Empowering Women to see Their Own Beauty

Morning Reading Headshot

My friend Katie is a phenomenal photographer. I know she thinks she’s just getting established and has a lot to learn – we all do. Part of our creative process is learning our craft, expanding our skillset, and pushing ourselves to be better. We never really stop doing any of those things. I wish she could see her work through my eyes, because I think she is already a master of her art.

I’m not here to write about photography per se, but the self-esteem required to be confident in yourself is an underlying theme shared between my perception of Katie’s work and the reason for this article.

We attended a Lady Boss meeting last week with local self-employed women. Most of us are makers as well as entrepreneurs. Everyone at the meeting was extremely encouraging and supportive of one another. All were enthusiastic about each speaker’s presentation, and feedback was freely given. I have honestly never been in a room with so many supportive women.

Katie and I had already arranged to meet up the following day for a photo shoot to promote her new boudoir sessions, so I mentioned the concept to the group, adding that I thought much of what Katie ‘sells’ in her business is empowerment.

The idea kept buzzing around in my head until I wrote down the title for this article and sent it to Katie via text. I truly believe she has the ability to empower women by showing them how beautiful they are. Her work is tasteful, the lighting is exquisite, and she has an eye for the beauty that we so often overlook in ourselves.

The Shoot

I’m not a fancy girl. Most days, I don’t even brush my hair. It’s curly and moisturizing it is more important than fighting a losing battle to style it. I rarely wear makeup. So, when I tell you I sat on a stool for an hour while a makeup artist worked on my face and hair, you should know that I believe in Katie’s vision for this type of photography.

I had arrived with an armload of outfits, several hats, and a few pair of shoes. The next two hours were a whirlwind of posing, changing clothes, staging props, bumping into things, and trying to remember to smile.

Katie’s instructions were great and I felt very comfortable the entire time. She definitely has a vision for the most flattering way to pose a model. When you’re working with her, you can tell she’s thinking several steps ahead in the sequence of photos she plans to take.

Now that I have my photos, I am intrigued to see myself through someone else’s eyes. Katie does a wonderful job catching her subject’s personality and translating their portrait into a story. The sense of intrigue and adventure that she captures makes her work special visually, as well as emotionally.

You can read more about the photo shoot and Katie’s vision on her blog, 12 Gage Photography


2 thoughts on “Empowering Women to see Their Own Beauty

  1. Wow, reading this and Katie’s post has given me good for thought. I love the photos she’s taken of you and think you look amazing. But when I imagine myself in similar photos I know they would look awful. Her thoughts on seeing beauty in others has made me wonder about what beauty really is… Probably not what I’m thinking of when I look at myself. I need to ponder more on her idea of wanting to show what God sees too, that is a really lovely idea.
    Thank you for sharing your thoughts on this experience and well done for helping out your friend in this way.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Julia. I’m pretty self-confident, so it was not difficult to volunteer for the shoot. Katie is such a sweet person and amazing photographer. I love the way she catches the lighting and makes it look like a mysterious adventure is under way.
      I have to admit, I was a little disappointed in myself when I went through the photos for editing and posting. Katie is right; we are always too hard on ourselves. I’m 43 and have a child, my days of having a flat belly and perky breasts are way behind me. That superficial stuff really doesn’t matter anyway.
      I wrote separately about how social media and reality TV make us feel like we always have to be perfect all of the time and only post photos of ourselves or our lives that have been filtered and improved in some way.
      That’s all ridiculous. I look pretty in all of the photos, even the ones with stretch marks and dimples, because they are part of my story. If you have the opportunity to have an art shoot for yourself, you should do it.
      It doesn’t have to be boudoir. Put on a pretty dress, style your hair, and have fun with it. I think Katie is right, we all have something about us that is beautiful, we sometimes need to put away our judgement and really look at ourselves as the world sees us.
      Thanks for reading both posts. I know Katie will be thrilled that she reached you all the way in England and made you reconsider the idea.

      Liked by 1 person

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