Real Beauty: Healing Through Photography

Tree climbing, so evocative of childhood.

Tree climbing, so evocative of childhood.

When I set out on the journey that has become my career, I did not anticipate healing through photography.

I started photography when I was 250 pounds and depressed that my life had no direction. I was in Germany visiting my parents. My dad let me use his digital camera and I was hooked. I sought to find beauty in my world which started with butterflies and German fountains. Then I turned my lens onto myself.

I taught myself posing and lighting by doing hundreds of shots with the self-timer.

I found that I could make myself look more like I did in the mirror and less like the snapshots I hated. That was when I discovered cameras lie.

After I moved back to the states I sought clients who could benefit from seeing a photo of themselves that they loved.

Because there’s such a need for self-love, it quickly morphed into an unexpected career.

But healing through photography isn’t only for the client. Along the way of helping heal so many women, I healed myself. I lost 90 pounds. I had a beautiful baby. I had post-partum depression. I was diagnosed with Lyme disease. I got divorced.

And through it all, photography has healed me. I got to a place of selflessness to photograph my subjects. It’s not about me, it’s about capturing the essence of a person.

This past weekend I was visiting friends from my teenage days in Germany. The kiddos came over for a family dinner and I felt an intense need to photograph them. I needed to capture them and create art. I needed my therapy. They weren’t dressed up. It was completely impromptu. But these are some of my favorite photographs.

Healing through photography

Grandmother and Granddaughter!

Healing through photography

Monkey in a tree! This is the kids’ favorite photo.

Healing through photography

Pensive, but so beautiful.

Healing through photography

I let kids pose themselves. This is such an amazing and dynamic shot.

Healing through photography

Aren’t they gorgeous?

Healing through photography

Silly kiddos.



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Iman is a photographer who, through her unique process of coaching and photography, can show a woman what other people see when they look at her. She is passionate about teaching other photographers how to live and be a professional and making change in the world. She dreams of changing the way women look at their bodies and how the world defines beauty. She also thinks being an instructor on CreativeLIVE would be incredible. Iman battles Lyme disease and shares her unique view of dreaming while fighting for her health. Her post day is Wednesday. info@imanwoods.com Iman Woods If you aren't sure how to comment on this story, click here.

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