everybody has a mask

Rachel and I met last year during a photo shoot I was invited to participate in with photographer Lynette Smith, for Bella Sera Bridal Boutique in Wenatchee. Rachel is the granddaughter of Cindy Cordell, the co-owner of the shop and they asked her to model some dresses that day. Rachel hadn’t done much modeling up until that time, as she is just 15 years old, so she seemed a little apprehensive…

I believe that everyone can be a model… if they trust their photographer and are willing to listen. And Rachel did just that. She listened and no matter how particular I was about where her chin, or arm, or forehead was she followed my direction…without question. I’ve talked about this before, but it bares repeating: there is a moment when I am photographing a person and they begin to trust me and then relinquish control to me and suddenly the images become a true reflection of who that person really is. It is… well, magic.

The barriers that we put up in order to appear a certain way to others mask what we truly look like. My aim is to peel away those layers and to get to the heart of who you are, what you really look like. I can honestly feel when a person lifts that mask and shows me who they really are and it is beautiful. Personally, I have a hard time letting go in front of a camera. I resort to what I *think* I should do to look good, rather than just being myself. As a photographer, I truly understand how hard it is to just let go…  and so I guide you through it. And while I am guiding you, I am slowly working to find out who you are really under those layers. Some people get it quickly and trust me implicitly right away. Others need a little more time before they put their faith in me to do my job as a professional. But, I guarantee that when you finally let go, I see your beauty and the transformation from fake to real is breathtaking.

It happened for Rachel almost right away the first time I photographed her and so when we got together for our model shoot this past Sunday, I knew we were going to have some fun! And while Rachel claims she was freezing the whole time and got a little tired about half way through, she stuck with me as we created fantastic, real, and I’d say breathtaking images of her. Thank you Rachel for trusting in me.


Hair and makeup: Kristi Blair Concentrics Salon

Dresses, shoes and hair accessories: Bella Sera Bridal Boutique

Sequin shirt: Etcetera Boutique

My question for you: do you wear a mask? What does that mask look like? What does it take for you to remove that mask? (okay, that’s three questions…)

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