The fear of being rejected and other demons
As I already mentioned, I love portrait photography. That means photographing people. People usually don’t like being photographed by complete strangers. “What are you going to do with the photo?” one might ask.
So it’s common sense to ask someone before taking their photo, right?
As a part of my 30 days of photography challenge, I decided that I want more portrait photos and less other types of photos.
That means asking complete strangers if I could take their photo. Which sounded good in my head, but turned out it was terrifying.
After completely failing for a few days, I decided that today I would ask 10 complete strangers if I could take a photo of them, for my Instagram page.
Until I just couldn’t. My mind said “Yes, let’s do it” and my body said “Nope, no way!” The best I could do is ask one lovely lady that was having lunch at Selina, where I was having lunch as well.
“Alright, I can do this” I said, and I went and asked her if I could take a photo of her.
Her name is Julissa, she lives in Lisbon and comes occasionally to Selina to have lunch and get some work done. I’ve got a magnificent shot for the picture of today, and I left happy and accomplished.
“Now that wasn’t so hard, just need to ask 9 more people” I thought. “That guy looks busy”, “That one looks like he’s in a hurry”, and so on I went for the rest of the day when I admitted defeat.
Me, who I never ever thought about being afraid of being rejected, I am completely and actively avoiding asking people if I can take a photo of them.
A short while after, Olivia told me that it might not be fear of being rejected, but instead just fear of approaching strangers. And, the more I think about it, the more I realize she’s right. I have absolutely no problem being rejected by someone that I already know. My problem here was actually talking to complete strangers and asking them something.
Eureka! Now that I know what my challenge actually is about, I can start do something about it. There is and endless source of online lore about this, but I think the best thing to do is… well… practice.
In the meantime, thank you @jujucinco for being my photo of the day today!