First Birthday Fun

As you can tell around here, I just adore playing with babies.  They are so much fun and happy and not shy of the camera (for the most part ;)).  Miss Briley was no exception.  She is so darn cute!  I have two boys, so anytime I can play dress up with a baby girl I’m in!  Maybe God DID know what he was doing giving me boys… I would be headband and tiara poor hahaha!!!

Happy birthday, Briley!  I hope your day was full of cupcakes and laughs!

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Let’s play a game of Where’s Wade…  So lucky that these are friends!  And yes, I do have one without my kiddo peering through the door.  Bahahahhaha!!

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  • Mandy Elliott - Jennifer, these images are so lovely. I especially love the photo inside their home on the bed how cute!

Pruning my time

It has been almost 6 years since I began this journey.  Along the way I have made some long lasting friendships, worked my butt off learning and growing, hit a few bumps and fell in a few ditches, and have had some major high moments.  I have learned what I love to do vs what I cringe at when I see an email come through on a project that simply doesn’t speak to my heart.  Learning to say no to said projects helped make me feel more empowered to focus on the things I do love and grow at that.  As the saying goes “Jack of all trades, master of none.”

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That last part was hard, because at the beginning I wanted to be great at all things.  The fact is you can’t be great at everything if you are stretched over too many different techniques, styles, genres, etc…  I’ve learned to cut those loses and have also learned that I do not miss those things.  At.  All.

This last year has also taught me that I can’t do it all yet again.  I can’t go from weekend to weekend not knowing if I have a session, a wedding, or family time.  It isn’t fair to my family to take a last minute session the day before if we had planned to spend the following day together.  Jumping at those opportunities didn’t make me a hero in my client’s eyes, but only made me a ghost in my family’s eyes.  I knew that I need to add more boundaries that would create more focus.  With that focus comes dedication and that can only lead to better and better production.   The mom guilt vanishes because I have dedicated a little time to make a big impact and I’m not feeling guilty at a session anymore.  I’m feeling 100% there and on top of my game.

This means that from now on there will be posts and advertisements for the dates that I am available.  I want to be transparent with my offerings.  I want to be dedicated.  And I want to all in.  There will be many more mini sessions open up.  There will be intentional sessions – no more flying by the seat of our pants.  I want your session to mean more than just posing for a few pictures.  I want it to be a well thought moment.

The date that will be available in March is March 21st for Easter/Spring minis!  More information will be coming soon on those, but if you would like to be on the wait list, send me an email to jennifer@jennbrownphoto.com.  I’m excited for these and can’t wait to see some cute Easter outfits!

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An East Tennessee Ice Storm Session

It isn’t very often that East Tennessee gets to experience an ice storm that shuts down most of the surrounding counties for a full week, but when it happens…  So does an impromptu ice storm session!  All day I had been thinking of how gorgeous the light was the evening before at sunset.  The golden rays of the sun beamed gorgeously against the white ice/snow mixture with a faint pink cast in the sky around the mountain skyline.  God makes for an awesome artist!

The clean white backdrop that had generously dusted the ground the days before makes any color pop out in contrast.  The red plaid created a warmth.  And this little guy always melts my heart.

Ice Storm 2015 Photo Session
Ice Storm 2015 Photo Session

“Are you almost done?  I’m freezing!”

Ice Storm 2015 Photo Session
Ice Storm 2015 Photo Session

Ice Storm 2015 Photo Session

 

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If you are interested in booking a photo session, simply contact me from the “contact” link above.  Our base collections begin at $200.

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Johnson City TN Engagement Session :: Hannah & Juliano

While vacationing in sunny Florida, Hannah never expected to find the love of her life, but that’s just what happened when her eyes first met Juliano’s from across the room of a restaurant.  Love at first sight at it’s finest and a story as whimsical as their love for each other.  I’m excited to tell their love story and cannot wait for their May wedding!

Johnson City Wedding Photographer
Johnson City Wedding Photographer
Johnson City Wedding Photographer
Johnson City Wedding Photographer
Johnson City Wedding Photographer
Johnson City Wedding Photographer
Johnson City Wedding Photographer
Johnson City Wedding Photographer
Johnson City Wedding Photographer
Johnson City Wedding Photographer
Johnson City Wedding Photographer
Johnson City Wedding Photographer
Johnson City Wedding Photographer
Johnson City Wedding Photographer

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The month of love

All months of the year should be about love, BUT since February is considered the “month of love” it should serve as a great reminder to be extra gentle with those around us.  Choose love.  Always.

And this sweet engagement session is coming soon!

Knoxville Wedding Photographer

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Pleasant Hill Vineyards Wedding :: Meagan and Jason

Love the idea of a vineyard wedding right here in East Tennessee?  You definitely need to check out Pleasant Hill Vineyards located in Maryville, TN!!  This was a gorgeous location (and I had a pretty awesome bride and groom to boot!).  Meagan had a lot of beautiful fall touches in her wedding decor.  Orange and Lavender colors topped her list of fall inspired wedding colors and it turned out oh so lovely!!!

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Clinton TN Family Photographer :: Baby Clay at 12 Months

Lately my focus has been all over the place.  There are so many things going on:: exciting, hum-drum, new, old, rejuvenating, and draining.  As I have been learning to give it over to the One who makes all things possible, I’ve been praying for doors to close, doors to open, and the knowledge to know which is which.  It seems as if there has been a shift in what I feel matters more.  While it isn’t much different than what I’ve thought was important all along, there is now a burning desire to get there.  To make it happen.

As quickly as that desire reaches my heart, fear slides in and begins to tell me lies that I foolishly believe.

Then He reminds me what I’m capable of because He made me.  Imperfectly perfect.

This session was a reminder for me that I can do it.  I could make what matters more happen.  There was such joy to hear a little one giggle, to see mommy and daddy smile with pride, and to be able to document such a special time in a family’s life.  Happy birthday, Baby Clay!

Knoxville Family Lifestyle Photographer
Knoxville Family Lifestyle Photographer
Knoxville Family Lifestyle Photographer
Knoxville Family Lifestyle Photographer
Knoxville Family Lifestyle Photographer

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Now offering Mini Wedding Collections!

In the last couple of years, I’ve done a handful of weddings that really and truly didn’t need the whole shebang.  I could completely relate to their reasoning.  Some were shoestring budgets, but wanted a photographer they LOVED!  Some were marrying for the 2nd time and wanted great photos but were not going crazy with an all day event.  Some were even eloping or having a pop up wedding (which is so much fun and ridiculously romantic!).  I created the Mini Wedding Collection price menu just for them.

Affordable Knoxville Wedding Photographer

For a few years, I put off advertising these because I wanted every bride to have a full day documented.  At the beginning of this year as I was goal setting for 2015, I began breaking down the parts that I loved about photographing a wedding.  It came down to 3 things:: The bridal portraits, bride and groom formals, and the wedding ceremony.  I do not need 6+ hours to photograph those 3 things, and many times I only get a total of an hour to do so!  Of course I love family portraits and bridal party photos but I also know I can complete those in this time frame, as well!  These collections help us to intentionally plan your photography, not feel rushed, and still get you those most important moments of your wedding day.

Not only that, but I know what it is like to plan a budget wedding and feel completely overwhelmed with the mounting dollar amounts of every contract signed and deposit paid.  These mini collections help my brides and they help me (I get to snuggle my babies much sooner!)!!  If you are planning a mini wedding and would like more information about the Mini Collections, feel free to contact me above or email me at jennifer@jennbrownphoto.com.

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How are you?

No, really.  I want to know how you are.  How is your heart?  Is it just beating slowly or is it pounding away with joy and excitement?  Is it hurting or is it full of love?

Mommy Monday

How has your goal planning for 2015 going?  I know.. We are almost in February.  I was done with that after the first week of this year!  I hear you loud and clear, but I have to tell you something that will completely upset what you have written.  You see.  I made MY list of goals as well.  I wrote down one by one what I wanted to accomplish for 2015.  Then I put it away and started to work on a few of those items.  You can only eat an elephant one bite at a time, right??  Turns out I was trying to eat the wrong elephant.

You see this year I decided to let someone else decide which of those goals I would accomplish.  I decided to hand everything over to God and let Him decide which was more important.  THEN impatiently (after only two weeks hahahaha!!) I started to get upset that all of the goals I had set were not seeing any progress.  Where are my extra January bookings?!  What can’t Sean and I find time to spend together instead of always working?

Two totally contradicting statements if you look close enough.  I wrote down I want to be busier and I want to slow down so I can spend time with my husband.  One was answered, but I was expecting the other to be answered in which later I would probably complain about not having any time with Sean.  Vicious cycle I set myself up for!  But I didn’t see it as answered until yesterday.  I didn’t see the door that was being opened before me because I was staring intently at the other door.  You can only enter one door in a hallway at a time.

Then I was God-smacked.  (Yes, I totally realize that is a 90s term, but I’ve been listening to a TON of 90s Christian music lately.  Don’t judge.)  I began my day yesterday with coffee and my devotional trying to center my mind on what I needed to accomplish before having a few gorgeous ladies over at my house for dinner, conversation, and a reality check on goal making and how to balance life.  I was about to tell them all of the things that I do that keeps me sane while burning the candle at both ends and in the middle (Thank you, Lara Casey, for that line!  It describes me perfectly!!!).  I was about to tell them the wrong way to do it.  I had prayed and wrote in my journal that I wanted God to speak through me and give me peace about what I was saying.  Then I opened up my Jesus Calling to January 19th.  If you haven’t read it, go now and do so.

Why do we make goals??  Because we are looking for something.  We are looking for success.  We are looking for happiness and maybe if we reach that goal we will finally be happy.  I’ve done it time and time again and once I get there I’ve already got another goal that I want to get to.  It’s never good enough.  It never fills my heart and make me content.  The goals I make are temporary joy and then I have to find something else to work my tail-end off because then that will FINALLY make me happy.  The struggle is real folks.

The first sentence of the second paragraph answered my prayer.

I am the goal of all your searching.

My goals are temporary.  My goals are short term.  He is my long term goal and the only one I should be pursuing as hard as I had been trying to pursue the ones I created for myself.

I’ll go ahead and ask again. How are you?

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They said dreams this big don’t happen

I sat at my desk looking at my computer with a head swimming in things that I need to do.  And I sat a little bit longer not taking any action because I thought, “I’m not good enough to do this yet.  I need more time.”  Then the self doubt filled my mind, “What am I thinking?!  I CAN’T do this!  I’m not nearly good enough!!!”  Then fear set in, “What will people think?  Will they laugh?  Will they make jokes about me??”

I sat paralyzed at my desk and began to tear up at a dream that I thought could never happen for me.  No one could POSSIBLY understand how I felt.  I’ve been there before…  with dreams bigger than me.  With naysayers who said I didn’t stand a chance.  Naysayers who were friends and family.  Broken hearted and discouraged from something I loved, I remember weeping on my bed and being told that I needed to do something with my life more practical.  More mundane.  Because that’s just what people do.

Those words still pierce to this day.

All the what ifs and could haves flood my mind when these thoughts start creeping in.  Why didn’t I do this?  Gosh I wish I would have been smarter with my time.  I shouldn’t have listened to myself and pursued my heart’s passion.  Yes, I’ve been there.  I am there.  And to some extent I will always look back saddened and wonder what if.

Sound familiar?  Surely I’m not alone.  I can’t be the only person who wasn’t given a fair shake when it came to big dreams.  Those fears and self doubt and worry?  That’s what Just Start is all about.  It’s about breaking down those tasks one bite at a time.  It’s about growing.  It’s about gaining confidence.  It’s about forgetting those lies and pursuing the truths of what you are 1000000% capable of doing.  Are you ready?  I am.  Let’s prove them wrong.

Learn more and sign up here –>  Just Start

Dreaming

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