Photogenic – To Be Or Not To Be

Beauty is subjective. Even in pictures? The idea behind being photogenic always fascinated me. Photogenic – I am just not talking about the looks of people. I am also referring to beautiful landscapes captured in photos. Photogenic means somebody/something that looks attractive in photographs. It is often a compliment. I have heard my friends, looking at my portfolio and going that I look “too good” in the pictures. That the camera “loves” me! I used to think “Er.. what does that mean, if I am photogenic, am I not pretty in real-life ??”


Then, I got to learn some very interesting facts about photography from a photographer-friend of mine. He has pursued photography for 17 years and enlightened me on this phenomenon of “photogenic”. He told me that there is no heavy meaning attached to photogenic. According to him, fact is- the subject in a picture has to be beautiful and scenic of a certain standard in real, to be looking good in the pictures, in the first place. He said that photos are just a way of capturing what is there already and photogenic means that it just translates over to your photos with the help of angles, makeup and light. And to add to it, a good photographer captures that what is not seen. Some of the award winning photographs have not merely captured people, but they have captured history, emotions, and overwhelming spirits that cannot be conveyed even with a thousand words.


Also, in person, people are bound to perceive you differently because then it’s not just the looks but also your personality, which adds in to your overall appearance. If you are really dumb, no matter how intelligent you try looking in your pictures, people would always consider you to be a bimbo. Similarly, if you have the personality of a girl-next-door, people would have a hard time accepting you as a “Diva”.


So, why this topic suddenly?  I recently watched Priyanka Chopra’s interview on that new talkshow, where she said that she came into the film industry because someone said she was photogenic.. Some people make a living off looking photogenic!  So, either you are photogenic or you are not… you cant become photogenic… its natural… photogenic simply means a good photographer’s camera cant find an bad angle on your face.

Of course there is the other side of the coin too. At times, somethings are so majestic and beautiful that even a photo cannot capture its true beauty. Although I have not seen it myself, I am told that pictures don’t even begin to describe how beautiful the Taj Mahal is.

Mum told me that Hrithik Roshan is a lot more good looking when you see him face-to-face, than on screen. And I was also told Priyanka Chopra is not half as pretty as she looks in pictures.

Of course, personal biases are involved, but i guess, why let go of a moment to put down somebody, right? It is human nature ;) but of course not all are like that. Sometimes people are simply stating a characteristic or quality a person possesses. Just because you have a quality does not mean you lack another. It is like when someone says you are beautiful, it does not mean you are dumb.

Sometimes taking a compliment as an insult is really unfair to the compliment giver.

Taking offense when none is intended is silly.

Taking offense when it is intended is just as silly.



2 thoughts on “Photogenic – To Be Or Not To Be

  1. Pingback: Valentine’s Day Haul | Spotlight

  2. Pingback: “I Can’t Make You Love Me” – Priyanka Chopra | Spotlight

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