Meet Jacqueline, The Pig Farmer!
I want to start this blog first by saying how much I LOVE my job! Before becoming a photographer I worked retail. Depending on what part of retail you're in you may have the ability to connect with people, make friends with your customers, and really get to know them. I did have that ability for many years as the Store Manager at our local Hot Topic. However, I was only ever able to meet a certain segment of people really, and the on-going connections were nothing like the connections I make by owning my own business. In this field, one of my favorite aspects of the job is the connection. I feel like I need to get to know you a little bit before I start shooting. Sometimes it may be a consultation for a wedding, and other times it may be on the day of the shoot. I like to take a little time while setting up equipment, or pretending to set up equipment, to chat with clients and get to know who they are. It makes the client more comfortable, gives me a chance to really look AT you, and of course, within you. In this field I meet such a wide range of clients, and I'm so thrilled to work with people on so many different personal journeys!
Without further ado, meet Jacqueline!
Jacqueline moved to Sharon, SC from Georgia, but is originally from Indiana. When I asked her what inspired her to become a pig farmer, she stated that she always knew she wanted to do something in "AG". It took me a second, and then I realized she meant Agriculture. Well, actually I asked if that's what she meant haha. Us photographers have our own lingo that we take for granted too! She started out as a cattle farmer, and eventually did an internship with pig farming, and she fell in love with it! At her pig farm they manage over 2000 pigs between her and 2 other people. I was blown away! 2000+ 500 lb.s pigs coming at me hungry? No way! I am seriously in awe of her, but what I loved instantly with her was her absolute passion for what she does and for the animals she cares for.
I brought my son, Jacob, to be my bag/reflector holder to this particular shoot. Of course, being a teenager, he was argumentative at points as to how to hold the reflector, but what was really interesting was how HE was able to connect with her too. To be honest, on a higher level that I could. He just took Biology here at Rock Hill High School. How many years has it been for me? Yeah, we won't state haha, but they discussed selective breeding processes, and things of that nature. Pit bulls, chickens, you name it-we discussed it! One very interesting thing I learned was the "shower in, shower out" routine, and the necessity of the flu shot for pig farmers. I had no idea that human viruses could be spread to the pigs, and that one would have to shower before taking care of the pigs to avoid contamination. That brings me to another thing I love about my job; I learn some piece of random knowledge at every single shoot!
Jacqueline needed a headshot for a pig farmer convention coming up in Idaho. How awesome! Pig Farmers Unite!
This was also the first shoot that I took my son, and only my son, on. He can be negative about holding a reflector for an hour, but he really enjoyed meeting her. This particular shoot opened his eyes a little more about why I'm so passionate about photography, because he was able to interact with the client first hand, as well as discuss payment on the ride home, and of course see the final images. When he's assisted in the past I never had him doing a whole lot, and his main source of assistance to me is being a model at least 15 minutes per day for me to practice. He abhors that haha! I'm so grateful that Jacqueline's Lifestyle Head Shot Session was his first paid shoot as my assistant, and that he and I were able to have that connection. We listened to the White Stripes all the way there, which was also a blast!
For this shoot I chose to do an environmental portrait, lifestyle, headshot. I believed this was important for the intended use of the final product, and on location portraits at the client's home always give me a better connection. I chose to use the available light along with my Jerry Ghionis Omega Reflector. I brought a flash with an octobox and went ahead and set it up to have it ready; however, I only took about 4 images with it at the end of the shoot. The quality of light from the sun with the reflector just gives the shoot such a natural feel to it, and who doesn't like those catchlights in her beautiful eyes! The omega reflector is shoot through, and that's how those catchlights are achieved. You can see a few sparkles in the greenery in the background, and although you may not know what they are from, they add interest and ground the image for it's intended purpose. The sparkles are actually wire fence, but it's just thrown out of focus. How awesome!
Cheers and Have a Wonderful Day!
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