Despite the title this is no rose-tinted glasses post today, just my honest thoughts on imperfection. My wife received a beautiful boutique of roses the other day and I thought, ‘wouldn’t it be nice to take a photo of them before they fade’
However, instantly I noticed all the imperfections that my glancing gaze had not seen upon viewing the photo close up in Photoshop. They were still lovely but not perfect. I could have fixed them via the editing program, but I didn’t fancy doing that much work. Secondly I realised I would be just covering up the reality of life.
When I was a studio photographer hiding reality was something I had no problem doing. People wanted, indeed begged to look better than they really were, but now I take photos simply for pleasure and I would rather enhance reality than spend hours cover over all it’s perceived ‘blemishes’.
The reality of these roses recalled the disconnect between the idea of what I think I look like and the truth that is revealed every time I look in the bathroom mirror. Reality is cruel and depressing to those that are captivated by beauty, even if it’s something we personally don’t possess.
Mirrors and photos are best avoided, as they often hammer home the massive gap between how we feel and look. I may feel like a young fresh flower but in truth I’m a Wizened Old Oak tree.
Alas, there is not enough time or money in the world to carve, stretch, bulge and shrink me into the person I wish to be. Yes I may be ‘valid’ (a node to my woke friends) and the decades may have been kind to my face, however I don’t look anything like the person I imagine. In the right light, on my best day when you are drunk enough I may look almost like that person I have in my head, but that sadly isn’t really me and it’s not enough. Like the roses, I look ‘ok’ from a long (very long) distance but close up I am going in the wobbly knobbly vegetable pile at the supermarket.
So, what can we do? Little. We must Embrace our ‘Imperfections’ or go mad focusing on them, trying to fix them. This is much easier said than done, in fact in the western world it’s not done at all. A billion-pound cosmetic industry is testament to that fact. However, as someone whose work overlapped with the glamour industry from time to time, I know the truth ‘beautiful people’ seldom are, those that are lucky enough to possess natural beauty rarely place any value on it.
Spirituality is meant to fix our need for physical perfection. However, having also been around spiritual people who aren’t supposed to care about their looks, alas most do. Especially for posters and book covers, in fact they care more than some models and definitely more than most of us would care to think.
So what pearls of wisdom do I have to tell you? Honestly not much. Who we are is who we are. How others see us is completely different to how we see ourselves. Even how we think we look often differs greatly from how we actually look. The truth is ultimately our looks will fade. We should be concentrating on internal makeovers of our mind and let time take down the façade. Maybe one day our looks won’t matter, however no matter how many positive memes are posted that time is not now.
I will never lie to you; I don’t do BS. This stuff is hard, as is much of life. Fading looks can be depressing and often not for the reasons you think. When you get to my age (53) you think you would be over it, but much like we doubt our own mortality, many of us are reluctant to face the facts that we are getting old and in this lifetime we won’t ever get to look as we would have wished. In truth that said it seldom fully stops the ego from praying the toad will finally one day awaken a princess lol.