Tag Archives: featured

Everyone’s Beautiful

I once heard my friend Karen say that every woman deserves a beautiful picture of herself! We work in what tends to be a very shallow profession, one where beauty captures the headlines and the rest of us “real” people sometimes watch from the sidelines.

Think about the people in your life, outside of my workshops I really don’t know too many models… However, I know a lot of “beautiful” people! My job as a photographer is to capture that beauty; I want those that step away from my lens to go away with a photo that captures their beautiful self.

I have a short video from a client shoot, the client agreed to let us video the session to create this for you. I want you to come away with two things; first, I approach every client the same way and do my best to make them look as beautiful as I can. Secondly, there is something I try to stress in every workshop, and that is, keep moving! Get those few good shots and then either you move or they move…

If you are in the business or looking to get into the portrait business, it’s very hard to sell two of the same shots. So, when you get it right, change it up and create a different photo for them to purchase…


Mark Behrens
www.lightingasylum.com – Learn how to light
www.lookpw.com – Attend a live workshop

What is real beauty? Are you looking for it? (Part 2)

Occasionally we need to be quiet if we want to see beauty, if you’re finding it hard to find a subject to photograph maybe it’s because you’re being so loud that you miss the beauty all around you.

Steam engine builder
It’s not until the shop goes quiet that we see the love for his craft really come out, just try and stop him from talking about past projects.

Let’s talk about poetry, they say the poet says in twenty words what the author takes a thousand pages to say. The poet composes with words, using only the most important ones…

sometimes the beauty is because of what has been left out

How about trying to compose your next photo with poetry, poetry doesn’t contain everything, sometimes the beauty is because of what has been left out.


Remember when a mentioned the photo of my son with his new baby sister? Sometimes beauty is deep and comes from meaning… Do you want to make more meaningful photos? The answer is simple, photograph something that means something to you.

Christopher looking back
One of my favorite personal photos, I can still hear my son yelling “come on Dad, the beach”!

I’m sure you have heard this expression “The eyes are the window to the soul”? I believe it! More often than not beauty is found in the eyes. Try making a portrait where they steal the show.

The eyes have it.
There is no doubt that the eyes are the subject here.

Beauty is all around you, are you willing to look for it? When you do; the ordinary becomes extraordinary! To just sit and wait for beauty to find you… Now that’s a sin, it’s just sad… Go seek it out, you’ll find it, I promise.

Family time
Nothing more beautiful than special moments with family. So beautiful that all the late nights, sickness and bad attitudes are worth it…

“Ring the bells that still can ring
Forget your perfect offering
There is a crack in everything
That’s how the light gets in.” – Leonard Cohen

My good friend Boris Borisov inside the giant kilns outside of Death Valley

You’re a photographer, look for life’s imperfections, these are how the light gets in.

Read part one, did you miss it?

What is real beauty? Are you looking for it? (Part 1)

Have you ever really thought through the idea of beauty? Is it a tangible thing? Sure it is, however beauty really is in the eye of the beholder. Let’s look at an example, I can show you a photo of my son with his hair all a mess and a smile filled with missing teeth and all I see is beauty. I don’t see beauty just because he’s my son, I see beauty because I know that smile on his face is there because also in this photo is his brand new one day old sister, he’s no longer JUST a little brother… He’s now a BIG brother!

My son with his little sister
He’s no longer just a little brother… He’s a big brother!


Beauty can be found in the most unusual of places. Sometimes beauty is profound, I can be heard in the lyric of a song, speaking of such things as redemption, victory even loss. Every time I hear Steven Curtis Chapman sing about the loss of his young daughter I don’t hear despair, I hear beauty. Sometimes the flaw in beauty is bigger than a physical flaw, it can be loss…


So many times beauty is not found in order or symmetry but it’s found in the scars and imperfections. Think about that odd beauty left behind after a forest fire, can you see those beautiful dark scars framed by a brilliant sunset…

Burned forest
There is beauty in the scars


Helen Keller once said, and I’m paraphrasing “the most beautiful things in this world cannot be seen or touched, they must be felt”.

Baby girl
Nothing more beautiful than the unconditional love of a child.


I so love photos of people who have let their guard down, when they are not trying to fake a smile, when they are just being themselves. I think this is why I’m drawn to the works of Richard Avedon or Irving Penn; both photographers had this ability to capture the soul of a person rather than the face they are trying to show the world.



Stay tuned for part two…

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