Author Archives: Jodi Anne

Church, Vodka, Valium & Alibis

I went to church on Sunday.  For those that know me, know that I am not really of the church-going type… but for those that follow me on Instagram know that I’m going through a very. VERY.  rough spot in my marriage right now, as well.  My marriage has been on very rocky ground for several years now, but still the blow that the end is lurking near has sent me spiraling and gasping for air along the way.  I have a dear friend who has been through some pretty gnarly situations in her marriage, as well, who has stood by her phone every waking hour for my every text.  She has checked in on me on some days by the hour, and has listened/read EVERY crazy thought that has come into my mind.  If I needed an alibi, she would likely be that person for me.  She is in far too deep, but I’m not sure if I could have survived the last month of my life without her.

So, when this dear friend invited me to church this last Sunday… and by invited I mean, gave me 6 different start times to choose from… offered her husband for babysitting services… and promised me vodka and valium as an after-church-treat… I knew that she had my best interest at heart.  I also knew that I’m willing to do almost anything to find some clarity, and be able to catch my breath for the first time in weeks.

I would consider myself an iffy-religious-based person, at best.  I have a hard time with the parameters of Christianity, and I like the idea of simply being a good human more than I like the idea of organized religion.  So, when the service started and it was HEAVY on the Bible verses and stories of the resurrection (since we’re nearing Easter), I could have chosen to skip out mentally, but I didn’t.  The message of the service was still very loud and clear to me because of the way that the preacher? bishop? priest? delivered the power of her words.  She spoke of the night before the crucifixion… the time spent in Gethsemane.  She did a fantastic job of relating that to real life, and the message was that in the most deafening times of your life — when everything you know has been crushed — something magnificent can come from the pain, if you let it.  She gave examples of bread being crushed and turning to grain, grapes to wine, and olives to precious oil.  She said that if you allow this time and pressure to create something beautiful, exactly that will happen.

I am hoping with every part of my being that what can come of this crushing time in my life is a better, stronger, and healthier marriage… but I am also beginning to accept the fact that if that doesn’t happen, then the beauty of this awful time will be a better, stronger, and healthier version of myself.  Actually… that is going to happen either way… I just hope it is a better, stronger, healthier STILL MARRIED version of myself.

Thank you, everyone… for all the love and support that I have received.  Countless hours of service from friends, text messages from wonderful people, and lines of support from complete strangers have been shared with me, and I am forever grateful to all of you.

Photo credit: Shannon Elizabeth Photography  Makeup credit:  Amelia C. & Co.

Las Vegas Wedding Photographer :: Ashley & Jacob

The 2017 Spring wedding season was very kind to me this year in that the first wedding of the season was basically served on a nice shiny platter for Janelle and I.  Around every turn was something beautiful to photograph, and the day ran as smooth as any wedding I may have ever had the pleasure of shooting (which is likely due to Angelica from Green Orchid Events being at the helm).  Ashley and Jacob were an absolute dream couple.  You may remember them from the side of a mountain earlier in the year which will prove exactly how wonderful they were to work with!!

Ash and Jake came to Vegas all the way from the Chicago area to have a relatively small and intimate wedding with their closest friends and family.  Ashley envisioned a timeless and elegant black-tie wedding, but since she’s in medical school right now, Jacob actually took the reigns on handling most of the logistics of the day… even though his time is limited since he is an engineer.  Overachievers, right??  ha ha ha!  However, had it not been for these big aspirations then these two may have never met to begin with!! I don’t remember the name of the class, but I remember from one of the heartfelt toasts from the night that they locked eyes during one of their introductory courses in engineering which led them to down the path towards their wedding day!  Now, these two college lovebirds are the freshest newlyweds on the block.

We started our day off at Mandarin Oriental with the bride and groom getting ready in different suites.  They both had their equally as fantastic wedding party with them as they dressed, and it wasn’t long before Jacob was seeing Ashley for the first time as she descended a beautiful staircase on the hotel property.

After Ashley and Jake saw each other for the first time we hopped off to The Smith Center to have the wedding party and bride & groom portraits done on their beautiful property!  The images that came from this morsel of time are absolutely stunning, as we had the best light to work with!

Suzanne from ShePaperie created this custom signage for the couple to enjoy on their wedding day, and  it added a beautiful pop of whimsy to the day!  Amelia C & Company killed the hair and makeup on all of the ladies… and behind the scenes you can’t see them, but NewFly Films was right next to me on all of these images making sure that Ashley and Jacob have a beautiful wedding day video!!

Ashley wore this absolutely insane Lazaro gown that not only was stunning as a fitted silhouette, but also had a removable tulle skirt!  Ashley wanted to make sure to capture both looks in her portraits, and I was all too happy to oblige that request!
I don’t think that it takes a genius to figure out that Layers of Lovely took charge of this beautiful flower wall and the gorgeous arrangements for the day!  She never disappoints!

Never One to Discriminate

When I was debating whether or not to launch my tagline and hashtag “Turning Hoes into Housewives since 2010” (#turninghoesintohousewives) I knew that it would be very polarizing for my business.  I new that it would turn a lot of people AWAY from me and I would lose the opportunity to shoot their wedding.  It was HARD to think that I would lose out on business just because I was choosing to align myself with something that is meant to be a silly nod to my love of gangster rap and my adoration for Dr. Dre and Snoop who I like to think are very large branches in my family tree… or my long lost cousins, in the least!  ha ha ha!

However, what I also knew was that there are two sides of polarization, and while my tagline/hashtag would very easily push people away from using me as their wedding photographer, it would also create a pocket of wonderful clients just waiting to get the chance to be in front of my camera.  Those clients ‘get me’ before they ever even send that first email.  They know that a photography session with me is going to be the opposite of serious, and that a day spent in front of my camera can be a fun experience rather than a chore.  I can happily say that the clients that fit into this J. Anne sweet spot are the epicenter to my business.  They are the heartbeat that keeps J. Anne alive.  They are my people, and I will forever be as loyal to them as they are to me.

But…. with that being said… I am afraid that for the last two years I have been doing something that is NOT fair to my clients.  I have discriminated against my grooms and left them out of all of the fun.  I have focused solely on ‘Hoes before Bros’ instead of excepting the idea of equality in my business relationships.

That ends today.

In light of what is going on with the world in regards to women’s rights, marriage equality, and all of the forms of the civil rights movement…. I bring you J. Anne’s attempt to level the playing field.  My brides will no longer only be the ones receiving the hashtag congratulating them on their graduation from turning from hoe to housewife… my grooms will also be breaking the glass ceiling and being lifted into the highest regard by being bestowed the amazing honor and privilege of being dubbed…. no longer a Boyfriend… but, upon their marriage, a respected and highly distinguished…. Baby Daddy.

From this day forward, let it be known that J. Anne is taking steps towards bride and groom equality.   #TurningHoesIntoHousewives will no longer be the sole focus of my business as my quest to be #TurningBoyfriendsIntoBabyDaddies will be equally sought after.

(Note to Readers):  Please read this blog with a shit ton of humor.  Please don’t take me or this post too seriously.  My intentions are not to degrade men, women, or the institution of marriage.  My intent is simply to have fun.  If you find the need to write a snarky comment, have pause… and while you’re paused… unfollow me.  It’s okay if this offends you.  I won’t be upset.  We don’t have to be friends… although I’d love it if we could be.  xo.  Jodi)