I’ve gotten a ridiculous amount of compliments on the photo I’ve started using for my icon on Facebook, Twitter, etc. I’m not an ugly person, but I’m not a serious contender for Miss America either, so getting this much attention over my photo is kinda weird. You’d think I’d bathed in buttermilk and hired a stylist or something, but all I really did was hire my friend Kyle Hepp, who’s a professional photographer, to take my picture. So I thought I’d take this opportunity to thank her and pimp her services.
Kyle is a girl (with a boy’s name, yes, she knows) who I met through our blogs. She is a US expatriate who lives in Chile for most of the year with her husband, Seba, who she met there during school. When I heard she’d be in Nashville last summer, I decided to trek down I-65 to meet her. I hired her to do a photo shoot too for several reasons.
- I needed new promotional images of myself because everyone thought my hair was much shorter than it really was. My old photo pictured me the shortest haircut I’ve ever had, so every time I met an Internet-person or a friend who hadn’t seen me in person for awhile, they’d ask me when my hair had gotten so long. It was annoying.
- I was getting ready to leave Indiana and I wanted to give my mom some professional photos of myself as a gift
- I did not tell Kyle this at the time, but I wanted to get an author photo for my upcoming book, Chocolate & Vicodin. I thought this would be a lot of pressure though, so I kept quiet on that.
- Just because! Photo shoots can be fun :)
So, we met in downtown Nashville and roamed up and down the streets and along the waterfront scoping for good shots. I did not understand half of the technical things Kyle and Seba were doing with their portable flashes and other gadgets. Also, Kyle would speak in English and Seba would reply in Spanish, which was like listening to one half of a telephone conversation. I mostly just turned to the left and turned to the right and moved my shoulders a little this way and laid in the grass with a million chiggers. I got nine bug bites while taking the photo below, but it was totally worth it:
I got a great selection of photos to use and put six of them in a frame for my mom. I gave it to her the night before I drove off with the Budget truck leading the way. As I predicted, she started to cry when she unwrapped the gift. So there you go. Kyle Hepp: She’ll make your mommy cry. You can quote me on that.
I was very happy with the photos, particularly because I loved them despite not loving my weight these days. I’m not crying myself to sleep over my headache weight, but I would have preferred to be fifty pounds thinner while the photo lens was trained on me. The weight did not matter, though, because Kyle brought out my best features and made me look great. It can be unnerving being in front of a camera, but I was able to chill out and relax like we were just tourists who happened to hang out on window ledges.
So, thanks Kyle! You can visit Kyle’s site, Kyle Hepp Photography to see more of her portfolio.