The Soul*Full Tribe is a weekly series with inspiring life leaders
who have been invited to share their heart felt experience and soul.
Storytelling with Images
Photography is many things to many people. To me, it is a way to tell stories. I love stories. All kinds. Especially those that tell about the uniqueness of courageous women I meet along the way. They can be real flesh and blood women or those within the pages of a book or within the magic of the movie screen. Their stories are fascinating to me.
Your story matters. It’s powerful. Who you are and the events and people in your life, past and present, that shaped you into who you are today mean much. I believe sharing it with others makes the world a better place.
Did you know that you can tell your own story through images? You don’t have to be a professional photographer to do so. I’ve always said that photography technique can be taught, but having the eye to see cannot be. That is unique to each of us. What we see is our own vision and it is special. What you choose to photograph says a lot about who you are and what you believe. And it matters. I encourage you to start sharing your vision with the world today.
Here are some examples of how you might do so.
The Story of Rosie the Riveter and Amelia Earhart
I’m so inspired by stories of courageous women in our past history. Rosie the Riveter and Amelia Earhart are two such women. Both stepped up at a time when their industries were dominated by men and did the work necessary to follow their dreams. This photo shoot was inspired by them. I shot this as stock photography for possible future book covers. What is your dream? I encourage you to go follow it. Chase it for all you’re worth.
This shoot was inspired by the many women, past and present, who have dedicated their lives to supporting their loved ones at home by using their skills of baking and of nurturing others. It’s a selfless act that reaps benefits into the lives of those who are on the receiving end. I still remember my mom’s awesome oatmeal raisin cookies. Today my primary love language is having someone cook for me. There is so much love and time that goes into that and I have such respect for those who provide that gift to others.
I love the story this image shows. Countless moms have read stories to their children, over and over again, until they could recite them by heart. But the love that is contained within those special bonding moments is something that lasts forever. Some of my most precious memories with my own daughter, who is now 18, was when I would read out loud to her, both when she was a toddler in her footie pajamas before bedtime and when I homeschooled her for a bit during her late elementary and middle school years. There’s something about sharing a story with others that is magical. To be able to talk about the characters as if they were friends opens up a whole world of possibilities and hope. Sharing stories makes it seems as if anything is possible.
The Story of Our Tribes
Capturing a story with images doesn’t have to be professional. The essence of the story can be caught even with an iPhone camera. This shot was taken with my iPhone camera after a typical kickboxing class with my tribe (friends developed over many months of sweating together and overcoming tough workouts). We were laughing so hard and I was so tired that the image is actually blurry which is generally a no no in the professional photography world. But the emotion caught in this image and the realization that I have a tribe of like-minded souls was a revelation to me. It’s often in the everyday moments that our true story is told.
The Story of Family
Sometimes the most powerful images come from those I make when I’m not even trying. Take this one, for instance. I was attending my husband’s parents’ 50th wedding anniversary last summer and took this quick shot of them together in front of the church doors. What was to me at the time something that wasn’t my best work turned out to be my most important work. Not much more than 6 months later, this image was used on the funeral bulletin for both of them. They had died within a week of each other. Totally humbled and broke me and reminded me how very important it is to tell my stories and those of others I encounter along the way. Even though I knew my husband’s dad was ill at the time, we had no idea his mom was, too. By Thanksgiving, we found out she had cancer and before we could even grieve that, within a month’s time, she was in Heaven with her Savior. Her story is a testament to me of living faithfully to the dream you have been called. You can read more of it here
Go Tell Your Story
So you see, you never know what kind of story you’ll capture when you first set out to photograph your world, but you must shoot, because your story is so very important. Go tell it today.
Lois Olson is photographer and owner of The Sparrow Stand, an Omaha-based boutique photo studio that tells stories by mixing whimsy with stylized imagery. Lois’ specialty is conceptual, storytelling photo shoots. She is often inspired by old Hollywood movies, classic books, and vintage TV shows. You can find Lois on her blog , follow her on Twitter , and ‘like’ her on Facebook. She’d love to get to know you and your story. Come stop by and share it.