*DISCLAIMER: The photos in this blog are of my own wedding & family, "ghosts" are not on display for all to see.
As a photographer who has been shooting weddings, engagements and families for years, sadly I have ghosts in my portfolio. As I scanned through my entire portfolio while I worked on my new website, I saw them.
In a world where more than half of marriages end in divorce, all photographers have ghosts. In a world where people are not perfect, engagements break off, and families go through a world of hurt, all that is left are the memories.
But what happens to these perfectly snapped and edited memories when things don't turn out happily ever after? You will pull them from your walls, delete them from social media and choose not to look at them. But as for us, the ones who walked right along side of you snapping these treasures, we become haunted.
Now this is not a post meant to tell anyone how to handle their relationships or to condemn divorce. This is a post explaining the dilemma us photographers face when sorting through images that have some good ol' fashioned baggage attached to them.
James 1: 2-3 says, "Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance." As I sat scrolling through these images I saw nothing but joy. Joy in the smiles and love in the faces that I captured. I felt no sadness for what was lost. Instead I choose to feel joy.
We currently live in a world that is constantly encroaching on our joy. We see the loss, the hurt and the violence of this in perfect world. And we must choose to feel joy.
So if you come across these images in your life, I challenge you to choose to see them for exactly what they are. Images of joy, laughter, happiness and goofiness. I have loved getting to know each couple and their story and continue to love them no matter what happens in their lives.
For each "ghost" I see, I also see triple the amount of newborn photos from the newly married couples. I get a call to book a wedding of the engaged couple that I shot only a month earlier. I get a text telling me that it's time for one year anniversary photos. Joy, I see so much Joy.
So as you continue to work through your week and sort through the muck and the "ghosts" that life throws your way, please remember to choose joy. Don't let this world steal your joy.