Welcome back to Locally Grown Weddings week, our series dedicated to the SF Bay Area based collective of eco-chic wedding artists! (If you haven’t already, check out our interviews with the group’s planner, hair and makeup artist, caterer, and florist.) Today we’ll be getting to know Jenna, the group’s Photographer. Enjoy!
Tell us a bit about yourself and your company.
I began shooting when my grandpa put my first camera in my hands in highschool. Although I have to admit, I think in the beginning, I just loved the purple paisley strap that accompanied it. Gradually though, I loved seeing peoples joy and happiness. I love this quote by Elliott Erwitt, “photography is an art of observation, it has little to do with the things you see and everything to do with the way you see them.” I also experienced being a bride in 2011 when I married my best friend and for once was on the other side of the camera. It was an amazing day for so many reasons but it also taught me a lot about my own approach to wedding photography. I realized the impact of my images and how important that day was and the people that made the day. It wasn’t about my Pinterest board or the crafts that I had spent HOURS on…it was about the people that gathered around us that day, that is what I will remember and what my brides to cherish as well.
See the rest of the interview after the cut!
How did you get into wedding photography?
It was a bit of a fluke and a funny story…I went to a bridal fair with one of my friends and we stopped by a wedding photographer’s booth and began talking to them. She proceeded to tell them how great of a photographer I was (as I kicked her from below, since I had never worked professionally before) and if they ever needed help they should call me. Sure enough I got a phone call the following week and they asked if I wanted to come along to shoot. I was extremely nervous, but very excited and came home loving everything about the day. I began shooting for as many wedding photographers that would let me and then in 2007 I started my own business, JennaBeth Photography.
What is your favorite part of the wedding day to capture?
My absolute favorite moment is when the bride and groom have just exchanged their vows and begin to process out of the ceremony. The looks on their faces are so priceless, completely happy and just beyond giddy.
What is the most awkward moment you’ve experienced while on the job?
I think I’m lucky that I haven’t had too much awkwardness on wedding days.
What’s the best thing you ever ate at a wedding?
Well I have to say my wedding season is mostly filled with filet mignon and diet coke…and it never tasted so good after 8 hours of working.
What is your favorite venue and why?
I think the more I travel outside of Northern California I realize how lucky I am to shoot here. We have the city, the beach, the mountains, wine country and all the beauty in between. I can shoot year round in the sun…how lucky is that!? I recently shot a wedding in Chicago and my 2nd shooter was saying how fantastic it was that I got to shoot in California because the light is so golden. I never thought of this until she mentioned it and now every time I’m shooting a sunset I think of that California golden light. So my favorite venue is anywhere outdoor in Northern California.
Nikon or Canon?
Canon for sure, ever since the purple strap!
What is your dream location to shoot a wedding?
I have always wanted to shoot a wedding in India…with an elephant.
If you could shoot any celebrity wedding (past, present or future), who would be the lucky couple?
I would love to go back in time and shoot my grandparents wedding (in my book they are celebrities), they had the best love story.
What’s the biggest lesson you’ve learned, and would pass along to other new wedding photographers just getting started?
Photograph everything – say yes to everything and then decide what you like after you have said yes to everything. Keep exploring and keep growing, never stop pushing yourself to keep improving and learning. Keep the magic alive inside you as an artist.
Thanks Jenna! For more information about JennaBeth Photgraphy, visit Locally Grown Weddings WeddingPlannrLove profile or head straight to her website.
Do you have any questions or comments for Jenna? Add them to the comments below.