John DeMato - NYC Branded Lifestyle Portrait Photographer

NYC Branded Lifestyle Photographer - Blog

NYC Branded Lifestyle Portrait Photography Blog | Hi, I'm John DeMato, and I collaborate with thought leaders to create powerful, purposeful and authentic images. This is my blog where I talk all about the magic behind the portraits we create.

"I love me when_____."


There's many ways to build positive, emotional capital before your photo session.


This particular practice has provided me some of my own emotional capital, so, I want to share it with you, :)


For many people, it’s a weird and uncomfortable experience to sit in front of a camera and “be themselves.”

It not only feels invasive, but, it’s also as if the photographer is holding up a mirror directly in front of them and showing off all of the hangs-ups that they feel about their appearances.  

I understand that feeling completely and was in that emotional space for the vast majority of my life.

But, as a thought leader charged with helping their followers get from where they are to where they want to be in their businesses and lives, it’s essential that they move past their own mental hurdles regarding their appearances and produce images that can be used as powerful tools for change through sharing their life-changing, thought leadership in these posts.

That’s why one of the principals that I stress before I work with my clients is to have them build a wealth of positive, emotional capital before their sessions in order to combat this negative, mind chatter and focuses them on the true value of their branded lifestyle portrait session.

So, how can you create this positive, emotional capital?

Well, the field of positive psychology teaches us that there are many avenues with which to leverage for this, but, in this article, I want to focus on one, simple exercise that I’ve personally found to be quite helpful in this area.

It’s a quick, writing exercise that I find to be very helpful with creating a flow of positive, emotional capital.

Answer this question in as many ways as you can in 60 seconds:

I love me when ________________.

I know, right? Seems like a flimsy exercise that won’t make a dent in your anxiety before your session, right?

Truth be told, when my positive psychology instructor introduced this activity in class, I thought this was a bunch of lame, woo-woo hosreshit.

I felt like it was fortune cookie wisdom that tasted great while doing it, and then, that satiation would leave once the activity was over.

Ultimately, I allowed myself the space to give it a chance and put my snap judgement to the side for a moment, and I committed to completing the exercise!

I’m glad I did because, guess what? It was an awesome experience to see this list staring back at me, reminding me how I feel when I am at my best.  

I was pumped up afterwards, no doubt about it.

How are you at your best?  How do you feel when you love the activities in which you participate? Do you love yourself when you are serving others? Teaching a lesson? Helping followers discover their ways of getting unstuck?

Give yourself a full minute to brainstorm answers that finish this statement and see how you feel afterwards.

I invite you to post your “I love me when ________” statements on post-it notes and place them throughout your home in the week or so leading up to your session as subtle reminder of how you feel at your best.

PS - This article was adapted from an article I published entitled, I’m Not Photogenic: How To Get Your Mind Right For Your Next Portrait Session.

I’m Not Photogenic outlines several applied positive psychology interventions and principles designed for the reader to amass a wealth of positive, emotional capital before their next session in order to ease their nerves to present themselves powerfully, purposefully and authentically in front of the camera.

Give it a read and let me know what you think!

Also, if you are looking for a photographer who can help guide you past your emotional landmines in order to capture a truly authentic, content portfolio full of portraits and other image content, I know just the guy for you, :)

Schedule a call with me in order to see if we’re a good fit to work together!


PS - For those of you who aren’t in the know, I mail out these blogs 3x a week, and lemme tell you, they’re a real party, so, if you’d like to get in on this, sign up for it here and I’ll throw in a free gift for you...because I care, :)