Through my love of photography and being creative, the images I take have started to become more self expressive in ways that may not be obvious to others. I have been exploring what it means to be represented abstractly and not so literally.
Take the image above. That is me. It is a representation of how I was feeling at the time and as you can see there is nothing to distinguish me – it is impossible to know anything about what I look like, what race , age or gender I am. It is just the way I saw myself the day it was created.
What do you see when you look at the image? Does it invoke a feeling or does it not register with you as anything familiar that you can relate to? Generally not. Most people just see colours that perhaps they like, and maybe ponder for a few seconds on what they are looking at.
It made me reflect on how we can be guilty of not giving someone a chance because we have already judged them by appearances. We miss their soul, their expression and the chance to discover who they really are outside of what they look like when we instantly judge what we see.
I started asking myself; can sight be a hinderance to connection? I pondered how many times I have unconsciously overlooked someone because of a preconceived socially accepted idea I had in my head. It doesn’t feel good to admit that I have been guilty of judging and discounting others before giving them a chance.
Is it possible to over come the initial first impression and to allow connection on a deeper level? I believe it is. When we have empathy and concern for others we can create space in ourselves to welcome anyone into our sphere, hold space to feel who they are, what their energy feels like, what they stand for and to be fully present to them.
I guess that is what it must be like for people who are blind or partially sighted. Their first impression has to be based on more than what a person looks like. They get a sense of their energy, what it feels like to be around them, and to get to know them without the hinderance of instantly seeing and judging from appearances.
Through my creative expression I attempt to capture the essence of someone, to create a sense of who they are from the images that are my interpretation of them. Do you get a sense of me through the image above? Maybe not, but it doesn’t matter because you didn’t judge me as a person you judged the image in front of you and disassociated it from being a personal self portrait.
Self awareness is such a wonderful opportunity to reflect on patterns and behaviours and to then rectify them or explore where they take you. Is there anything or anyone in your life that you can look at from a different perspective?