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How I feel in front of the camera

There is only one place to be where a camera is concerned, and that is definitely behind it, not in front! I think you can safely say I am camera shy. I have no idea why this is, as when I was younger, I was quite photogenic. But now almost every photo of me results in a goofy grin. As soon as a camera appears, I feel completely self conscious, and desperately hoping this photo will not turn out like the last. Cue goofy grin! The longer the person takes to take the photo, the goofier my grin gets, and the more self conscious I get about it. It just makes me feel awkward. It's a vicious circle. The few good photos that exist of me were captured when I was unaware. Natural photos are always the best anyway. As for why I'm so camera shy, I have no idea! I grew up having my photo taken by keen photographer Dad. It would take what felt like an eternity for him to actually take the shot (he used an SLR camera), but strangely, I was the one out of my brothers and sisters who usually had the most natural looking expression. He never stood close to us with big long lenses either. The closest would have been several metres away. But somewhere down the line I've developed camera shyness, and I have no idea where from or how!

If I'm having my picture taken in public, you can add to that shyness. Suddenly there are people walking past who I just know can see my goofy grin, and I convince myself they're laughing at me. The reality is, they probably don't even know if that is a goofy grin for me, or what my natural smile looks like! They probably don't care either! But at the time, that just makes it harder for me. I know it's silly. In my case, my husband actually comments on the fact I don't truly smile. It's either a grin or straight faced. I wish he'd shut up about it! But even telling him how I hate it seems to make him do it all the more. I also know he'll rarely take the time to try a second photo. So if I look awful in the first, that's the one going in our family album, regardless. No pressure, eh?! I'm honestly much happier behind the camera, than in front of it. Can you tell?

For me personally, I am definitely an introvert. But I can nearly always hide it well. That is, until someone can see through my smoke screen. In this case, with my camera shyness, I believe it stemmed from a couple of bad photos, and my husband picking up on it and commenting. So it has just escalated from something trivial. But when you are self conscious, that's all it takes. Something small like that can trigger it. That's what I think happened with me.

man taking a photo with SLR camera

I have found a couple of tricks that I can use if I know photos are likely to be taken of me. I rarely wear makeup each day (life's too short!), but I feel good when I do wear it. So for any special occasion, or times that I think my photo is going to be taken, such as on a day out, I'll put my face on. I'll also dig out my favourite jewellery, and I'll wear clothes that I feel good in. If I step out feeling good, it's a huge confidence booster, and I can put up that smoke screen a lot easier. It helps. If I've had too many vinos I tend to look great in photos. Perhaps I should get drunk more often?! If anyone has any better tips, please share as I'd love to hear them!

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