I’m generally not proud of my work (not being melancholy, I think it’s fine, some of it may even be okay-bordering-on-good, it’s just my standards are high), but there is one thing that makes me proud: 50+ people have used a photo I took as their profile picture on Facebook.
I HATE having my picture taken, and most people do. To be able to give a person a picture of them that they’re even mildly happy with, let alone happy enough to put as the avatar that represents them online, that feels like I’ve done a real service.
About half are people I know, half are people I don’t. I used to shoot professionally and I shot a lot of weddings, and photos I took there would pop up as a random guest’s profile photo.
Those are some of the only moments where I could unequivocally say “I did a good job!”
Much of my psyche is characterized by a sense that I’m not doing enough, contributing enough… but every time I’d get that notification (thanks, whatever nerd was working in the belly of the beast at Facebook) I’d be like:
I was reminded of this by a friend who let me take his picture when we met at the playground while my kids were running around. He said the obligatory “I hate pictures of me” but when he saw the result, he liked it.
He may not make it his profile photo, but that’s enough.