Beauty is in the eye of the beholder

Jessica Cedarland is my good pal and an incredible photographer based in South Carolina.  We shared some intensely funny moments at BlissDom this year.  Here are some thoughts she had after this year’s incredible conference…

“They” say beauty is in the eye of the beholder. They say beauty is skin deep. They, say all sorts of things.

But what do you say?  How do you see beauty?  How do you see others’ beauty? Do you compare yourself to others? Do you doubt your own beauty?

Beauty isn’t in the eye of the beholder; beauty is in your eyes. It’s how you see yourself, not how “they” see you.

This week, I had the opportunity to work with hundreds of women. All sorts of them. Women who I knew had it together. Some with self-doubt. Some felt beautiful and some not so much. But what was interesting was how I intervened with their doubtful thoughts. I was doing headshots of women bloggers.

I love diversity. It’s what makes life interesting. Well, there was a lot of diversity here!  Over 800 women attended the BlissDom 2012 conference in in Nashville, TN. I was overwhelmed with diversity. Women from every part of this amazing country, gathered together for one purpose. To network and learn from each other.

This is where my intervening comes in. Hundreds of those women sat in my chair; in my photo studio set up. The lights were white hot. The backdrop pure and ready for the perfect picture. It was all there. They were all there.

Then I began the shoot.

One after the other, women bloggers came in for their professional headshot. What a gift for these women. A professional headshot from a professional photographer, all courtesy of One2One Network.

Each woman sat in my chair with a hint of fear and anxiousness in their eyes. Some smiled through it; others froze in fear. But they all wanted the same thing. That “perfect shot.”

So that’s what I gave them. It’s not about snapping the portrait to get to the next one; it was paying attention to details. Helping them with fly-aways, lint, makeup smudges, even baby spit up…all by talking each woman through it.

I was surprised to hear from a majority of the women mumble these sad and vulnerable words,

“I take horrible pictures” or “ I don’t like how I look in pictures!” or “Make me look beautiful!”

These statements were reiterated over and over again throughout the conference. Big, little, tall, short… it didn’t matter. Almost all of them seemed nervous, insecure, unsure.

So we talked. We talked, we primped, and we took a lot of photos. Until they felt beautiful. That’s all it takes.

Talk to your girlfriends, talk to strangers. People need affirmation that you see them, and that they are beautiful. Take the time and pay attention to details in others lives. It was so rewarding. For me, the most incredible feeling was working with these women, talking to them, encouraging them.

They were good in pictures, they WERE beautiful, and they all had it in them!  The beautiful parts of them were hiding.  They each faced their fears of ‘how’ the camera saw them, and let go of that fear, and showed me who they are on the inside…BEAUTIFUL!

That was my reward. To show them their portrait, and to hear them say “Wow!! That’s amazing! That’s me?” and to see that they got it. The beautiful inside that others see, and that we often miss.  That’s my reward.

Take the time to encourage and talk to those in your life. Help them bring out their inner beauty, so that they are free from those horrible chains of self -destruction and doubt. Free yourself, look deep inside and breathe…. That’s your beauty!

 A-C headshots

D-F headshots

D-I headshots

J-L headshots

M-O headshots

P-R headshots

S-T headshots

U-W headshots

X-Z headshots

About meesh

Meesh has a passion for people, creative projects, and technology. She enjoys painting furniture back to life, gardening, playing with her kids, and connecting people.


  1. Gammaboots says

    this is ever so true and how amazing each and every woman truly is beautiful…