As the young mother of twins I have had a lot of body identity issues, but growing up I always felt very confident when it came to my physical appearance. I always got attention for my brown skin and big curly hair and skinny but curvy body, it wasn't until I became pregnant that I really started to struggle with the changes my body was going through and all the things I never knew would not ever be the same again. I found myself always wearing clothes that weren't as flattering on my body just to hide what I thought were flaws like extra skin and stretch marks. It wasn’t until my sons at 5 years old asked “mommy what happened to your tummy?” and I respond with a grandiose story about how I fought off Wolverine in the hospital parking lot on my way to birth them in order to keep them all for myself, as he wanted them to be a part of the X-MEN. My boys were amazed by this and told everyone for weeks how amazing myself and my stretch marks are, and in turn this small story ended up showing me the beauty that I can make out of something that is not viewed as beautiful in this society. From that point on I started looking at myself differently, especially in photos. I began to see a Lioness, a beautiful WOMAN and not a little girl worried about all the wrong things. This allowed me to see all of my inner beauty and that has transpired in to photos of me. When this shoot was presented to me I was really hesitant even though I loved the idea, I just didn’t think I would be good at getting my photo taken... It turns out I’m a pro!
When I came in to the studio with bags of wardrobe in hand I was terrified. The girls at Vev immediately took all the stress away as I found out we all have reservations about being in the spot light and out of our comfort zone which made me feel at home. The amazing team of women at Vev eased my worries and sat me down to start beautifying which was amazing and I felt like they listened to what I wanted to look like and felt no pressure in any way. Posing was a little hard for me as I am no model and have no idea what looks good in a professional shoot but Gia took charge as I desperately was hoping she would and made me feel like a superstar, Jillian was amazing and was kind of like a personal cheerleader reassuring me that I looked smoking hot. Overall the experience was fantastic and I maybe thought I was a model for a few days post shoot. I am so glad I got to do this and see myself in a new light. This shoot gave me a confidence that I am still glowing with and want more of.
Waiting to see my images was the hardest part, but the wait was well worth it. When I first saw my photos I was in shock, I thought to myself “ ummm who is that and how can she be in my life everyday”. This shoot made me feel beyond beautiful. I have referred just about every woman in Portland to this studio because of the boost that I got to myself esteem. There are so many beautiful women out there who if they could see what these photos showed me their self-esteem would be restored, never mind the fact that the overall experience was wonderful. Thank you to Vev Studios for bringing back something I didn’t know was so lost.