The Storyteller

One of the first things people always want to know about me is where I am from. I mean no one has ever looked at my name (Stephanie Wijesinghe), and thinks Cali born GA girl! This question is always free amusement for me...evil sounding I know...but I love to let people guess before I say anything :) Most people immediately say Indian...which of course is wrong...but let's visit some of my favorite guesses shall we? Mexico, Cajun...didn't know that was a country, Hawaiian...once again, not a country, and then my person favorite...the woman on the beach who thought my tan was fake, and insisted I just didn't want to tell her how I got my year round tan :) The free entertainment in all this continues when I finally answer, and say Sri Lanka...Then people just have this blank look on their face like "she totally just made that country up! " But for all those who don't know...Sri Lanka IS a REAL country, and it's a tiny island below India.

So big deal...you are from Sri Lanka...who cares?? Well,  here's my point...ALL of us come from all over the place. Fortunately for me, I grew up in a family that was very concerned about making sure us kids were exposed to all different cultures, and they made it a point to encourage us to learn about about the world around us, and the world outside of where we grew up! Looking back, I am so thankful for this!  As a photographer I love meeting people from all over the world! It never ceases to amaze me the stories my clients and I end up sharing :)  So as much as my job may be about carrying around a camera and composing pictures, it is also about telling people's stories.  The truth is that telling people where I am from...doesn't tell them my story. But, it does open a door into making people feel more comfortable with me, and by default more comfortable with me taking their pictures! It allows me to become more than just a name in some Google search or one of a million other photographers out there!

That being said, today, I'm sharing a few pictures from my weekend session in Piedmont park, and share a small part of Noemi's story :)

Noemi was born in NY. Brooklyn to be exact! She would want me to make sure that I added that! :) She loves looking good, anything with bling, and she hasn't quite mastered the art of walking in high heels! LOL! But she was a real trooper and almost made it her entire session without changing her shoes!

She is a very proud Latina and Domicana, who is about to have her quinceañera! For those of you that don't know what that is...it's very similar to sweet 16 parties that we have in American culture. It is about celebrating a girl's transition to being a woman!

It was really fun to watch her going from being just another girl in the park getting their picture taken, to the princess that made everyone stop and want their picture taken with her :)

Read. Share. Enjoy! :)