Oh what a day. I’m sitting here at my desk, with a thousand images, words, and ideas running through my mind. Today I had the opportunity to hear and glean knowledge from some very talented, very successful, and very genuine photographers. I attended Image Quest at the River Rock Casino in Richmond.
Okay, so the day didn’t exactly start as amazing as it turned out. While I couldn’t help but smile, by myself, in my car as I drove home, I was cursing as I drove in. Maybe that’s too harsh a word. Regardless, the stop and go traffic + too much coffee beforehand + not really knowing where I was going + rushing in with just one minute to spare…well. You get the picture. I also didn’t know what to expect. I just hoped that walking into a room full of other photographers – presumably experienced, established, and therefore perhaps intimidating photographers – I’d get to make one friend out of the day. Make one connection.
With that being said, let’s skip to my favorite part of the day. Not that the morning’s session with Blue Olive Photography wasn’t great in and of itself. First of all, I didn’t have to eat lunch alone with my nose in my book :) I met three great girls – Heidi, Emily, and Rose – who I got to connect with over sushi. And then there was the reason I heard of and came to Image Quest: Jasmine Star. If you don’t know who she is, check her out. Please. I’ve been following her blog for quite some time and through it, Jasmine continually offers inspiration and incredible advice. Seriously, I saw she was coming and I didn’t care what she would be speaking on, I knew I had to be there. I was hoping for the chance to just meet her. And thank her. Imagine my delight and starstruckness(?) when I not only got to do that, but also join her and her hubby/business partner JD for lunch! Well, their lunch, my dessert. Rose and I randomly ran into them and another lady, Philomena, from the convention and so there we were, the five of us sitting around the table, chatting about this and that.
Jasmine and JD are two of the warmest, most genuine people I’ve had the pleasure of meeting. The Jasmine you get to know online, is the Jasmine you meet in person. She’s a firm believer in and encourager of keeping it real. “Don’t fake the funk.” She only picked up a digital camera in 2006 and last year she was voted top 10 wedding photographer in the world. If that doesn’t scream inspiration, especially after hearing her speak this afternoon, I don’t know what does. Oh and you know what? Through talking with her, I learned that she also worked at a church while she was in the process of starting her photography business. Just like me :)
All in all, this day re-energized my love of photography and got me pumped to keep moving forward – namely, by creating a website and brand I can be proud of, something that reflects me and my voice. Plus, I got to make several connections, and look forward to what will come of them!
NOW, if you actually read til the end of this post, here are a few photos I was lucky enough to get:
When Jasmine decided to pursue wedding photography, JD told her “I’d rather see you fail at something you love than see you succeed at something you don’t.” Now there’s love & support for ya. And great words to live by. What a team :)
Thank you, Jasmine. Here’s to seeing you again (I told her I’d start saving so I can hire her to be my wedding photographer one day – her reply? “we’re going to make this happen!”)