There are three things in life that really bring out my awkward side.
1. Silence. I feel the need to fill it.
2. Elevator rides- usually because of the silence.
3. Having my picture taken. I was not blessed with the photogenic attribute. Not even a little.
I write because I love to tell stories and I’m not a good public speaker. I write because I’m not photogenic. So it really threw me for a loop when I was “strongly recommend” to provide a picture and bio for my book and the publishing website. Ugggh.
I begged my sister to help me out, as she is building her photography company. (Studio 308) We both knew it wasn’t going to be easy. One does not simply sit for a picture, and not get awkward. I felt the need to talk back to the camera, hoping it would project a ‘friendlier’ face. “Hello! Oh, I would love to have lunch with you! Chipotle? How did you know? I agree, hormone-free range chicken is the way to go!” Talking to the camera did not end up helping. In the end, I just ended up with more awkward pictures.
You can imagine my relief when the idea for my book cover photo shoot this past Saturday was to be ‘shot’ from behind. Oh thank god, we don’t have to work with my face. Anna, my other photographer and best friend was also relieved- as she knows all too well that I am “photo-challenged.” http://annaliseriley.zenfolio.com/
So this past Saturday, four of my good friends that I served with in the Navy and I lined up in flight suits at parade rest. We looked on as if we were gazing out into space at the great unknown- imagining this secret aircraft to be photo-shopped in the future as flying by. As we stood there, it was silent. And we were being photographed. Naturally, I could not just stay silent.
“Thank you so much for coming today," I began chatting as Anna clicked on. "I really appreciate your help on an early Saturday morning. So how’s everything? How are the kids? Any plans for Halloween? You must be retiring soon! What are your plans after retirement? I can’t believe it’s been that long…” This went on and on- for as long as the photo shoot did. Then we would move to another place to find better lighting, and the mostly one-way conversation began all over again.
Finally, when it was all done, I believe everyone breathed a collective sigh of relief. It was over. We got the shot. And I could finally stop talking.
“Happy Halloween!!” I called out and waved as the grown men drove away. Yes, I’m so awkward. But in the end, thanks to an amazing photographer, we nailed the shot. So awkward or not, my cover for my novel is done! Whoo-hoo! We are so close to the final printing phase I can taste it. And I could not be more excited and/or in disbelief that this moment is so near.
I cannot release the book cover just yet, as it is not quite complete. However I'll post my not-as-awkward photo that we ended up using for the bio. (found at https://tactical16.com/) I labeled it in the "Not Horrible" folder. And thank you Liz and Anna for putting up with me always.
Photo Credits Studio 308