Tackeling body issues and more via photos

What happens when you cross a strong-headed girl with an insecure one? I guess me! This photo shoot is from a while ago now, but within this past year. Not so far off from memory that it has enough distance to not sting a little. Sometimes it’s the simple things in life that result in a pivotal moment and sometimes it’s the unexpected. This moment was both of those things combined with my own focus and choices.

I met this photographer via my sisters photo shoot. I saw my sisters band pictures on-line and they were stunning. I was absolutely speechless. (Janets Vice)I’d taken pictures of my sister before and I knew how uncomfortable she was in front of the camera, but these photos looked so natural she was red-carpet worthy! I contacted her immediately to inquire about this photographer she’d worked with. The story got even MORE interesting when my sister told me this amazing photographer was not only fun to work with, but created the ball gown my sister was wearing for her steam punk theme…what my sister had on was nothing even CLOSE to a dress. Unbelievable! I decided to connect with this super-star photographer that evening on Facebook. We hit it off. I decided to make the drive North and see her as fast as I could…my dignatly depended on it. My soul needed it. My music ached for it. I was broke, but making it happen-somehow.

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I’d spent time working on my heart and focusing on reaching that overall health everyone is always talks about. I’d been through a pretty horrible divorce and gained a lot of weight. I love my mother, but at the time, she came a cross pretty judgemental of my new-found weight gain. She’s a tiny little person and let’s just say I didn’t get much from my father, but he did give me his hefty DNA (thanks for the boobs grandma) One day while going about my daily life I became so frustrated with my thoughts, I stopped myself and in what seemed to be a hollywood moment you might see on the big screen, I yelled out loud, “I AM pretty!” Almost like an acceptance of myself and who I was in that moment. I declared it to my empty room and to my noisy mind. My “wasband” took advantage of the weaknesses he married and made them worse…I knew it, but couldn’t get “over it.” I’d battled for YEARS and was somehow still gaining weight. It’s pretty frustrating when you watch what you eat (low intake of bad stuff, up the good stuff in the system) and work out 3 to 5 times a week and still see very little results. I’d been poked with needles, taken numerous tests and still nothing. No change. I’ll blog about that journey later, but you get the idea. I was getting to a point where I had to accept this new body and learn to like it. I was a bigger woman and I wanted awesome pictures to show that big is sexy. I was healthy and made good choices and was NOT lazy. I needed proof for not only others, but for myself. By proclaiming it on film, it would be settled once and for all. Overweight didn’t mean I was a bad or less than any other. I’d bring the photos to my mother and I knew she’d see me with entirely different eyes. Whenever I sang on stage, I could finally let go of the unspoken “get skinny” pressure and instead convey to the audience complete freedom. Or at least those where all my hopes.

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Research also showed me that strategic placement of outstanding video clips and photos can place/set apart anyone trying to break into the entertainment business to what I call the insta-respect-pro bar. It can literally put you on the map and set you apart as someone to be taken seriously. A female vocalist isn’t exactly highly sought after…I mean people please!! This world offers talented beautiful people (inside and out) at a dime a dozen. Anyone who thinks they are the number one female vocalist ever is probably an imbalanced individual and doesn’t have a lot of true real friends. Being lonely is standard practice in the lives of those who strive for the first position. Don’t get me wrong, go out and be confident! Be true to yourself, but be careful. The green monster is a live and well. Greed is right behind it. YUCK! Many talents and performers are insecure…who knows why. (I’m sure that will be another research project and blog someday! ha) With all my own insecurities, I knew I needed to get some amazing photos to use for flyers, my web sites and other promotional materials. I’d love fantastic video, but had no cash (just enough for gas money) so that would need to wait.

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535592_10151451198025690_1087767553_nHeidi Aphrodite photography has since taken my wedding photos, my after-wedding couple shots with my fantastic husband and The Bathtub Gin Serendars promotional pictures.

Here are the other results:

  • I did feel beautiful and began to get closer to the mental healing I was striving for. Heidi Aphrodite Photography painted me how I always felt…and now others saw it too.
  • My mother was spellbound, speechless and after I shared with her how I felt about her nit-picking, tears welled up in her eyes. Her own body issues came flooding out of her mouth and we’ve had many conversations about respecting who we are and how we look ever since. We aren’t perfect, but it’s out in the open now…and that feels freakin’ awesome. The pictures opened her eyes but even better…softened her heart and prepared her for what I had to say. It’s been a beatiful journey with her…love you mom. Thanks for being open to new talking and change.
  • Marketing myself…wow…I really dislike “pimping” myself out, but with these pictures, it’s a hec of a lot easier and I’m taken seriously.  People are sold on me now before I even open my mouth to sing. If you are marketing yourself-GET A PRO to do your photos. No joke, you are wasting everyone’s time and missing gigs by not setting yourself apart with visually stimulating promotional material…Heidi Aphrodite Photography has the gift.
  • My photo was chosen for a year-round poster at a hot local club that houses various styles of live bands every night of the week. I didn’t even submit it! I was asked because they saw it online on Facebook…wha???!? Amazing. Total honor.
  • I’ve gotten used to people giving me the “double-take” look. I see them hunt around in their minds as to why they recognize my face…check that off of the marketing list for this year! 🙂 OK..I’m not USED to it…I still giggle a little bit. I’m not that cool yet…haha
  • I’ve been loosing weight ever since the photo shoot…pretty sure I was hiding behind my body and holding myself back in many ways…including physically. The mind is epically strong…don’t test it. I’m learning to embrace all the complexities inside myself and truly be happy.

I’m a strong believer that photography can be very healing…whenever these pictures cross my eyes, my heart and body respond. I’ll never forget where I’ve come from because of this amazing life changing photography experience. It was NOT EASY, but OH SO worth it. Go do it…that’s my advice. 🙂 Musicians…it’s a MUST. It’s another layer of your artistry…the house your art is held in is just as amazing as the art that comes from it. Let it out-ALL THE WAY.

http://www.jaggerdanceandperformance.com

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2 thoughts on “Tackeling body issues and more via photos

  1. wonderful, heartfelt post ila!! and beautiful pictures to match 🙂 i love you girl!!!

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