The Eyes Have It

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Now I know what Scarlett O’Hara must have felt when she entered her first “society” season.  Actually, I don’t remember whether the Gone with the Wind debutantes had seasons as the young courtiers did during Queen Elizabeth’s reign, but for me, yesterday’s unveiling of my photography business at a local festival beat curtsying to the royals, hands down.

A truly wonderful friend designed my photo booth for me after I went to her asking for advice. She is my go-to person whenever I need props for my daughter’s skating routines, sets for theater productions, etc.  Then she went to Lowe’s with me about 14,000 times before we finally hit on the right design that would be sturdy enough to allow photos to be displayed, be (relatively) easy to transport, and would withstand the Texas wind.

Yesterday’s experienced showed that the design was a success!  The tent above me (borrowed from another great friend) did catch a big breeze and went sailing up and tangled into the tent behind me, but my walls didn’t budge (no tents were damaged in the making of this blog post).

My husband deserves a big batch of cookies (thankfully, I just made some) for his part in my photography party.  He used his past career as a bellman to artfully pack all my materials in the bed of his pickup, transported it to the festival site, and set it up for me despite my flub in memory on how it was all supposed to fit together!

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He snapped this shot of me standing in the sun.  Did I mention it was sunny?  Did I mention I forgot to put on sunscreen?  Did I mention I need to stop slouching? Ouch!

All the other booths had nifty gift bags and giveaways for festival goers.  What was a photographer to offer besides…photography?  I offered FREE photos at my booth and gave out coupons and flyers.  The booth next to me offered face painting, so I used that to my advantage and offered to snap photos of the kids while the parents were waiting in line.  Today I spent (ahem) a large chunk of time briefly editing these photos and emailing them to clients.  The hope is that some will decide to book my services as a result of the free photos I just sent them.

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This is one of my favorites from the day.  As I was editing photos and sending them via email (all 52 of them), it struck me how completely beautiful every single person is.  I prayed for these people who I don’t really know except to have the privilege to capture their personalities on camera.  From the baby with the serious gaze to the enthusiastic little girl who ran off to grab a friend for another photo — a friend she JUST met that day — to the woman who at first didn’t want her photo taken because she wasn’t made up — it was my delight and joy to press that shutter 273 times.

As I prayed this afternoon, I recalled one of my favorite verses, from Psalm 139:

I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
your works are wonderful,
I know that full well.
My frame was not hidden from you
when I was made in the secret place,
when I was woven together in the depths of the earth.
Your eyes saw my unformed body;
all the days ordained for me were written in your book
before one of them came to be.

These beautiful people WERE fearfully and wonderfully made, and I praise God for giving me the opportunity to showcase just how wonderful they all really are.  Life is a precious gift.  The Bible says that we are made in God’s image.  My heart leaps just looking through the expressions in the eyes of the people I photographed yesterday. If our eyes look like this, I imagine those of the Lord will far, far outshine even the batting eyelashes of Scarlett O’Hara herself.

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