Portrait of a Photographer: Day 12

Jen is one of those pivotal people in my life.  I've watched her command wedding family photos as if she were King Kong...and she's 5'2 on a good day.  She's one of the best in the business, and if you are lucky enough to call her your friend, she's there for life.  

The month before I met Jen, I had finally decided to throw down the money to attend art school.  Brooks Institute to be exact, probably the most expensive and amazing photography program in the U.S.  Three weeks later, I made a pact with myself:  Don't go.  Wait.  See if you can apprentice and learn from photographers here for one year. Then, I promised myself, you are allowed to spend eighty grand if you want.  It was really the first time I had ever shown patience for a goal.  Then things started happening...

Jen and her husband Dave walked up to my tasting station.  I had just started my job as a wine rep and was working an event in the city.   They drank, we laughed, and somehow her business card came out.  "Your'e a photographer!!"  I yelped.  "If you ever need an assistant please call me!"  She did call, but it was to invite me to some kind of girl's night called SLC where they cooked healthy food and drank wine.  That week I showed up with a roller board filled with a dozen wines I had opened from my 'work week', and a bowl of fried chicken wraps.  "Shit!  I forgot it was supposed to be healthy!"  I was mortified at my mistake.  "What does SLC stand for anyway?" I asked. With a devilish smirk in her eye she answered, "Sensible Lifestyle Club...but it's kind of morphed over the years and now we like to call it Sexy Ladies Club!"  And with that, I was hooked.  

I started shooting with Jen later that month, and by the next season we were a magical duo shooting over 30 weddings together.  She always took time to teach me, let me experiment with my shots, and give me feedback.  She was patient and excited to help me grow.

Ultimately, I can say that Jen is the reason that I morphed from a girl who liked to take pictures, into a photographer.