(Not) Photoshopped

Blog_CameraConfession: on multiple occasions I’ve been tempted to ask my tech-savvy husband to photoshop my pictures. And on a couple of occasions, I’ve almost followed through. Though my husband is expert in all things graphic design, I wouldn’t have been happy with the results save for the red-eye removal. I’d rather be real than photoshopped.

Still, I hate having my picture taken and only do it now to preserve memories for my children. My sister was always the photogenic one, with the perfect smile. It takes about a hundred shots for me to take a decent picture, and even then I only like the ones where my super-cute kids draw attention away from me.

Even now the only profile pictures I use consist of me and my kids. My preferred gravatar shows only my face, but if there were space to pan out you’d see that I’m holding my daughter. The day my husband took the picture, we’d gone to take some professional family photos with my in-laws. None of the professional pictures turned out, but the one my husband took is among the few photos I like of me because it captures a moment of genuine contentment and joy—not fake and forced as in a photo shoot.

Maybe my aversion to selfies is a result of pride, not wanting my flaws on permanent display in photo format. Or maybe I only like the ones with my kids because I’m most relaxed and real when with them. In those pictures, I’m laughing, joyful, genuine, not posed. They make me feel beautiful.

Yes, I’m content with how God made me. But I realize it’s who he’s made me that determines beauty. As the Bible says, beauty doesn’t come from external things, as the world would have us believe. It comes from the heart. My children make me feel beautiful because I know I’ve sacrificed for them, and would give my life for them if needed. They’ve seen me at my best and at my worst, and they love me still. They’ve seen me in my most real, most raw moments—unphotoshopped, and somehow find the beauty in it. And that’s how God sees me, too, because he looks beyond the surface and into my heart.

Photo Credit: Free stock photos of analog camera · Pexels

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4 comments

  1. Jen, I related to this, too, but really, isn’t it a shame we judge so harshly the creation God considers so beautiful and beloved? I pray we learn to gaze upon ourselves with the love and affection God has for us.

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    1. Susan, I agree! Because I live in this image-obsessed world, I’m tempted to succumb to feelings of discontent with my comparison to the photoshopped images that pervade our culture. Yet I know who I am in Christ, and that in him I am fearfully and wonderfully made. I hope not to undermine that in this blog post, but to share the honest struggle and outcome. In the end I know that it’s what God sees in me (and the fact that he made me in his image) that makes me beautiful, as is true for every one of us he created. Thanks for your comment & God bless.

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