Taking a walk with a friend is the best way to hear the best stories. I lead a couple of my friends into a nearby park where we enjoyed the atmosphere and I snapped pictures. I love the candid moments: when a person forgets I have a camera in my hand and then just start talking to me while I leave my capture function on continuous. The minute they turn around and realize I never stopped taking pictures is one of the funniest moments. Wednesday, I spent time with my best friend Chelsea. Words cannot describe how happy I am to have met this girl my first year in college. She is funny and crazy and can keep up with me, and that usually takes a lot out of people.
I realized that while the high fashion photography seems glamorous and wonderful, I am more into natural photography. I suppose it is the journalist in me. I like to see life as it is and capture it at its best (and sometimes worst, but that is a different story). Life is beautiful without the extra help that couture offers art. I love natural light and candid shots, and just letting people be themselves while the camera just records.
I love when my model will ask me to see the pictures and they start flipping through my playback. They always seem happy to see themselves in the pictures--as if they did not see the beautiful things about themselves before I found them. I say it is all about finding the right angles. Which, to an extent, is true. However, it does not take much to find those wonderful features that make up the beautiful people in our world. While some people may not be considered a "classic beauty," they still have something about them that gravitates others to them--whether it is something in their eyes or something in their smile.
I fully believe the eyes and smile are windows into our souls. You can tell a lot about a person through how big they smile, how strong they laugh and how bright their eyes shine with every emotion. It does not take thick mascara, tons of foundation or even eyeliner to prove you are beautiful. It just takes a sincere heart. The best thing about Wednesday was when I got a message from my best childhood friend, Melody, telling me her grandmother died, Chelsea was there to witness an emotion she had yet to see in me: true sadness turned to crying. I knew Melody's Nana pretty well, and it pained me to know that my best friend had lost a relative who was incredibly close to her. I wish I could be there for the funeral and comfort her, but I will be there later and I am with her in spirit. I am happy because Melody realizes she has more love in her life than she could ever wish. And I am happy because Chelsea was there to help me through it and help me realize I have the same love in my life.
Today was just as enjoyable. After walking around with Eric, we ended up in the same park as Wednesday. Same as always, we ended up talking about everything under the sun and even finding stupid ways to amuse ourselves. Recently, he started dating my good friend, Savannah, and I could not be more happy for the two of them. Finally, they both have someone substantial in their lives. I hope it works out for the best. In fact, when I am able to dig up information about a monastery I visited a few years ago, he said he was going to take Savannah and I there and I will finally get some pictures of a couple! Nothing is more beautiful than capturing a couple at their most candid and their closest moments. Lately his conversations have revolved around her, but not in an annoying way. He just spent a lot of time with her over our spring break, so he has a lot to talk about involving her. And I do not mind one bit. She is a friend I love dearly, so talk of her is just as if I were mentioning her.
It is fun taking pictures of Eric because he understands I am going to take random pictures sometimes and he actually enjoys looking at the pictures where I caught him off-guard or in the middle of a conversation. He is a guy, after all--he is more likely to laugh off the weird pictures than to say, "Ew, I look gross here!" He, too, looked through my playback and amused himself with the awkward positioning of his mouth and hair. (And I say "hair" because that boy cares more about his hair than Uncle Jesse from Full House.)
I am very pleased with all the shots I collected this week, and I enjoyed the wonderful weather and conversations.
But alongside all the wonderful thoughts, I do not want anyone to forget what I mentioned earlier about my best friend losing her Nana. I wish that each and every one of you would pray for her family's healing, and if you do not believe in such a thing as prayer at least keep her in your thoughts. They need all the support they can get. If I had lost my Nanna after her heart attack, I am not sure how strong I would have been. Melody is a rock, and it kills me that I am not with her to hold her, but she knows I love her and I hope she knows I will do more when I see her again.