Thứ Sáu, 21 tháng 9, 2012

Picture Perfect

Hi! I'm Maggie - a sophomore at BYU studying Photography with a minor in Women’s Studies.  I run a small photography company called Ephemeral Photography- check it out! My sister, Sarah Kate, is also a WSR blogger and I love her very much. Here's a litte poem I wrote about myself:

Mainly laughing and smiling
Always up for an adventure 
Grossed out by sweaty people
Growls like a dinosaur
Ice cream, classy cheese, mangos
Eyes are super squinty

Now that you know me,  let me tell you the story of how I became interested in women's issues.

This summer, I had the opportunity to intern with an amazing photography company as an editor. I was excited to be able to work with and learn from such an amazing photographer, and also to learn the art of photoshop.

At first, she showed me how to adjust the colors and layers to make beautiful effects. The people she photographed were always so beautiful and my editing just enhanced their beauty. Then she taught me how to clean up a couple pimples and imperfections. This seemed fine to me, no one wants to have acne in their pictures and they still looked like themselves. Then I started cleaning up bags under eyes, and fly away hairs.  I started smoothing out skin to perfection and whitening teeth. The changes were not extreme, I was just making them "the best version of themselves" and no harm was done. Or so I thought.

The change came on slowly and suddenly, until one day, I looked in the mirror and I hated what I saw.  I was shocked. I have always been quite happy with the way that I looked. But here I was, staring in the mirror and I hating what I saw. 

I searched for an answer - perhaps I had gained some weight, or maybe it was just because my acne was flaring up. Maybe I had a sunburn or I just needed some sleep.  But everyday, I looked in the mirror and I couldn’t even recognize that person - I was disgusted by what I saw.  

In reality, in the time between pretty and ugly, nothing had changed other than the way I saw myself. In spending my days correcting the flaws of others, that I became stuck on the flaws in myself. 

That was the point where I realized that I needed a different attitude towards photography. I needed to recognize the beauty found in everyone and focusing on the positives rather than the negatives.  I decided to strive to bring out the best in others, rather than just "correcting" their flaws. 

As an insider to the world of photography, I experienced the emotional effects of photography firsthand. However, I am not alone in my experiences. Our world is filled with advertisements telling us how we are supposed to look and it is so easy to fall prey to their campaigns. But just remember, you are more beautiful than any magazine ad or photoshopped image - because you are real.

I am so excited to contribute to this blog and also become more involved with the women’s services and resource center.  

Maggie Melville

On a lighter note, here is a satirical video that I love about these issues.  Enjoy:)

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