Yesterday the weather got GORGEOUS here in Vancouver, like spring in January. So after doing some work at a nearby cafe, I headed over to my favourite community garden to see if there were any more flowers blooming and just to savour the warm air.
I walked by a small koi pond that they have at the edge of the garden. I take photos there often but today I thought…how could I take this from a different angle than my usual shot?
So I propped my iPhone lengthwise (a great trick if you don’t have anything to prop it against) and went over to the other side of the little pond. I let myself move however my body wanted to as the camera clicked and took a number of photos.
When I looked at the photos I was totally shocked as this was not at all the kind of photo I thought I was taking. Being backlit and silhouetted it made it look like early evening while it was actually still really bright outside and only late afternoon. Of course I was totally happy with the shot yet totally in awe of how different our photo can come out than we expect it will.
That’s one of the things I adore about seeing the world through our cameras. It’s often not what we expect or what we can even see with our eyes. There is such magic in that. Time and time again the camera helps me tell stories in ways I couldn’t have imagined or expected, having them come out much more magical than I could have planned.
Here’s the thing though. When people tell me about their resistance to taking selfies or about how they feel about themselves in photos and the stories they see in their photos, it is absolute. They are sure they are not photogenic or they hate photos of themselves. It’s a conclusion they’ve made and I hear in their voice that they don’t expect to see a different result (but are willing to try).
So it makes me SO happy when they take Be Your Own Beloved and the unexpected happens and they come to the group to share their awe of the photo they just took and the woman they see in it, in themselves..
That is what is so incredible about taking our own photo. We truly can’t predict what type of photo is going to appear. And it is really the opposite of absolute.
It is expansive.
Full of potential.
We truly can’t know what photo will appear, especially if we really let ourselves out of our comfort zone and experiment. Of course, some of them will be the kind of photos we are used to but when we don’t stop when we usually put down the camera and keep shooting…the unexpected appears.
I have a feeling if you love taking photos, you’ve experienced one or many of these moments of seeing something entirely unexpected through your lens.
So why can’t this be true of taking our own photo too?
This is really what the process of the Be Your Own Beloved is about. Well, and life too. Giving you permission to experiment and keep taking photos after when you might normally put the camera down. To help you experience the unexpected in you and to see yourself in a new way!
So next time you try taking a selfie and notice yourself sure of what the outcome will be before you’ve even taken the photo…let’s choose to stay open to possibility, to the unexpected not just from our camera but from ourselves!