Five Denver Women Deserving of Your Follow
Sydney Hodgson | @SydneyLHodgson
Ah, Instagram. The little photo-sharing app that has us all thinking we could be professional photographers. It introduces us to strangers with seemingly picture-perfect lives and to the creative works of rising stars. And if Instagram is any indication, the streets of Denver are filled with both. Be warned, these local influencers’ pictures and stories may leave us drooling in our cubicles and office jobs, but they will also bring inspiration to our everyday, and show us our surroundings in a new, lo-fi filtered light.
Scroll through her Instagram feed and Mallory Sauer seems to be another crazy gorgeous, well-dressed girl in the Mile High City - until you come across an image of her with her ileostomy bag. Mallory was diagnosed with stage four melanoma in 2015 and continues her ongoing fight with Crohn’s disease. A significant and personal side of her content is dedicated to her health stories. “I thought that would be a good thing to share with my followers because it's real, and also something that a lot of people deal with but are afraid to talk about,” Mallory told The Broadview Denver. “I wanted to be a voice and help others cope with illnesses they may be battling, if at all possible. Being so open and sharing so much about the things I'm going through is something I don't regret at all.” Mallory is a strong advocate for being real, and for not judging a person by his or her Instagram feed: “Keep in mind that social media isn't always real life.” Follow along on her journey on Instagram and sweetandsauer.com.
You may not know her name, but chances are you have seen Beauty Vlogger Nura Afia. The Denver native was recently picked up by CoverGirl and modeled in the So Lashy! blastPRO mascara commercial alongside a stellar lineup including Katy Perry, Sofia Vergara and Chloe x Halle, just to name a few. The video is part of the brand’s #LashEquality campaign and larger movement to bring inclusivity to the beauty industry. This is the first time the major beauty brand has featured a woman in a hijab in its advertisements, and Afia is absolutely stunning. Get it, girl!
Kelly Pfeiffer, an author, recipe creator and food photographer, includes superfoods in every meal she makes. Her goal is to make healthy eating easy in the hustle and bustle of everyday life. Her images stand out because of the vibrant natural colors and recognizable ingredients. “At one point I felt like I wasn't a great food photographer because I didn't have a lot of the dark, moodier shots,” Kelly told The Broadview Denver. “But I realized I'm ok with that. I love bright, colorful, nourishing food --- and my IG feed reflects that.” It certainly does. Follow Nosh and Nourish for food porn that can actually nourish you.
Heidi paints landscapes on the inside of recycled tins. She matches these paintings to the real-life scenes of favorite Colorado places like Cheeseman Park, Chautauqua, and Garden of the Gods. It is a distinct style showcasing her passion for Colorado through an unexpected, sustainable medium. You may never look at a tin of mints the same way again.
Marisa is an outdoor and adventure photographer who captures nature and the people who enjoy it in a vivid expression of light and life. The majority of her images feature women athletes and adventurers. “I'm fortunate to know a lot of women who can hold their own in the wild and the high alpine,” Marisa explains. “Simply put: I photograph the people I get out with. But beyond that, when I see a woman doing what she loves in a place that speaks to her, I see myself and our shared experience. I see strength and possibility, a connection to the earth and to each other - like a mountain sisterhood. I think, when it comes down to it, the shared passion and excitement we experience as women in the outdoors shows in the resulting images I create.” If you have ever pushed yourself up a mountain, or just dream of one day doing so, check out her feed and the incredible sisterhood she describes. Inspiration guaranteed.