I was on a beach in Puerto Rico and I was taking a walk towards the sunset on my first yoga retreat and first real travel by myself. What a beautiful sunset it was. My teacher who is a photographer asked if he could photograph me and started taking photos. I had always been the one taking photos as is obviously true with most photographers and sometimes the biggest challenge, especially for photographers is to get photos of yourself taken.
He started directing me the way he wanted me to be in the frame, and the process actually felt as if I was in a yoga class. I was directed to open my heart, bring my knee over my ankle, before I knew it I actually had forgotten that I was being photographed. I was always so impressed the way that he was able to just draw out authenticity in what can normally be an awkward and uncomfortable experience.
I always aim to as much as possible try and have my subjects forget they are being photographed and to feel like they are just hanging out with me. This goal has always been generated from that experience. It is really hard for me to have photos of myself taken, not only do natural insecurities seem to surface but my overly critical photographer's eye is also at play.
Experiences photographing others can actually be quite intense, you can learn a lot about someone by how they behave in a photo shoot. Relationship dynamics, insecurities, perceptions of others, confidence, etc.
This past weekend I had the lovely experience of giving the gift of a photo shoot for the engagement of my 2 dear friends. I had kind of debriefed them and given them my spiel of why I like to photograph this way and they seemed to agree. Mostly my friend Tim just wanted the shoot to be done, he many times suggested that we could do it without him, he even threw his shoe at one point, anyone who knows him knows what that can mean, haha
Well what was so beautiful about the shoot was their attitude, which I actually thought to be reflective of their relationship. It was raining for just about half the shoot, they remained positive the entire time, never panicked, never freaked out. There was just acceptance of what was. The shoot went smoothly, they went along with whatever crazy things I asked them to do and the photos turned out great.
Auspiciously enough anytime we would get out of the car to try a different spot the rain would hold back just long enough for us to get back into the car to move to the next location, it was actually quite incredible.
I am so happy for my two friends and I wish them both a beautiful future together. Keep smiling through the rain, it is what has and will get you guys through whatever obstacles that cross your path.