The Value of an Image

February 23, 2022  •  Leave a Comment

Recently one of my photos was used with an obituary. It wasn't the first time, and I suspect, it won't be the last. Every time this happens, I am struck. I have grief. Even if I knew the subject for just a short moment, we crossed paths, and the decedent is worthy of reflection. I think about the loved ones who are coping with life sans their sibling/spouse/partner/friend/parent/relative/coworker/classmate. I think this is when I feel the most sorrow.

How do we move forward when someone we care for is no longer with us? Even if they had many years upon this earth, we only know our own lives intertwined with theirs. And if they were here briefly, we lament that we didn't have more time together. There is hardly ever a "right time" to lose someone.

I snap photographs. I meet people with insecurities and show them how beautiful they are. I don't alter their photos to achieve this, I show them by holding up a mirror and saying, "Look, this is you and what you've created. Isn't it incredible?" 

And then, when someone passes away, and the photo that is used to represent the deceased is one that I took? I know that I've done something right. I've captured the essence of the person.

For me, photography isn't about having you pose the way I've instructed the 300 clients before you to pose. It's more about you showing me who you are. Are you comfortable? Is this natural to you? Will this image make your parents and grandparents say, "That's my kid!" 

Capturing portraits is more than a click and a shutter. It's a connection. It's proof that you are here. We all want to see you as you are in this moment. Because it is fleeting. In a few years, you will have changed your hair and your style. Your circumstance will be different. But we will have today captured. And that makes the images truly priceless.


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