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  • Writer's pictureBetty Girardeau

Daring to Be Different

Updated: Nov 1, 2020

Isn't it wonderful that we aren't all alike? If you have more than one child, you know that even though they come from the same basic gene pool and were raised more or less identically, each of them is very different from their sibling(s). We know that especially in our adolescence, peer pressure to conform to the group becomes an issue in growing up. Marketing practices are based on how to get the most people to want to buy a certain thing or style. Conformity in general often seems to be what is rewarded rather than being a non-conformist. From the standpoint of society's need to embrace harmony and order rather than chaos, it might seem appropriate to encourage people to blend in. But is it? Just look at the image I selected for today. Cover up that lone red leaf, and tell me if you really think the picture is better or stronger without it? I would be surprised if you do. As a photographer I am attracted to things that are different, that don't seem to conform because they are usually the things that are more interesting. They are the cherry that has been added to the ice cream sundae. We are taught from our earliest days that it is better to conform, that to do so makes our lives and the lives of those with whom we interact to be better and happier, less chaotic. But I think it is equally important to dare to be different, to not adopt crowd mentality. I just looked up the phrase "Dare to be different," and could not agree more with the way I found it described: "The way to change the world, or at least your world, is to dare to be different. When you dare to be different, you step out of the mold, and you make space for your creative twists. When you dare to be different, sometimes you stand alone. But alone is where your unique creative contribution can thrive." I also believe that you are never too old to do this, too. Today's picture proves that, don't you think?

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