Ladies First looks at the way society stereotypically views and places differing expectations on women and men. The title of the series plays on a traditional phrase most often used to indicate the custom of women being served first, often by women and allowed to enter or exit first, a privilege granted by men.
None of the views expressed in Ladies First are shared by photographer, Ian Hoskin. They have all been identified from conversations, social interaction, the workplace, politics, advertising, magazines, literature, television and radio. When viewed in conjunction with the images, the texts, wherever possible, are the same to highlight the differing way we perceive and treat women and men. Informing these images is the important and topical issue of what are the defining factors that make up masculinity and femininity.
Some assumptions about gender are based on societal norms and peer groups, while others on an outdated view of evolutionary biology.
Hoskin began working on Ladies First in the 1980s. Some thirty-five years later he realised that sadly few of these cliches had changed. He hopes to shed light on our continued gender stereotyping and push for change and true equality.