Monday, July 20, 2009

Delusional Reality

Why are so many of us hiding behind the camera? Why are we using Photoshop or some other software program to enhance our images? More importantly, why can’t we just be ourselves? For those who don’t know what I am talking about (or should I say, for those in denial), allow me to offer you a few examples.

A friend of mine was showing me his company’s corporate employee directory. Many of the pictures contained in this directory were enhanced, not by the company, but by the employees. I know this because I’ve met several of these people at social events and private parties, and I was astonished to see the difference. It was like night and day. There were some women who gave themselves instant facelifts and whiter teeth, but when I saw them in person, they looked tired, were 10 years older and many had stained teeth.

The men were no different from the women. Men like to act as if they don’t care about their looks, but they do. Two pictures stand out in my mind the most. One gentleman, who had significant hair loss, smoothed out his high forehead so much that it looked like a baby’s bottom. (Later, on a separate social networking Internet site, he cut and pasted hair to the front of his head to minimize his receding hairline.) The other man, who had a large stomach, reduced it by 70% to create an entirely different person (LOL).

I have a friend who is in his mid 50s and works out daily. He has a beautiful physique, but not the best face. He is currently looking for a relationship. He posts pictures of himself online. I’ve seen the pictures, and he manipulates the photos to make his body look larger and smoother, yet his body is perfect as is. As for his face, he does these angle shots to manipulate the contours of his face (a major deception), but when you see him in person you have to ask yourself, “Is this the same guy?”

I was visiting a local art gallery in Fells Point over the weekend. When I walked into the gallery there was a picture of the artist looking svelte, handsome and youthful. I saw a man working on some paperwork in the gallery and thought he was an employee, but he turned out to be the artist. In reality, he was overweight, gray-haired and had many lines running thought his face. His picture was very deceiving.

There are many more examples of photography deception, and you can see them on Facebook, MySpace and relationship sites, and the list goes on and on.

Why can’t you just be yourself? Why are you ashamed to show the real you? It’s true when they say a picture is worth a thousand words. However, it’s worth a million words when you spend more time manipulating and airbrushing your photos because people are going to use those words to talk, and most of the time the talk is not going to be good.

Instead of manipulating your photos, you should be working on yourself. We all want to look our best. Why not use a little hair dye to minimize the gray? Stop by the cosmetic counter at the local department store and learn how to apply your makeup appropriately. Begin an exercise regimen to loose the spare tire. Go to the dentist and get your teeth cleaned, and brush them twice each day. Wear age-appropriate clothing. There are so many things you can do to enhance your image and make you feel more positive about yourself so you don’t have to “fake an image.” No matter what, you must accept the coming of age. There is no escape.

Don’t forget that beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Don’t be afraid to show the real you. Altering and manipulating your photos is a deception and a lie you perpetuate and tell yourself. I can’t say this enough, BE REAL! We must be real in every part of our lives.

The most important, honest and meaningful words I can share with you that speak to my heart, mind, soul and spirit are these: “Age is just a number.” Lines and wisdom are value. Character is the most important because it shows your true value and worth.

If you deceive others with a photo, isn’t possible for you to deceive in other ways? It’s something to think about. Now smile for the camera. - paerki

What would life be like without memories? It’s fair to say, there would be no life at all. Memory is our communication, reason, coherence, our action and more importantly, our feeling. Memories create our path in life, developing our psychology and leading us emotionally.

One of the best ways to create and store memories is with video. These simple effortless little snippets of time create diaries and become perpetual time capsules, which justify our walk on earth, telling all with great enthusiasm… I was here! I mattered! I lived! Please, don’t forget me.

Share your views, thoughts and opinions in the written word. Snap photographs so that your eyes can travel back in time, remembering the happy and sad moments that made you the person you were, are and became in life. But, whenever possible, capture video to enhance the memories you leave behind, so that others may pass the essence of your life on to future generations.

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I love photographs! They have this amazing ability to tell stories of fun places, special moments, memorable events, and exciting places. They give us reason to pause and remember friends, family, coworkers and so many others. One photograph can conjure up a flood of memories taking us on a journey. They help us remember the past, enjoy the present and ponder the future.

On a cold and rainy day I love sitting in my living room with a roaring fire, a glass of wine, classical music playing in the background and my many photographs scattered about me. I love sifting through what I call my special collection, which refers to my favorites. They remind me of the saddest and happiest moments of my life. They remind me of challenges and overcoming.

My large collection of images are a testament to a life lived. Life happens all around us so it’s important to collect special memories, and what better way than with a photograph.

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No matter what, know this: You are never alone. There are people out there who’ve struggled, endured, made it through and are sharing their message of survival. No, they might not be at your side, but their spirit is out there in words, attempting to help others on their journey. Let’s all unite by sharing our individual stories, remedies for healthy living, food and recipes to keep us strong, and let’s find the laughter too because it can be some of the best medicine. Always remember, there is power in numbers. Check me out: A Celiac On The Move

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"I distrust those people who know so well what God wants them to do because I notice it always coincides with their own desires." - Susan B. Anthony

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