Just Me

Last week I had the extreme pleasure of stepping in front of Sharon Elizabeth’s lens! I had a mentoring session with this wonderful woman more than a year ago and should have done my head shot portion around that time too! However, I kept beating myself up because I had gained weight and kept pushing it off. Welp, after months and months of postponing AND shedding a few pounds, I got over myself and got in front of the camera.

It was such a fun experience!!! I got all dolled up and got to see myself in a way I never have before. When I first looked into the mirror after getting my makeup done, I didn’t recognize myself. I felt like an imposter. Who was I to look like this? And who on earth was going to take me seriously. Me, the girl who always has her hair in bun and barely wears any makeup was looking less than herself.

But after talking with Sharon, my tune changed. The reason why I ever did a mentoring session with her in the first place is because I admire her. She’s not like so many other people in this industry. She’s different. She’s real and genuine and unapologetic. And I love and respect that so much! She’s not sorry for who she is and doesn’t try to hide it. She’s not trying to live anyone else’s life, but embrace her own life that God gave her. And THAT is why I love her! She’s awesome and such a beautiful and wonderful person to learn from!

What I learned from my time with Sharon is that I can be many things, but no one else can be me. I can embrace the part of myself who loves to dress up and I can also be that girl who likes to veg out in her yoga pants and messy bun. I can be the girl who hates scary movies, but is still obsessed with The Walking Dead. I can also be the person who is trying to get in shape and goes on a jog, only so she can have Mexican food for dinner. I don’t have to be anyone else. I just need to be me and stop being sorry about it.

I’m not married, but I have a boyfriend whom I love. I have two parents who love me, but they’re not married and it’s okay. I don’t have the perfect Pinterest life (but really, who does?). My thighs rub together when I walk. I cry at sappy Hallmark commercials. I make stupid jokes and laugh at everything. I’m completely awkward, but totally lovable. I’m just me. I need to stop feeling bad about those things and embrace it. God gave me this life for a reason and I need to use it to honor Him. I don’t need to constantly worry about making my Instagram feed look pretty.

I need to focus on who I am and how I can serve others. I’m the person who will go to the moon and back to make sure my clients feel loved. And I believe that all those crazy things that make me who I am are also what help me be the best person I can be with my clients.

Soooooo…. in the spirit of being real, here are some funny and honest moments that led to me feeling like a mermaid in the last picture! 😉

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This is my trying to put on this gorgeous dress by myself. Those who know me, know I’m a little too well-endowed and that zippers have never been my friend. Well, I tried sliding this dress on over my head and I got stuck. It wasn’t just your normal “oh, I’m stuck” moment, it was a “stuck-for-15-minutes-had-to-call-for-help” situation.

11694382_10204501425686805_269066735_nHere’s my Mulan moment haha. As I was taking my makeup off from the session and started singing “Reflection.” haha. Because it’s totally normal to burst into a musical right before bed.

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And here is the magic that Sharon created. I have never felt more like a mermaid than I have in this pic!!! EEEE!!! I’ll try and keep the rest of the head shots under wraps for now. By now, most of you know that I’m in the process of refining my brand. These head shots will be perfect for my new website!!! 🙂

P.S. Did you know I used to hate that my first name was Virginia?! I always got so mad that my sisters all had really cool first names and I got stuck with being named after the state. Yay for me. But in the spirit of embracing who I am, I’m starting to even like my first name and can’t wait for the brand refresh.

Until then! This will have to do! 🙂

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If you’ve ever felt like you’re not enough, STOP! You are wonderful and amazing and created for a purpose! We’re all different and that is worth celebrating! Build up those around you and celebrate your uniqueness. Stop trying to be like everyone else. You’re love just the way you are! 🙂

3 Comments

  • Girl, I’m glad you’re embracing who you are, because I LOVE every bit of it!!

  • HAHAHAHAHA I shouldn’t laugh…but I can. And I did. I TOTALLY 110% get this! I’ve been there – in fact, trying on dresses is always fun for me. I try to make sure at least someone else is there make sure I don’t get stuck hahaha.

    And, you’re such a sweet soul and I adore you! Plus, you’re super fun to work with 🙂 🙂

  • It is okay! Please don’t change because we love you the way that you are!
    I did not know that you hate scary movies too…

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I’M  Ashley

a Richmond, Virginia WEDDING & PORTRAIT Photographer

I’m Virginia Ashley, but my friends just call me Ashley! I’m a wedding photographer based in Richmond, Virginia. Even though I live in RVA, I travel all over for photography, which is awesome because I LOVE to travel! I’ve been as far as California and have my passport burning a hole in my pocket!

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