Last weekend I had the pleasure of photographing 17 beautiful women at my first ever Wine Tasting & Portrait Party. It was an amazing evening filled with lots of laughs, good wine, friendship and photos.
I will be sharing more about the event in an upcoming blog post…. but today I wanted to share my own experience of being on the other side of the camera.
Midway through the evening, there was a little lull and I had a moment to relax and grab a glass of water and chat with everyone. During this time, my friend Michele suggested that I get in front of the camera and take a few quick shots with my long time friend Victoria.
As Victoria and I sat on the step to mug for the camera, thoughts began to swirl in my head…..Is that a good angle? Should I tell her to step back so as not to capture all my wrinkles in detail? Is my hair a mess? How is my lipstick?
Michele snapped the photo and showed me the image on the back of the screen and my first thought was, “Good grief, my rear looks big and oh my goodness those roots” and I continued to criticize how I looked.
Of course, none of these thoughts ran through my head as I looked at my beautiful friend Victoria. I only saw an image of a gorgeous, incredibly strong woman with a warm smile sitting next to me….the “flaws” that stood out were mine alone. We are our own worst critic.
When I came home and loaded the photos onto my computer, I looked at this photo again with a fresh set of eyes….and realized that I actually LOVE this photo and how WE BOTH looked.
Sure I could have angled my leg a little better to not show the widest part of my hip and a day at the salon would have covered my roots….but when I really stopped to reflect on this image, I realized there was so much more to see. For instance…..
Two women who have been friends for over 20 years.
Two women who have been at each other’s side through good times and bad.
Two women who have traveled together to destinations near and far and share so many fond memories.
Two women who are always one another’s biggest cheerleader.
Two women who love to surround themselves with good friends.
Two women who have a passion for meeting new people and connecting with others.
Most importantly, I see two women who have a deep bond and connection and I feel it is so evident in our relaxed pose….one we just sank right into. No one had to direct us to lean into the other or to put an arm lovingly on the other’s back or knee. It just happened, naturally.
So I guess the point of this post is to encourage you all to look beyond those initial imperfections that may jump out at you (we all are so critical of ourselves) so that you may recognize and celebrate your whole, beautiful story.