Headshots & Sympathy

When I moved into Canadaland two years ago as the new girl , I never could’ve dreamt how much I would need kindred spirits and welcoming hearts. I mean, I knew I would need to make friends but I could never have anticipated how much a generous smile and a few hours of laughter would minister to my soul. `
After a couple hours laughing with Breanne at Milsean Coffee Shoppe, we made plans for a headshot shop photo day.    Just a couple photographers and their cameras getting together to, well, laugh….and photograph.
In the course of choosing outfits, preparing to photograph and be photographed, and trying to remember that the camera cannot physically attack, I have a fresh appreciation for the trauma of picture day in the lives of my clients.
1.  Choosing the right outfit is hard.  Choosing the right outfit for a whole family is even harder.
I emptied the entire contents of my closet onto my bedroom floor, trying on outfits, discarding options, choosing which pieces to actually wear. I wanted it to fit properly, look polished but fun, make me feel pretty.  I wanted to feel like myself, look like a supermodel, and be able to photograph without ruining the look.  A pretty tall order, yes?  I’ve been working on my What to Wear  Pinterest board but putting principles into practice is far harder than it appears.  Thankfully, having the board helped me know where to start my search.  (Maybe I threw a few less clothes onto the ground because of it?)
2.  Posing is hard.
Breanne and I each had two turns in front of the camera. The first time?  So stiff, disjointed, unnatural.  For both of us!  After a few more minutes getting comfortable and laughing it up, the second batch of photos was so incredibly much better.  As proof of why I always block off over an hour for a portrait session, even two pros had trouble loosening up for the camera; the second half is always more natural and relaxed than the first half.
3.  The camera is scary. 
I am constantly around cameras.  Little ones, big ones, expensive ones, cheap ones. And yet – there I was:  nervous when Breanne covered her face with a black scary box and expected me to smile at it. My clients will notice I often don’t pull out my camera until after several minutes of chatting, hearing the love story, playing peek-a-boo with the kiddos,  climbing the swingset;  basically, making friends.   Then, it’s just a scary camera…not a scary photographer. 😛

I did eventually make it past my fear of the camera, AND picked out outfits I can be proud of. But, most of all, I had fun laughing with my new friend and learning sympathy for my clients; didn’t Breanne do a fabulous job as both model and photographer? Today, I’m so thankful for Breanne, for cute outfits, for fabulous headshots, and for the human ability to sympathize.

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