One trait that I can not deny about myself is that I have never been any observant person. I don't often pay attention to my surroundings as I'm usually too in my own head at any given moment. My husband, however, is the complete opposite. He notices and remembers nearly everything he hears and sees, making him a very quick learner and very detail oriented.
Ever since we began this photography journey, and I have started watching photography videos on YouTube, obsessing over photographers on Instagram, and watching my husband post process my work, I have noticed a certain change in myself. I pay an immense amount more attention to the small details of everything around me. And I've been missing SO MUCH BEAUTY around me.
I really appreciate this new found attention to detail. I used to find the most mundane things beautiful. Don't get me wrong me wrong, those things are still very nice to look at. Flowers, conventionally attractive humans, birds, etc. But… have you ever really taken a real look at things that people often see as less appealing, and how amazing those “flaws" truly are? The laugh lines and crow's feet of an aging person, showing you how often that person has smiled and enjoyed life? Worry lines showing you the that they have overcome hard times? These things tell a story of that person's life and they are so beautiful to look at. They add interest and help you connect to a soul. A junk yard full of old, broken down cars can be seen as a mess. A waste of space full of junk. But it's also a place full of colors, interesting textures, and history.
Often times in photography, you are forced to stare at a subject or specific situation for longer and with more attention to detail than your average person would feel the need to. You need to be sure that everything in your frame fits the mood and the feel that you want to capture. You need to look at every shadow, every source of light, every strand of hair…. All of the things that can make or break the feel of your photos. And in doing so, you will begin to notice that it's often times the little imperfections, or what would normally be considered as such, that make a subject truly interesting and pleasing to observe.
So next time you look at yourself, or your life, or others, try to look at them with a photographer's eye. Don't think “What is flawless here?” think “What makes this interesting? What makes this unique?” Because that is where you will find the real beauty.. in the less than perfect. That's where true beauty lies.