“Only 11% of Creative Directors are women.”
“A mere 7% of women are calling the shots on commercial shoots.”
It is these exact kinds of shocking statistics Nicky Woodhouse, Founder of Sister Motion, tells us that drove her to take action against gender bias in the Creative Industries.
Nicky is part of Creative UK’s Elevate Membership and, in this article, we find out more about the Sister Motion mission – its establishing past and its aspirational future. We discover how the community of talent came to be and delve deeper into the work Sister Motion is doing to challenge gender imbalance in the production supply chain and to champion more diversity in the sector.
The Sister Motion story so far
Sister Motion is a full-service production agency, passionate about gender equality and bringing different perspectives to creative production. The company works with talent from under-represented groups to affect change in attitudes and behaviours towards women and other minorities within the Creative Industries.
“After over 20 years in production and a decade working as a Commercial Director, I have become endlessly frustrated by the lack of women and minorities on set with me. So I decided to do something about it.”
It all began at the start of the Covid pandemic back in 2020. Like so many creatives around the world, Nicky’s life was turned upside down overnight as work came to a standstill and her career as a Commercial Director seemed to grind to a halt. From the shadows emerged some light though as communities started forming, united in a bid to offer support for each other.
Inspiring stories of community, collaboration and kindness started flooding the headlines. Nicky talks about how even in those “spiritually dark days”, there was sunshine and enduring relationships. It was all of this unshaken positivity that inspired her to pivot her career and her skills in a way that would “harness the power and creativity of people coming together”.
“We need senior men at brands and in creative agencies to actively champion women. Without colleagues and clients being convinced to give us a shot, these systemic barriers will continue, and women will be kept in place as the organisers, coordinators and facilitators of male creativity.”
Sister Motion was launched to provide a production agency that would forge a community and confront a major challenge within the Creative Industries: the lack of women in senior creative roles. Frustrated by staunch tradition and archaic convention, Nicky wanted to provide the sector with something different, something refreshing – something that would remove women from being the facilitators of male creativity.
The issue is palpable within TV and advertising too. “Where are all the bold, strong female protagonists who my fearless five-year-old daughter can look up to and dream of being one day?”, Nicky asks. It’s these one-dimensional portrayals of women that need to drastically evolve and this can only be done if women have a strong hand in conceptualising and executing the creativity in the first place.
The future that Sister Motion is working to cultivate is one where collaboration and unity sit at the very centre – where women and minorities have a seat at the table, and where brands and businesses start breaking the cultural mould.
“When people come together to collaborate and celebrate each other, magical and unexpected things happen. We are excited that we can make life easier for agencies and brands to tap into our zeitgeist and make a positive cultural shift by challenging stereotypes and building a more progressive society. Sister Motion is ready and waiting. I know that together we can make a difference.”
Our new Elevate membership is currently open to individuals and businesses on an invitation-only basis. If you are interested in joining and want to start receiving the above benefits please complete this expression of interest form