Each experience throughout our lives becomes part of us, in some small way.
When we think of our lives changing us, we generally think of it as a metaphorical or emotional change.
But sometimes those changes are physical — for good or ill.
When Ms. H came to me for a boudoir session, I knew she had a number of self harm scars. I let her know that I could help her pose to hide them, but that I wouldn’t digitally erase them from her skin. (To honor the bodies that exist in the real world, I only touch out acne and similar temporary blemishes.)
Ms. H, however, not only was okay with her scars — she wanted to showcase them. They’re part of her life experience, and the physical manifestation of events that changed her inside as well.
In fact, she even incorporated the scars into the design of her sleeping cat tattoo.
Her other tattoos read “Survivor” and “Courageous.”