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Barbies are people too! Oh wait…No they’re not.

As a photographer I hear all the time “I look fat”, “Ew!”, “Can you make me look 10lbs lighter?”, or “I take horrible photos.” Ladies… your self image needs a makeover. BAD. Overly edited magazines and unrealistic models have skewed our image of “natural” beauty.

I’ve found that the best photo shoots I’ve done are in result of happy, healthy people. Whether that’s happily in love, healthy in their relationships, or just in general in their lives. YOUR HAPPY IS BEAUTIFUL! I think the trick in life is finding what that is for you. And you want to know a little secret? It’s the prettiest people in life that are the saddest. How do I know this? They are the people who are only worried about how they look and not how they feel.

I absolutely LOVE this little clip from the movie “About Time” with Rachel McAdams & Domhnall Gleeson where Rachel’s roll of Mary is meeting her boyfriend’s parents for the first time. In the scene the mother says “It’s very bad for girls to be too pretty. It stops them from developing a sense of humor or a personality.” Here is a link to this little clip:

I would have to agree with the mother in this movie! Don’t get me wrong… I’m not saying that all pretty people don’t have a good sense of humor or a good personality to match their good looks. It’s just a little more rare to find.

There is a reason why I tell people to laugh during their photo shoots. To truly make them look HAPPY. Not just an image of happy person. There is a connection and authenticity in a laugh. I hear a lot “I have a crooked smile” or “I squint when I smile.” Well I HOPE SO! You are human! Your eyes are supposed to squint a little and your smile isn’t going to be perfectly straight. This is YOU! A REAL PERSON. We are blasted with these images from the media of people’s eyes being perfectly shaped and smiles perfectly symmetrical and THIS is unreal!

Below is an image of myself from my Bachelorette Party. The left image is totally unedited. As you will see the right image is fully edited and the difference is scary. Is this real beauty? Is this what we expect to see in a professionally edited photo? When did it become the photographer’s job to change your cheek bones and contour your nose to look a little thinner? “Beauty belongs in the eye of the beholder.” Well what if that eye is wrong and misguided?

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