Value of a Portrait

You never really know the value of a portrait until it’s all you have left.  Michele Celentano

Did you catch that?  How easy it is to take it for granted that we will have our loved ones with us forever.  How about you?  Do you think you will live forever? Tomorrow is promised to no one, and no matter our age, life passes by all too quickly.  Before you know it, your children will be grown and moving out of the house.  When I recently hung this family portrait in Sally's home, she commented on how quickly her boys are growing and she was so glad they had this family portrait.  How wonderful that her boys will have this in their home - it is a visual reminder of their family connection!  

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Not to sound morbid, but what memories will your children have of you when you have left this Earth?  Will they have treasured photos of you?  Will those photos include you with them in a photo?  I know so many women who literally hate to have their photo taken – me included!  I have to make myself get in the pictures, not because I don’t want to be photographed with my children or my husband, it’s just easier for me to take the photo and then I don’t have to see myself in it!  

At the recent photography conference I attended, one of my favorite photography speakers, Michele Celentano made the statement above about the value of a portrait.  I had heard her say this previously but hearing it again in person just reemphasized the truth of the statement.  Another speaker at the same conference commented about how much a nice sofa costs these days - $2000 to $3000 and more.  Then he asked, “If your house were to catch fire, would you try to carry that sofa outside with you?” Highly unlikely!  But you very likely might scoop up photo albums or carry that heirloom portrait of your family out with you.  My sister-in-law did that very thing one evening when there were grass fires near their home in the country and we were encouraged to get out of the house.  All she could think of (aside from everyone’s physical safety) was grabbing whatever photographs she could gather and carry out. 

How about you?  Do you have portraits of you and your family?  Do you know the value they will bring to your family members in the future?   Remember Michele’s saying - You never really know the value of a portrait until it’s all you have left.  Make sure you leave something valuable behind for your family!