The Art of Aura Reading—Plus, What to Expect

A conceptual artist and a psychic medium weigh in on the New-Agey practice.

aura reading

Most of us are aware that the physical form is composed of stardust and that our bodies emanate energy. Those who are able to measure or read our human energy field with or without the use of a photograph refer to it as an aura—a luminous and colored emanation surrounding the physical body of a person. Curious to learn more, we chatted with two experts on the subject, conceptual artist and photographer Christina Lonsdale from Radiant Human, and psychic medium and celebrity aura reader Mystic Michaela, about their personal approach to aura reading, their reason behind this practice, and the different meanings and outcomes of auras.

Christina Lonsdale, Conceptual Artist

aura reading

Photo: Natalia Mantalini

What is aura photography, and how does it work?

"Aura photography is completely different from a clairvoyant seeing an aura. To understand the difference, it's important to understand this camera, the Auracam 6000, which uses an algorithm to match the wavelength of the energy from your hands to the wavelength of a color, to then distribute it on top of the photograph of yourself. Traditionally, the aura camera has been used in psychic fairs and crystal shops as a way to enhance a healing service. My interest in it is different, though, in the sense that I don't identify as a healer, but instead as an artist. I'm interested in portraiture and conceptualizing energy in new media language: the selfie. Because of this, my photographs look very different compared to traditional aura photographs, as you can see the face and expression of the subject more clearly."

What led you to become an aura reader?

"I consider myself a conceptual artist rather than an aura reader—I'm inspired by the dichotomy between the physical body and the energetic body. So much of our interaction is through visual platforms online that I wanted to find a way to visualize energy and identity so there could be a more genuine representation of who we are as humans in the digital age."

How do you read a person's photographed aura?

"Over the course of six years, I have taken over 45,000 aura photographs and found incredible consistencies with how people have identified with the colors they create with their energy. For example, most people that photograph with red are going through some type of change in their life. I've compiled all my findings in my book titled Radiant Human: Discovering the Connection Between Color, Identity and Energy. I'm so excited to announce that this is the most comprehensive aura photo book in existence so far!"

Is there a color that's usually more prevalent than others?

"I have seen a lot of people photograph with purple or combinations with purple, but I think that's the type of personality that seeks these things out. Purple energy is known for being unconventional and unique—which aura photography definitely is. There's a tendency for people to think there's a hierarchy to the colors in the aura photograph, but I can assure you, every color gets a mixed bag."

Mystic Michaela, Psychic Medium

aura reading

Photo: Courtesy of Mystic Michaela

What is an aura reading?

"An aura reading is the process by which I begin to tap into a person's energy field. We each have a purpose in our lifetimes, and my personal path with aura readings is about revealing one's authentic motives and purposes. The aura colors are a tool the Spirit has given me in which to do this. When I do an aura reading, one's soul contract purpose is revealed along with the chords which hold one back from fulfilling that purpose. Seeing what the issues are in one's energy allows them to be more energetically responsible, make better and more authentic choices, and move past walls and blockages they have been conditioned to live with."

What is the purpose of aura reading?

"The main purpose of an aura reading is to embrace who you authentically are. Auras are an energy signature around each person. They are all individual, but there are five main aura colors. Most people have a combination of two. Understanding your aura can help you live life more authentically in every facet of life—career, relationship to self, money, working out, motivation, and all relationships. They are like personality types."

What led you to become an aura reader?

"I come from a psychic family, so growing up talking about the 'other side' was not unusual to me. For as long as I can remember, I could see colors around people. It's just another sense for me, like smelling or seeing."

How do you read a person's aura?

"When I do an aura reading personally, I become the conduit for spirit messages. Because I can see auras without a camera, I don't usually look at aura photos. I also teach people that even if you can't 'see' an aura, you can definitely feel it! Each color has its own vibration. Reds are direct, purples are creative, blues are very compassionate, etc. When getting an aura photo, the most common issue I see is that people aren't clearing their energy before having the photo done. What we don't realize is many of us have 'empath auras' or auras which hold others' energies. We walk through our lives holding others' energies and thinking we are making choices for ourselves, when actually it's because of the inauthentic aura colors we pick up."

Is there a color that's usually more prevalent than others?

"I see all colors equally out and about in my everyday life. It depends where you go and the concentration of aura colors will be more apparent. In hospitals, nurses tend to be yellow and blue, doctors tend to be green. Go to a police or fire station, and you'll see a lot of reds! Movie stars and singers tend to be purple. I say all colors are great colors as long as they are your own. I see a lot of unhappiness comes from wearing aura colors which are not ours but which we feel we have to wear to survive."

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