I Listen

I want to know how you guys met.  I want to know why you decided to go on your first date.  Where did you go?  On a scale from 1-awkward, how bad was it?  

I want to know how your friendship grew into something more than that.  When did you realize it was happening?

I want to know what you admire about your significant other.  I want to know your senses of humor.

I love getting to know people.  I love listening to their stories.  As a photographer, it is my absolute strongest attribute.  I am a listener.  I ask questions and then listen intently to your answer because it is my job to know you.  The better I know you, the better my work can be, and, ultimately, the better I can tell your story.

But to me, listening isn't just verbal.  It's so much more than that.  It's watching you interact and joke around with one another.  It's noting which, if either of you, takes charge in a conversation.  It's as simple as seeing how you walk with each other during our engagement session.  Do you hold hands?  Does one make the other laugh constantly?

The thing I hear the most about my work is, "omg! These pictures look just LIKE you guys!" And you know what?  Hearing that is music to my ears.  Obviously the pictures look like you--the people in the photographs ARE you; but when people say that about photographs I have snapped, I know they mean I have captured the essence of my clients.  And that, my friends, is authentic storytelling through photographs.  

But before I can tell your story, I take the time to listen to it first.

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Follow Shelly on Instagram @shellyshimonphotography