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Fashion photographer and portrait artist Richard Avedon said this about his profession.

“Camera lies all the time. It’s all it does is lie, because when you choose this moment instead of this moment, when you… the moment you’ve made a choice, you’re lying about something larger. ‘Lying’ is an ugly word. I don’t mean lying. But any artist picks and chooses what they want to paint or write about or say. Photographers are the same.”

The new Richard Avedon app collects lots of his photographs together in one place where you can browse and ponder some of the most iconic photographs ever taken. He understood that an image is often misleading and that beauty is as much the wrinkles and imperfections as it was the slender frames and long legs. Click here to get the Avedon app – It’s free!

I cringed watching Lily Allen onstage at Glastonbury clad in, well, very little clothing while belting out the lyrics to her hit “The Fear” – “everything’s cool as long as I’m getting thinner“. Image is the most important thing, right? In my weaker moments I slip into agreement with the pop star with internal dialogues such as, “Work was terrible because I felt fat all day” or “best day ever – I fitted into a size 12 in Next – My new favourite shop”. It was time to take action, I read “True Beauty” by Carolyn Mahaney and Nicole Whitacre.

It opens with this quote from Jean Kilbourne, “The image (of beauty) has become even more tyrannical and more perfect than ever before . .  The pressure on girls which has existed for a long time is worse than ever because the ideal image now is so completely, inhumanly impossible to achieve

The authors write openly and honestly about their struggles with beauty, image and confidence. Thankfully the authors aren’t telling us to shun fashion and make up and focus on being beautiful on the inside but tackle the issues women face and attack it with some Bible truths and practical advice.

Do not be conformed. Let’s evaluate our taste for beauty and ask: “Who or what influences my sense of style?” and “In what ways does the ungodly culture shape my fashion preferences?” If necessary, let’s take deliberate steps to limit worldly influences on our taste for beauty; cancel the subscription, change the channel, spend less time browsing online, or walk past the store. Be transformed.

Whether you are downloading the Avedon app or reading the True Beauty hardback remember that you are God’s masterpiece. Eph 2.10.