I am just in love with this image I took of Amy Rae the day after MTH2010 in WaterColor. It just speaks determination, insight, ambition and her caring nature. I really feel like this image represents Amy right then at that moment. This is why portraits are so powerful. They represent each person in that present moment of time. amyrae3bw

Sarah Rhoads recently started a personal project on self portraits. It’s amazing to view the variety of photos in this post , wowzers it really spoke to me. Self Portraits right now are a tool helping me live in the present moment, to appreciate and embrace who I am today. Thanking God for creating me just the way that I am. This is something that I struggle with daily, accepting me. It’s truly hard for me to admit. I feel like at my age and my place in life (married, owning a business, house) I should have this all together.  I think a lot of us also get stuck in the fears of  “I’m not good enough” or “Someday I will…..” in many aspects of life. I hear it all the time about photos “I will get photos done:  when I lose 20 pounds, when my kids get a little older, after I get my hair done, when I look skinny.” I have made these excuses before…many times.

On the flipside, I love taking peoples portraits. I make it a point to take individual portraits at every type of session. I seriously enjoy capturing people and their personality with my camera. I am literally blown away when I am looking through my lens at an individual. People are so beautiful…so inspiring…so perfect in their own way. I bet some of my clients think I am a little goofy because while I take their photos, sometimes I start sounding like Austin Powers “Your beautiful, ooo I love that, that’s it,  Perfect….” “your an animal” Well ok, not that last one that might be a little creepy…HA. But usually I just can’t help myself. I do get super exciting when I am shooting, and many times these are some of my favorite images.

Yet, many times I know that my clients don’t feel that way about themselves. People think they weigh too much, aren’t cute, have big arms, have a funny smile or just they think they aren’t photogenic.  To be truthful, I am uber critical about myself also, usually picking out this and that. Parts that I need to fix. WRONG. We are all dead wrong. We are all beautiful because no one else can be like us, God made us all unique.

One of my goals is to inspire others to think differently about themselves, to appreciate themselves, love themselves. All the while I will be joining them on the journey. So, it is time I take my own advice. I am going to personally change the way I look at myself. One of the tools I am going to use is to participate in Sarah’s monthly self-portrait challenge.  I want to remember who I am in that present moment. Not only to get over my fear and my struggle of accepting myself; but to see myself through the journey, ladies and gentlemen time flys, and I want to document it better. I want to remember what I was going through at that moment… the good, the bad and the ugly. Me. Perfectly Imperfect. I am not going to worry about what tool I use to capture these images. Whether I use my iPhone, my Mark II or my new goodies that are arriving this week. I challenge you to participate as well.

Sorry if this post was a little here and there….I am literally a little nervewrecked about sharing my self-image issues publicly. But what do I have to lose, it is a great accountability opportunity, and I feel like there could be many out there that deal with the same things. I am ready to attack these struggles, excuses and fears head on. This is what my Making Things Happen Intensive experience with Lara Casey has taught me. So when Mr. Mirror or my camera lens starts to make me feel negative, nit picky or down. I am going to stand on these truths.

  • I am brillantly and beautifully made. Psalms 139
  • This is who you are today, who God has made you. Embrace it, Gina.
  • I am so blessed. Look at all the things that I have been giving. Be Grateful.
  • Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. Rom 12:12 (Thanks Chris & Emily for passing this along via twitter)

So here goes nothing, even though (here come the insecurities) my nose looks huge, and I am white as a ghost. This is me and my self-portraits.

gportait2webgportait3w

  1. Amy Campbell

    I love you Gina!! Everything about you…strong, brave, passionate, kind, faithful, and inspiring! I feel blessed to have you in my life! Keep going girl, you are doing great things!

  2. Laura Ivanova

    Gina, you are so beautiful inside and out. Beautiful post, so eloquently spoken.

  3. Michelle @ HERPRESIGN

    Beautiful and honest. Thank you.

  4. Kirsten

    as you’re taking my picture at the family session i’m thinking “do my bangs look right, my face probably looks fat, i hope i don’t look like an idiot, i wish i was thinner…” and i get up from the couch and you’re looking at the pic saying ‘you’re so cute it’s sick’

    you, gina, are so cute it’s sick. 😉 believe it and embrace it.

  5. Becky

    Gina, I’ve already mentioned this today (I guess yesterday now), but you are SO incredibly inspirational. Thank you for speaking from your heart and sharing this. — And by the way, those blue eyes are killer. 🙂

  6. Magan

    Great post. Love your self-portraits, but love the self-reminders when you start to get down on yourself. Feeling inspired to make my own list. As a fellow photog, I think it’s important to make sure we realize we feel the same way when we’re behind the camera… and figure out how to make the experience better. Awesome job. 🙂

  7. Ryan

    Thanks for your honesty in this post. You’ve inspired me to do the same 🙂

  8. melissa oholendt

    It’s so easy to get caught up in the insecurites of life in general; let alone put yourself in front of a camera and the proverbial stinkyness hits the fan. For the record, you are a STUNNER. Not just pretty – you are stunning on the outside. Add in your inner beauty and holy crap, you shine. I love you, so glad you are in my life.

  9. sarah

    wow, i was going to say a bunch of things but everyone else already covered them 🙂 but still……you are gorgeous and an amazingly inspiring person and i am very blessed to have you in my life.

  10. Leah

    I absolutely love the strength you show in this post, peppered with vulnerability. You’ve changed so much in just the short time that I’ve known you Gina. I love it! And these self portraits are my most favorite.

  11. Jeff Holt

    Love it Gina.. Great post! We talk about authenticity with our businesses but we have such a hard time being authentic to ourselves.

  12. kelsy mccartney

    it’s funny how much someone else’s words can speak to you… i’m pretty sure i read this blog post of yours on exactly the right day at exactly the right moment – thank you for your inspirational + honest words!!! i think everyone would benefit from reading this 🙂

  13. Alexia Strawn

    Amazing post….thanks for the inspiration and the truth!

  14. crystal

    Way to open your heart to everyone! Great post Gina. You are a blogging queen.

  15. Amy Jackson

    This post is inspiring. Thank you for sharing your heart. 🙂

BACK TO GRID