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What is Real?


People born in and beyond the 20th century grew up with photographic images as their point of reference for how they look to others. Most of us seldom question the way the camera presents our image.

Many people believe they are unattractive because they do not photograph well and they believe that they look the way the camera records their image. In reality cameras and lenses do not see the same way the human eye does. We rarely look to others like our photos because glass camera lenses distort our images in all kinds of ways. Cameras cannot record the vast degrees of values and colors present in the real world. Lenses do not present depth of field the way the human eye does. Our eyes focus on what catches our attention such as someone’s beautiful eyes and the rest falls out of focus. Photographs exaggerate shadows and flatten features which may or may not be flattering.

So if you think you look like your photograph you may be surprised to see the way an artist paints you is very different. The artist has the freedom to emphasize and delete, to enhance, correct, invent, and select. The lens the artist uses is her thoughts, emotions, and intuition. If I could select only one lens for myself…that would be my choice. I am always amazed at what I see through my own lens.

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