“Photography is a way of feeling, of touching, of loving. What you have caught on film is captured forever… It remembers little things, long after you have forgotten everything.” — Aaron Siskind
The holidays are well past, and without a doubt you took many pictures, right? But how many times were you the one taking pictures? And how many times were you actually in the pictures? You can take a guess at what side of the camera I’m usually on. But in my 12 years as a professional photographer, I’ve learned that it’s important to be in the pictures, too.
Photography is an art form. And art is in the eye of the beholder. What inspires some may not be the same type of picture that touches someone else. And we can all be picky about what we look like in pictures. It certainly doesn’t help that today’s ‘selfie society,’ many people are adept at using filters and lighting that helps them look just right.
When it comes to being in the picture, I recommend asking yourself what kind of memory are you aiming to capture. If it’s a ‘slice of life’ moment, perhaps a candid shot works best for you. If you’re not the type of person who likes posed pictures, that doesn’t mean you still can’t be in the shot. Or maybe you know your good side, that perfect angle and how to position your hip just so, so that you feel you look your best. If you found the magic way to feel good in front of the camera, go for it, posed pictures are your thing. If you’re an active person who is always out in nature, get in photos while out in your element. The point is to capture your essence and a moment in time.
I recently read an article about a photographer who really disliked being in front of the camera. But, her boyfriend wanted pictures of her. After much persuasion, she agreed to let him take her picture, but under her terms. And now, their picture norm is adorable. She’ll do anything to avoid her entire face in the photos, yet, what he captures, truly shows her quirky and fun essence. It is a win-win for them both. You can read their cute story here.
We all have times when we don’t feel we look our best, and perhaps those are the times it’s easier to be behind the camera. But, time is precious, stop worrying that things aren’t perfect – years from now, when you look back on pictures, you might not remember that on that specific day, you wished you were a few pounds lighter, or that weren’t having a good hair day. The truth is, in a few years from now, you’ll be smiling at those pictures, wishing you could turn back the clock!
So, enjoy each day and please, get in the picture!