I wrapped up the last of the special headshot sessions I’d provided my classmates. Thank you first of all to everyone who took the plunge to share their time and a piece of their lives with me. I specifically chose just the ladies for this blog post because I want to take the opportunity to remind you how beautiful you all are.
There are more than enough sources out there that bring us down. Magazines with pictures of women with unreal faces photoshopped to the point where we all believe that under-eye shadows don’t belong. Forums and blogs where internet trolls say horrible things about women they’d never say to their mothers. Even at parties and weddings, I hear and observe women judging one another.
In the end, my photographs cannot happen if you don’t believe in your own beauty. I can’t make you believe that you are beautiful. You need to believe it first, and to get there – and I know this can be hard – you have to learn to love yourself and put yourself above the noise, above all the people who don’t see you for the real you. In the end, they do not matter.
I can help you, but you must be open to believing in the existence of beauty in your life
Getting there is a process. The first step is the desire to be a better person
Reward yourself. Acknowledge all the amazing and good things happening in your life and what they have brought you to, thus far
Recognize that there will always, always be things beyond your control. The weather. A zit. Don’t worry about those, because no one else can change them either
If you have people who cherish you in their lives, don’t be afraid to ask for affirmation! It sure doesn’t hurt for me to hear from my parents how proud they are of me, or from my boyfriend how awesome he thinks I am
Rise above cattiness, judgment, and jealousy yourself. To become beauty, we must embody it, inside and out
Give yourself me-time and fun-time. For some ladies, it might mean manis and pedis, for others, it could mean paintball. Whatever it is, do something that makes you smile
Give back to others. There is no purer form of joy than that derived from doing something for people who have no means, no power, no ability to give you anything back
Recognize that life will have its ups and downs. There is beauty in pain, too. Make sure that you surround yourself with people who will be there to prop you up when you need a hand, and also who will celebrate in your success
Be open to change – and know that change does not come easily. However, be on the lookout for opportunities where you can continue to change into the best version of yourself
Love yourself first, always. It will lead to amazing things
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Shang Chen Photography has rebranded to Saavedra Photography
she takes photographs of celebrations of love and life
Based in NYC | Open for select photography commissions on Sundays only