Photo Shoot

Dina Koutas Poch, headshot

I was advised that I needed a new head shot. The last public image of me is from my book cover, seven years ago.

A lot changes in seven years, apparently.

I knew just the right person to ask for this task⎯my husband. He was the last person to snap my public image, and, if I am anything in life, it’s loyal.

I mean, he did study photography in college. We own a collection of BlindSpot publications. He taught me about Gregory Crewdson and Nan Goldin. When we first moved in together fifteen years ago, I contributed a charcoal drawing of Jimi Hendrix. He plunked down a coffee table book by photographer, Hiroshi Sugimoto.

But for a brief, flittering moment, it dawned on me that my husband is an artist who tells emotional stories with his camera. Maybe he was a piss-poor choice to freshen-up my LinkedIn profile? Maybe the lady at CVS who takes passport photos understands more what I am looking for.

Friday was the day I picked for said “photo shoot.” I selected my most bland top. My hair was styled, i.e. blow-dried, followed by a short wrestling stint with a curling iron. Make-up was applied. The sun peeked through the windows. Perfect.

After about forty or so photos, amid four different locations throughout my house, and one lingering comment that “I pose funny just before a frame is snapped”, my head shots were done. I eagerly uploaded my images. Voila!

So many eye wrinkles! Is that red dot on my forehead just that noticeable? Why do I tilt my head like I am a five-year-old nestling a kitten? It wasn’t a good idea to snack while taking photos. A few images forever document something green stuck in my back teeth.

Sigh. I said: “I guess I am just not that attractive anymore. But that’s okay. Thanks for taking the photos for me.”

While I accepted my pictorial fate, my husband looked crestfallen: “I think you are pretty. I can use a lens that’s more flattering. I didn’t know you wanted that.”


Excuse me?

A more flattering lens is available? And was not selected!?

Did my husband forget everything he knows about women? So, with one lens change later (and apparently there is still another kind of lens that is even MORE flattering but we don’t own it), I have a new profile picture. And hopefully this one is good for at least another seven years.

Here are two other portraits that I thought about today: one is drawn by me; and the other, is of Bea Arthur, (actress from Golden Girls) by John Currin.  


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