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Just having fun…Self Portraits

December 14, 2010

So some of you may remember me talking about the awesome experience I had a few weekends ago at the MeRa Koh’s Confidence workshop in San Francisco. I wrote about it here. One of the things I went into that workshop realizing was that life had me so uptight in the last few years that I forgot how to let go of my cool, calm demeanor and just have fun. Like many women, I also had become somewhat self conscious of certain characteristics that were often displayed in my pictures. This is crazy because, believe it or not…in my younger more carefree years…I aspired to me a model. However, God and being a mere  5 feet had other plans for me.  Fast forward to now. Although I will often turn the camera on myself, mainly because I want a record of my existence here for my children, I rarely share those images with others. When I do, I am very critical. The funny thing is that one of my biggest self criticisms is that “my smile” is too big. <insert dramatic pause here> Yes…I complained about my smile for goodness sakes. Since a smile shows joy and pleasure, how in the world can it be too big? Funny enough, most compliments I get are when I smile. Get the trend here…female…hard on myself….perfection seeking…etc. shown here: Although none of these photos are taken by me , it’s just my way to show me having fun, embracing my smile and living out loud on the other side of the camera.


(picture taken by Nicholle Peterson)

While at the Confidence Workshop, one of the things I heard repeatedly and that really sunk in was…MeRa, Nicky, and Genie saying,…I am saying it out loud and posting in here for the world to see…"Never be ashamed or try to hide my smile again!” My smile is …ME!


(photo courtesy of SF Confidence Workshop)

I have a dear friend, more like a sister, who always tells me that once one gets to know me, they then see how funny, friendly, down to earth and silly I can be. She challenged me again recently, post workshop, with the question of “Why do people have to get to know me before I let the “total” me show? I decided she is right. So the following pictures were not taken by me, but by another of my good friends who took my camera out of my hands and challenged me to get on the other side , let my hair down…or out , you might say, and just have some fun.  MeRa also did this at the workshop. So I rocked my husband’s “70’s wig and got in touch with my inner child! They are not technically sound, or perfect…but they are me. The lighting is harsh, but I still really like them. Maybe I like the inner me that they give a visual insight to. Either way, I hope you enjoy getting to see another dimension of me. Because…when I am holding the camera in front of you…I want you to be completely comfortable being YOU! It was so much fun getting in front of the camera for a change! This exercise that I challenged myself to was also timely because there is an awesome contest going on right now on the Going{4}Pro website regarding “About “ pages and the necessity to include a Self Portrait with your face in it on your  page. Check it out here also.

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Finally the serious me…

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These photos taken by my friend and poet, James Landrum.

9 Comments leave one →
  1. December 14, 2010 10:14 pm

    These photos are so fun Charisse! You have a beautiful smile and your demeanor seems very open and friendly. I’m glad you decided to share these photos of yourself. I know it’s weird being in front of the camera instead of behind it, but it can also be very liberating to show off your unique self.

    Great post :)!

    • Charisse permalink*
      December 15, 2010 7:09 pm

      Thanks Ariane for the compliment! For awhile, life had somewhat gotten in the way and I realized that I started to hide myself abit more. That’s one of the reasons for turning my the camera on myself and getting back to the “uninhibited” me. You are right, it has definitely been liberating!

  2. December 15, 2010 3:10 am

    So crazy proud of you Charisse! You have the most beautiful smile, and I love that you are sharing it with the world!! These photos are GREAT! I love them all! Isn’t it amazing that what we are sometimes most afraid to share is the exact thing that sets people free? I love that your courage brings us with you.


    • Charisse permalink*
      December 15, 2010 7:13 pm

      Oh Me Ra, seriously…thank you! As we have discussed, you were “right on” target with your intuition regarding me. I am not sure if you realize how instrumental you were in being obedient! Thank you for speaking into me. You and Brian will always have a place in my heart!

  3. December 15, 2010 5:38 pm


    You are so beautiful INSIDE and out!!

    I am so blessed to have you in my life!!!

    • Charisse permalink*
      January 6, 2011 5:29 am

      Thanks Nicky. Honestly, I feel blessed for having you in my life also! Can’t wait to see what 2011 has in store for us.

  4. January 4, 2011 1:54 am

    down with tha wigs! are you using a timer or remote on any of your “real” selfies or just having someone else shoot you? 😉

    • January 5, 2011 12:10 am

      Lynde, the majority of my “self portraits, real or otherwise” are shot by me with a self timer. However, these particular ones on this post were all done by someone else whom I give credit to after the images they took.

  5. maureen WALSH permalink
    January 29, 2011 5:36 am

    Go girl, great photos..

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