Sarah’s Chronicles #27 - Face of Dove, 2006
Updated: Jun 16
Documentary style online advert filmed in my then home in Leeds when I was starting out. Fun and also surreal sharing my bedroom and bathroom with a film crew. (Although never credited for my work, I assisted with the direction and writing).
The advert won a 2007 Silver Award in the British Television Advertising Awards for Toiletries. (Personally, I think it must have been my Leeds ‘do I look fit’ (that means hot to the rest of the world) line that did it. I was really disappointed however, that I wasn’t named for my contribution, simply labelled ‘blind girl.’ I do have a question: what would the world think if this was labelled ‘black girl?’ I don't say this lightly as I am from a multi-cultured background. My best friend growing up was mixed race, as is one of my closest friends now. Friends through my life always of every shape, size, background, colour, sexuality, as well as my dates and relationships. I used to be in a relationship many years ago with an English born and bred half Bangladeshi, Cambridge educated Arts Reporter (the first ever ‘brown’ as he used to say to obtain this position on his newspaper), presenter of his own radio show, playwright and screenwriter whom has experienced extreme racism within his own country despite his hard work and contribution. It has unfortunately come to light over the years that people with ’diffrabilities’ or whom are ‘differentlyable’ (which is how I identify myself) go through similar challenging experiences.
Just being identified with the label 'blind person' everywhere within society (on the street when I'm out and people whisper under their voices 'she's blind' thinking I can't hear them, being questioned constantly about it by complete strangers, reading acting scripts with parts for 'blind people' which are not empowering or a true inclusive representation of 'real people' with physical eye 'diffrabilities' and much more...) has made me feel like an object and dehumanised as if I am a separate entity to everybody else and the 'human' race. So much so ,that I've suffered with bouts of depression because I felt so alienated at times and separate from the world. Blindness and partial sightedness is an extremely complex condition and every single person has a unique situation and different eye conditions with varying levels of sight and different ways of functioning independently (I've worked with and spoken with hundreds of different partially sighted and 'blind people' over the years in different work situations and who rarely have the same eye conditions and level of sight. Some are cane users and some don't wish to use a cane.) So the term 'blind person' or 'blind girl' does not represent everybody in a true light. Although a cane user myself, (non-white) I have a lot of use for vision which enables me to function more or less as a full-sighted person just in a different way (I can still drive by the way and have actually reversed parked a 4x4, something I couldn't even do when I had full sight)!
My name is actually ‘Sarah.’