It has been five years since I graduated high school, and It has taken me this long to gather the courage to get in front of my own camera and get a nice photo of myself. I always hear clients say how hard it was to schedule their session, or how they wanted to cancel last minute because they were too afraid of how they would look. I normally respond with something about how nice they will look and they wont feel the same way after they see the photos, but now I get. it.
As a photographer I happily hide behind my camera and never am in family photos. I often look back at photos of myself before I gained weight and there are so many photos and memories to look at, now there are just a few photos of myself from the past few years, fewer memories documented because I didn't like looking at my picture.
Growing up my mother had the same issue, she would make jokes about not letting anyone take her picture from the neck up and while I rolled my eyes, the older I got the more I found myself saying the same thing. I started hearing people say to me "wow your headshot doesn't look anything like you" or "how long ago was this photo taken" I knew the time was running out and I couldn't hide behind 16 year old me any more.
Finally, today, I told myself it was now or never. I am out of excuses. I did my own hair and makeup, set up my lights and put on some feel good music. I took hundreds of photos, running to look at the back of the camera and see how I was looking. Once I found the photo I liked the most, I posted it to my social media and sat back and waited for a response.
I got a ton of positive feedback on the image, and then a light went off. I saw myself in the position of my clients, the fear, the trepidation and self doubt, then I noticed the pride, the moment where I said okay, I don't look how I used to but thats okay. I felt that switch in how I saw myself and how I thought others saw me. I realized I didn't need the approval of others to accept myself, and no amount of compliments can make me feel great about myself.
I get it now, I see your fears, your doubts, I have walked in your shoes. If you feel, for any reason, that you aren't ready to get your photo taken, I would like to challenge you to book a session RIGHT NOW. Face those fears and insecurities head on and see how BEAUTIFUL you are RIGHT NOW, with that extra couple of pounds, bad hair cut, or any other reason you could possibly think of that would make you feel that you aren't good enough as you are. You are beautiful and I can show you.
Change the way you see yourself. Call me 202-643-3714.