Photographers all over the world are falling in love with Jesh De Rox, his genuine, joyful spirit and his new approach to photography. One week ago I had no idea that I would soon be one of them, in fact I had never viewed his work or heard of the interaction style that is behind the raw emotion that so clearly stands out in his beautiful images. The name for this revolutionary new style is Beloved, and once you understand the meaning of it fully you will never want to have a traditional photo shoot again. Going forward in my business this style will be evident in my work, and I’m truly excited to see the improvements in my photography that I know it will bring.
So what exactly does it mean? In Jesh’s own words Beloved “blends the visual aesthetics of portraiture with the authenticity of photo journalism.” Others have described it as a “feel good photographic adventure … an experience of the heart that gives truth a voice and relationships strength.”
In simpler terms I would say that it removes the posed 1-2-3 smile, and similar constructed elements from photo sessions and replaces them with genuine play, exploration and real expressions. Through a series of invites and questions the couple or family interact with each other in ways that bring out their true personality and love for one another. At the start of the session playful games are used to get everyone comfortable and laughing. Later, a series of soulful invites are used to bring out the most beautiful, individual aspects of their personalities. The images produced as a result of these scenarios are profound and real. They evoke true emotion in the viewer and speak directly to our hearts.
The most important part in all of this is the way it impacts the people who are standing in front of the lens. The Beloved approach allows couples to fall in love all over again. The photographer doesn’t need to hear what you share, it can be as private as you wish. Mostly the more meaningful interactions revolve around gentle touch and quiet whispers between the two of you. You will be surprised at how much you can learn about each other. It is no doubt a rekindling experience and a rediscovery of your loved one. So often after years of marriage we forget to communicate our feelings for each other. Sometimes we may even take those close to us for granted. Beloved is about removing the distance that builds between people and remembering what should never be forgotten. It is about the joy and love in our hearts that we are often too busy to feel and express.
Attending Jesh De Rox’s “Chemistry of Connection” workshop was a life-changing experience for me, to say it blew my mind would be an understatement. I will forever view photography and the way I interact with clients differently. Most importantly it brought everything I’m learning on my personal journey about wholehearted and authentic living into my photography world. For quite some time I have felt uninspired and even a six month break from my business didn’t bring back my passion for photography. I was beginning to feel that it was time to put the camera away and rethink my career options, at least for some time. I cannot even begin to explain the gratitude I feel at having my spark back. It is like a loved one has been brought back to life. During the workshop my husband and I had the chance to experience a Beloved session first hand with Jesh and a group of photographers. I could never have imagined that a few invites to reflect on memories, dreams for the future and the love we share would bring out such strong emotions in us that even tears were captured. It is an experience that requires trust, but the thing to remember is that this trust is built slowly but surely as you work your way from the light and funny invites to the more meaningful ones that connect you with your loved one on a deeper level. It is a gradual exploration that will only ever go as far as you are comfortable with.
This workshop marks a new journey for me. One that I am extremely passionate about. My business will be taking on a new direction with a greater focus on couples and family photography (I will also continue to do newborns). I want to help tell your stories and capture the soul and heart of who you are, at any stage of your life.
Yesterday I had the chance to put into practice everything I have learnt about Beloved this past week. It was amazing to see how effortlessly the stage was set for beautiful, genuine interactions between this gorgeous couple. The invites allowed me to step back and simply capture their love-story as it unfolded right in front of me. I will be blogging their full shoot in a few days.