Paul B. Goode VISION: #6

Alida wrote about her experience as part of Paul's The Intimate Portrait project, and photographing the artist himself.

Beautiful women are invisible. They jump out at you. A beautiful woman stands out on the sidewalk waiting to cross the street, or in the museum admiring a sculpture, or in the corner by the window reading the paper. There’s something about her — a sophistication that sets her apart. You can’t miss here even if you tried. But the thing is, we never actually see her. We see the beautiful shell, but we are blocked by the beauty barrier. We’re so dazzled by the outside that we never make it inside.

Paul sees both. He manages to capture something other than a simple black and white portrait of a beautiful woman. He brings all of our unique and complicated brilliances to the surface, the bits that people are too subconcious about or are too afraid to let blossom. His camera sheds light on those that are not sure as to what to do with their internal beauty, and helps those to discover it within themselves.

How we see ourselves is often so different from how people perceive us. In a way, we will always be a mystery. And so, even after working with Paul for almost three years, I’m still surprised when I see pictures from our portrait session. I could have had an ordinary day, but in Paul’s pictures, he’ll bring out all different forces from within me — pure joy and contentment, deep pain and loss, spunky giggles and snorts, the weight of the world. It’s a never ending web of ‘Ah-ha’ moments.

To turn the lens onto the artist himself was a gift and a responsiblity. He too needed to see, to find, to feel, and to appreciate what makes him spectacular and unique. I felt like I owed it to Paul to see for himself what he has given to so many men and women — the freedom to express without apology.
— Alida Rose Delaney