After a photo session with a client, I love to race home and immediately pore over the photos we took. It’s like Christmas morning, except I know what all the presents are, and it’s way more fun to share them with others. I’ll plug in my card reader, boot up Lightroom on my desktop with the big monitor, and scroll through each image. I delete the ones with half-closed eyes and weird expressions, and pause to admire the beautiful and fun shots we got. The scene will replay in front of me: the chaos of little feet; the giggles of delight as parents tickled little bellies; the gummy open-mouthed kisses from the baby.
Most of the images are sharp as a tack. I care about that. I love beautiful images of kids with their eyes sparkling with laughter, so sharp and clear you can drown in them. The majority of the blurry images get tossed immediately. My professors taught us in school that if an image wasn’t technically perfect, the subject didn’t matter. If it’s not sharp, any imperfections would overshadow the image, and shouldn’t be what you put out into the world. They taught me well, but occasionally a blurry image still gives me pause.
Sometimes a shot is so poignant, the moment so beautiful, that I include it even if it’s not technically perfect. The emotion an image conveys sometimes makes me throw it out into the world even with its imperfections. Not everyone would agree with that, and even I would argue against myself sometimes. But when the moment is right, sometimes perfection doesn’t matter.
Speaking of perfection, come back to the blog next week when I argue that pictures of you aren’t for you.