photographer and breastfeeding mama is now hoping to take the project global and photograph breastfeeding women all over the world.

To find out more about the ‘What Does Breastfeeding Look Like?’ photo project, check out the Facebook page here. Blake hopes the project will help to normalise breastfeeding, empower new mothers and improve breastfeeding rates. See her YouTube video below.

Recommended Reading: Check out the BellyBelly article about another postpartum photo series I Gave Birth Yesterday – Was It Like This For You?




Fiona Peacock is a writer, researcher and lover of all things to do with pregnancy, birth and motherhood (apart from the lack of sleep). She is a home birth advocate, passionate about gentle parenting and is also really tired.

One comment

  1. This a thousand time this! I am fully supportive of anything helping to #normalizebreastfeeding I think it needs to be displayed heavily in the media, commercials, TV, movies as the natural, normal, hum drum (sometimes) wonderful thing that it is. Like you said the images we do see are beautiful but help in perpetuating the image of breast is best, not breast is normal. Breast feeding is for the stars, for glamorous, for the hippies, for the stuck up who think they are better than formula feeders… This must change . Breast is natural, breast is normal, breast is easiest and free and wonderful (once you have proper guidance and it is well developed (obviously getting started can be difficult and there are medical issues that can be set backs but most of the time proper lactation education can go huge leaps in making it possible)!! If I can at all be of any assistance in your endeavors please please let me know!! I am passionate about this and seeking my lactation education and degrees so I can help more women! Currently 21 months into breastfeeding baby #2!

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