Break the Bias this IWD, with Megan Morton
Posted in: Lifestyle

Break the Bias this IWD, with Megan Morton

For International Women’s Day 2022, we’re talking to assertive, ambitious, creative women — leaders in our industry — about their creative paths and careers, what being a woman means to them, and how to move forward and break the bias.

From Vogue Living to Elle Decoration UK to Vanity Fair, you’ve definitely seen Megan Morton’s work. Or perhaps you’ve attended one of her workshops at The School, or picked up one of her books. 

It’s safe to say that Megan Morton is a renowned interior stylist. In fact, she spends her days “working on various creative ventures” — whether that be events, atmospheres, stills or moving pictures. Something she loves about creativity is the fact she’s always viewed it as perishable. Which is why, regardless of whether or not she’s been “officially booked” for a creative day, she continues to work on it, every day.

As glamorous as styling can seem, and as beautiful as the end result looks, Megan tells us that it’s a “very tough game”, one that’s “relentlessly physical as well as mentally demanding.”

To have a long and prosperous career in styling, there’s “a level of match-fit you need to be” — which is why she has respect for all her contemporaries, male and female. In fact, she “adores” all working stylists; pointing out the fact that most of them are doing their jobs with mastery “all the while raising families.”

This is an experience she shares with other stylists, being the mother of two daughters and a son. She feels lucky to be a woman, but luckier to share this journey of womanhood with her children. 

And this journey of womanhood is an area where she’s been taught by example, coming from a “long line of very stoic, wonderful, intelligent women.” Women who always “set the example of how to show up in the world” — something she wants to do in her own family, as a mother. 

“The small things are sometimes the most impressionable and formative, and always it’s the things you think they didn’t see!”

This network of “A+” women is something that extends into her career; working with them has made the “north star” very obvious, and provides Megan with a “reliable mud map” when it comes to times she needed guidance. Preferring to go one-on-one when it comes to advice and counsel, “ex-colleagues, work friends, bosses and ex-employees” all make up this vital network for her.

In fact, she was “fortunate” to be trained by the late Helen Tribe, who taught her how to navigate the reality of facing bias throughout a career. Recommending any kind of “extracurricular training or work you can find to engage with” as bias and stereotyping is an important issue “in all industries” Megan says she turns to Helen’s advice often.

“I had come from a corporate background, so I was awake to the issues in the boardroom” — but she found they were the same in the photo studio. With “how imbalance the world is right now” — referring to current world events — Megan states that “Women need to be in all positions of power. Yesterday. Not tomorrow.”

When it comes to this year's International Women’s Day theme of Break the Bias, she points out the fact she’s had to “work harder and longer than most men”, who don’t come home to family duties.

“This is entirely my choice,” Megan tells us. When not working, she’s been very good at resting because of this balancing act. “When I am booked, I ensure I book restore/rest time in afterwards, to put some harmony and balance back in my work life — which inevitably seeps into my private life.”

“When I commit to a job, I never not give it my all.”

And when asked what advice she’d give her younger self when it comes to how to break the bias?

“Call it when you see it. Anything that is not on. If you sniff it as being off, good chance it might be. Intention is often felt as an invisible nuance — but it can be just as dangerous as action.”

2 years ago