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Featuring Jenna Myers

Featuring Jenna Myers

This week’s featured photographer is Jenna Myers of JMY Photography in Vernon, BC

 

Where do you operate your business?

In Vernon, BC


Your Website


Your Facebook page

https://www.facebook.com/photos.by.jmy//


>Your Instagram account

https://www.instagram.com/jennamyersphoto/


>Your Pinterest account

https://www.pinterest.com/jennamyers7/

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Technical Specs:

 
Camera used

Fuji X-t10

Lens choices

Fujifilm XF 35mm (50 equivalent)

Processing Software (just provide the names of the one’s you use)

Lightroom

Do you use any actions?

DMWL & Mastin Labs

Do you retouch and if so can you give me a quick rundown on if you use any plugins, etc?

Totally Rad! Pro Retouch 2.0

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CLIENTS:

 
What most people want to know is how you market to your clients.  Have you qualified who your is your ideal client?  

 Full disclosure, I am super shit at marketing, but am working on it. I blog once a week and have a presence on social media. Lots of my new clients come because a friend has told them about me, or a friend posted their photos online.

Yep! My perfect client is around 30, doesn’t usually do a lot of hair & makeup, and isn’t very confident that she’s sexy.

I’d love to add into the article any inspiring client stories you might have.  Also have you had any issues with clients that you would like to share how you resolved them.  That is always something that can hugely benefit the readers.

Um, I’m not sure this is anything spectacular to your readers, but it was the first time that I really felt like I had an impact on a client, so it’s a story that stuck with me. I wanted to go snowboarding at a resort near where I live, so I posted on a forum that anyone that could offer me a couple of free tickets & a model release I would do a session with them. My first response was in 30 seconds. I loved her look and she seemed so confident so we set it up. When I met up with her she told me that she was very self conscious and had insecurities about her body which had changed a bit. She was also going through some relationship stuff that I really connected with as it was similar to when I was living at a ski resort. I sent her the online gallery and got an email back that started “Jenna…” and my heart sunk, I thought that she hated them. The email continued “You have no idea what incredible joy and self-love this brought on.” Now I chase that reaction throughout my whole client experience 🙂

Do you have a physical or digital “welcome” product you give the clients and can you share that if you do. You can give me a link or email. Thanks. .

I am in the process of uploading now and don’t really want to share my old one.

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SALES:

 
This is probably one of the most important things that the readers want to know.  How do you sell to your clients?  Can you provide info on your sales process and your pricing.  I’d like to be able to provide numbers on what you charge for a session and what your range is for your products, like albums for instance, but if you don’t feel comfortable sharing to much, just give me what fits your comfort level.

 
Currently I’m transitioning from a shoot & burn model that looks like this:
Session fee $250 (includes approx 30 images)
Albums $219-369
Glass box with prints $200

The model I’m transitioning too:
$275 session fee
– pre-session in person consult
– 1.5 hour session
– in person reveal/ sales session
– with digital images starting at $105 per image

What products perform best in your studio? 

 Digitals

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STUDIO:

 
Best describe your workspace.  Do you have a studio or work from home?  How large is your space?  What are the challenges with it?  What works really well for you?  Can you please include a photo or two of it, if possible.

I work from home and don’t rent a studio space. Lots of my sessions take place in client’s homes which I usually love. The only challenge is when my preferred room to shoot in has shitty wall colors for portraits, or has a ton of clutter, not like cute clutter, like dirty dishes clutter haha.

Occasionally my client will not want to shoot at home because she’s keeping it a secret from a partner, so we will shoot at my house. I call it my creepy spare room because the house is 111 years old and that room used to be a “massage parlour”. That usually gets a laugh out of them. It’s a small west facing room with just a bed in it that I move around, nothing on the walls and the walls that you can’t see are piled high with random shit, such a unique client experience haha.

Do you have any plans to change and/or grow from your space in the near future.

Yes, we’re looking at buying our very own place in the next 6 months and I’ll dedicate a room in that place to being a studio. I can’t fucking wait.

Do you keep strict hours of operation with your clients?

 Not super strict. If I get an email at 6 maybe I’ll answer it, maybe I’ll wait until the next day. I only book sessions that fit in with what works for my family.

Yep I work with window light, I often cover the windows with black garbage bags so that it’s coming from one small directional source only, I like that effect. I’ve played around with night shoots but haven’t nailed it. I’d like to up my skill level in that game so that next winter I’m not so restricted to when I can shoot.

Do you have makeup artists you work with in your studio?  If so, can you give me a run down of what the rate is you pay them and how you feel about the importance of that relationship.  If you don’t use them, is there a reason?

 When I moved to Vernon I didn’t have any relationships with any artists. I’ve been here for 18 months now and I’m developing some relationships. I can totally see that it’s important to have consistent make up looks throughout my work. Also I feel torn because some clients that come to me don’t want any makeup at all, which is their preference, so I don’t want to force makeup on them.

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BUSINESS IN GENERAL:

 

How long have you been in business?  What were you doing before you started your photo business?

I’ve been specializing in boudoir since November 2015.

Did you go to school for photographer or are you self taught?

Self taught baby!

Did you always want to be a photographer or was it something that came later in life?

I have always needed a creative outlet, and remember romanticizing photographers for quite a few years. But I also romanticized accountants haha I’m so shit at money.

What is your biggest struggle in this business?

 Oh man. Sometimes I’m like I just need someone to tell me if I’m going in the right direction, without being a dick about it, mostly in the context of marketing/ branding.

Is there a reason you shoot boudoir and do you shoot any other genre?  If you’re excusive, and/or recently went exclusive can you give the readers some insight into why you did.  If you’ve only ever done boudoir, again we’d love to hear why.

The first time I remember being told I was beautiful, was when my daughter was old enough to talk, and she told me. My vision as an intimate photographer, is to show the men and women that I work with that they are beautiful too because sometimes we can’t see it and we need to be told.

I do exclusively shoot boudoir. I used to push for everything, family portraits, lifestyle sessions, weddings, maternity, but it just doesn’t drive me as much. I like the one on one connections in a boudoir session.

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ADVICE:

 
If you knew someone who wanted to be a photographer, and could give them one piece of important advice, what would that be?

 Just do you. Don’t follow other photographers work, pull your inspiration from other sources.

Have you ever done a boudoir session yourself, if you are a female (sorry guys 🙂 ? Do you think it’s something that is important for female boudoir photographers to do?

Yes, I was shitting myself over doing a session and kept coming up with excuses why I couldn’t, that I needed to lose weight, love my hair, or I didn’t have enough money. Empathy one of my top strengths, so I needed to experience a session, to experience what my clients go through from start to finish.

How do you feel about the male / female debate regarding boudoir photographers?  

I would feel comfortable shooting with either a man or a woman.

What do you do to avoid burn-out? Is there ever a time when you just want to throw your camera out the window?

Man, I think I’m going through a burn out period currently. My sessions feel uninspired and I’m procrastinating hard. I think I’ve just got to do it. Check back in, in a few months lol.
I also find a lot of cup-filling going to the movies, usually by myself. I love the visual artistry, the costuming, everything: it revs me up creatively.

What do you love about the business?

 Self gratification. I feel like I’m doing something significant.

What do you hate about the business?

 Probably marketing, in the future I’ll hire someone to handle this for me.

Are you a member of any professional photo organizations like PPA, WPPI?  What benefit do you feel you get by being a member?

 Nope. Just AIBP & the Do More Photographers Group

Do you compete and do you have any opinions on it?  AIBP runs contests regularly.  Do you participate?  If not, is there a reason you don’t?

 I haven’t entered any photos in an AIBP contest yet, maybe in the future.

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SOME FUN MORE PERSONAL STUFF:

 
Favorite food?   

 Smoked salmon

One guilty pleasure in life?

 Cookie dough blizzards

What is your favorite piece of clothing? 

 Black sheer lace bra

What’s one song on your playlist? 

Tons of shit: Nirvana, Ratatat, Alison wonderland, Adele, Beyonce lol

What’s your favorite movie genre? Example?

 Love a good documentary

Favorite shoes to wear?  

 Flip flops

What are you currently reading? 

 The Stranger Beside Me – Ann Rule

If you could go anywhere in the world, where would that be?   

 Japan in the winter!

If you could go back and do over anything in your life, what would that be?

No regrets
 

If you could meet and photograph someone famous, who would that be and why?

 I’ve never met a famous person lol I’d love to meet a handful of pro snowboarders guys and girls and photograph them.

What do you struggle with the most in life? (not photo related)

 Anxiety/ depression since I was a little one.

Are you married, single, have kids, husband?  Is life a juggling act for you?

 Me and my boyfriend have a 5 year old daughter, she’s the bomb. Life is a total juggling act haha.
 
Who inspires you the most in life? Work?

Friends my age who are going through similar life experiences inspire me. Cause if they’re doing it, I can to. I love when people get me and they know I get them back.

 
If you could provide one single piece of advice to influence a young person’s direction in life, what would that be

Just be yourself, it sounds easy but it’s not.

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Cathy Nance
Cathy Nance

Photographer and Owner of Cathy Nance Studios - Intimate Editorial Art

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