June 18, 2013
(despite the title of this post, I love these photos of me, Candice and Chelsea from a photobooth)
Raise your hand if you’ve ever thought you were totally not photogenic at some point in your life. Everyone, right?
When I first started doing casual shoots with friends, I began noticing how almost all girls claim to be un-photogenic. And admittedly, when I was in shoots I hated seeing the photos afterwards (I still sometimes do). The high-res pictures highlighted all of my perceived flaws: beady little eyes, a bumpy nose, an asymmetrical face, awkward expressions. When I saw the pictures, I didn’t look how I thought I was going to look. In the beginning, seeing these photos took me right back to my freshman year of high school and to one photo in particular:
I still remember the picture of me and my friends getting ready to go to a dance together. All of the girls look darling and sweet and so precious…and then there’s me. I had horrible acne (I was later on Accutane), braces, weird thick hair that I hadn’t learned to master, gawky limbs and itty bitty chicken legs. In my mind, I looked like a princess but when I saw that photo a few days later I burst into tears. Why couldn’t I have stick straight hair and perfect skin like my friends?
As painful as that time was, there’s one thing I love about that photo. One of my oldest and best friends Alex is in it with me, and she looks almost as awkward as I do in it (I think she’s holding a “purse” that was a freebie form Bath & Body Works…no one’s sure why). I found the picture recently and we were dying laughing about it—how funny we were, how silly we looked, how hilarious it all was.
I think (and actually hope), that at some point in our lives we all feel like the ugly duckling. It’s character building and humbling and from it can come important self-discovery, lifelong friendships and the ability to identify and sympathize with others who feel in some way left out. Thankfully, it’s been a long time since I burst into tears over a photo of myself (ha!) but sometimes those old feelings come back when I see a picture that seems to bring all of my flaws into focus. Sometimes I have a little pity party about it and then I just think: screw it.
It’s true that everyone takes a crappy photo every now and then, but it’s equally true that we’re all photogenic in our own way. Now, when a hilariously bad photo does pop up, I feel lucky to have good friends who will laugh about it with me—and the wherewithal not to burst into tears:)
How about you? Hate having your photo taken? Don’t really care? Love it? Spill it!