This week we are hearing from Emily Davison, blogger and YouTuber of Fashioneyesta.
When Emily was born she was diagnosed with a rare congenital condition called Septo Optic Dysplasia which affects her endocrine system and vision. She is registered as Severely Sight Impaired with no sight in her right eye and limited vision in her left.
She started her blog in July 2012 where she aimed to challenge peoples perceptions of sight loss through her love of fashion, beauty and style.
What made you want to start writing your blog and connect with people online?
I wanted to write blogs to change attitudes towards disability in a positive and creative way. I’ve always loved to write and make content and being able to use my passion and channel it in a constructive way gives me a real sense of empowerment.
What are your favourite topics to speak about on Fashioneyesta and why?
Disability awareness, because I have a lot to say on this topic and every time I go out and come across people’s misconceptions towards my disability I have a new blog to write! I’m never stuck for ideas on this topic.
Travel, I love to write about accessible travel in particular because I love seeing new places and raising awareness of places that are accessible for disabled people. Because traveling with a disability can be incredibly difficult if you don’t have background knowledge.
Style and beauty, these were the first topics I wrote about and they serve as the foundations of my blog. I love to talk about them because people honestly assume that people with sight loss cannot or do not have an interest in beauty and their aesthetic appearance. Which is of course very far from reality!
What do you like doing in your free time?
I love to travel and explore new places, even if it’s just a day trip to London or to a National Trust location. I have a love to go off with my guide dog and to see where the day will take me.
What information do you look for before visiting a new place?
I look for accessibility information, how easy is an area to negotiate? Is there good public transport? Is it accessible for a pedestrian? What do they offer to their disabled visitors? I also read reviews on travel websites to see what other people thought of the venue to get a feel if it’s somewhere I want to visit or not.
What is your favourite invention?
Seeing AI, it’s a fantastic app for people with sight loss because it has an array of features to make daily tasks like reading, shopping and traveling accessible for people with limited vision with audio feedback. It can scan text, detect money, recognise faces and many more features besides.
What other topics would you like to see spoken about more online?
I would love to see more content made on accessible travel and travelling when you have a disability. But I also think we need to see more content made on invisible disabilities, as this is still a very “invisible” topic and people with invisible illnesses and disabilities face an incredible amount of discrimination for not “looking disabled” which simply needs to change.
Did you start your YouTube channel at the same time as you started your blog? If not, what made you get into creating videos on YouTube?
I started my blog before my YouTube Channel, I got into YouTube a little later as I started getting to grips with my camera. I wanted to explore different facets of creativity and so I began my YouTube on a causal basis before I really started to pursue it in 2013 onwards.
Do you like this virtual experience for Kobee? How could it be improved?
It’s definitely useful as it features accessibility information and you can clearly see what the venue looks like. I think it’s important to ensure it’s accessible for people with sight loss, adding features like an option for audio feedback and to ensure it’s voiceover compatible is definitely important.
Thank you Emily for answering our questions and we look forward to seeing where Fashioneyesta goes in the future.