Let me start by saying that I’ve already published this post. And then I unpublished it. It’s been quite the roller coaster ride around here, folks, and I have my hands up in the air to prove it!
The day I hit Publish the first time a few weeks ago I was in a good place. But within an hour a wave of shame took over me. Everything about the image and all the content around it suddenly seemed gratuitous and unnecessary. It’s amazing how twisted perceptions can defunk even the funkiest of us, and it’s because I’ve been grappling with my personal image since becoming a professional in the fitness industry.
On some level you have to walk the talk. I don’t EVER want any of my clients to feel like they’re training with or taking advice from a phony. I am very much about integrity in my work and my personhood. It’s who I am.
On another level, though, you have to be careful to not intimidate or otherwise discourage your clients with unrealistic images or expectations of how THEY should look or perform. After 3 years even I still struggle with comparing myself to others.
So you can see that I’ve been really stuck in the very gray area that I’ve created for myself. And I’ve now found a comfortable new place where I should have been all along. Just being me. Cassye. The Transformer. The Coach. The Trainer. The 40+ Female Trying to Make Sense of This Industry While Trying to Put my Readers and Clients First.
What you’re about to read came from a good place. I feel like it’s useful and I chose this picture because it’s the only one I really have that shows enough of what I’m talking about to get my points across.
Thank you for letting me blather on about why I posted and unposted it. I guess I needed the permission somehow.
As you may have noted in my Picture Prep post, getting photo ready takes a village and a surprising amount of personal time and money. With the accompanying image to today’s post, you may think I’m about to get all negative on you. But I’m not.
I am not here to tear this photo apart. I love this photo, despite all the effort and manipulation it took to achieve it. Is it a natural depiction of me snapped on any given day of my ordinary existence on this planet? No. However, at the end of this particular day it’s still me, at age 44, looking pretty good.
This photo is 2 years old – I am now 46. I have plenty of unflattering everyday shots already, and given my recent battle with injuries and life balance, there is a very distinct possibility that I will NEVER look like this again.
I’ll need images like this anyway, when I’m 93 and want to stir the pot at the nursing home. I’m thinking candids of me feeding lorikeets at the zoo won’t cut it.
My real point with all of this is that everyone has the potential to look amazing! There is absolutely no shame in using everything you have at your disposal to create positive images that you will have to look back on and savor. Why do we wear make-up? Why do we do our hair? To look and feel our best. It’s the same concept here. Photography is art, so why not use that creative outlet to manifest something wonderful to celebrate all that you’ve achieved?
Yes, these photos are carefully constructed. They are retouched (or Photoshopped). Just like most wedding portraits. Is that the kind of life event it’s going to take to get the most flattering new images of yourself in hand? For some of us, that’s the last time we really had a say in how we were photographed. We chose the hair, make-up, clothes, backdrop…the whole shootin’ match. Even if you had individual portraits taken during your last family session with a photographer, I’m willing to bet they didn’t come out exactly the way you wanted to because you came dressed for the group.
My goal with the photo is to help you with using all the tips and tricks to your advantage should you choose to hire a photographer for just you. Whether you don a revealing outfit to showcase your transformation, or a favorite dress that makes you feel absolutely beautiful, you owe it to yourself to create your very own highlight reel.