I’ve been sitting in front of my computer for a half an hour now wondering how to start this post. And still have no idea cause the person I wanna write about swept me of my feet. Literally. I guess its best to start from the beginning.

Last year I got married. As one of my friends commented, “I read the internet” in search of inspiration, ideas, and photographs. Somewhere along the way, the name of Jasmine Star popped out. The second I saw her images, I was in-love. In the images. In her story. In the way she’s communicating to clients. In the way her blog and website reflected her personality. In the way she wrote glimpses of her everyday life on the blog. When the time came to pick out one wedding photograph to research for my thesis, her name was on the top of my list.

Last month I had the opportunity to view her live-broadcasted workshop in Seattle organised by creativeLIVE where I picked up bits-and-pieces of her story. I found many articles describing her vertiginous success. She launched her own business in 2006. when she photographed 3 weddings. Then booked 37 more in 2007. The numbers keep growing from year to year. In 2009. she was voted for one of the top 10 wedding photographers in the organization of American Photo magazine. She stated, in one of the interviews, that “she never paid for a single advertisement. Her Web site and blog are sufficient to keep new clients coming in on a regular basis. Her best source of new business is word-of-mouth and referrals from previous satisfied clients. 
One more thing that differentiate her from others is her willingness to help other wedding vendors. Selflessly.

Regardless all the articles/biographies/quotes I read, I had the feeling I’m missing something – “the core”, “the magic ingredient” that made her pop. So I decided to read her blog marking milestones important for my theses along the way (how she organised her business and how she branded herself and differentiated from others). Yes, the entire blog. And, man, that girl loooves to blog.

I spent the last couple of days reading it cause, as i mentioned before, the girl loves to blog. She posted her very first blog post in February 2006 were she explains her goal: to become a wedding photographer. She was very regular in posting on the blog and wrote about everything: her first experiences as a second-shooter, her first booked wedding, everyday things (like a dinner with her husband JD).

In May 2007. she launched her new blog. Since then, she posted over 1,000 posts (and yes – I read them all). The word of her work spread like fire and people (future brides, college photographs) were reading the blog, leaving comments and following her work:
Blog

In February 2009. her photography blog was voted as the winner of PPA’s Fresh Blog Contest.

One more “specificity” of Jasmine Star is her desire to share her knowledge with others – in 2007. she started her FAQ series where she answers questions sent to her (from camera settings to posing and branding yourself). In time, that series evolved to Reflections post and Shooting Star installments.

Its very hard to make a “time-line” or “cause-effect relations” of Jasmine Star success cause she is all over the place. She is a blog-writer, a Showit promoter, regular speaker at WPPI, workshop organizer (can’t wait for her to come to Europe again and host a workshop…in less than a month, she will be hosting a workshop in London but unfortunately I can’t attend…), passionate reader… All at the same time.

She is constantly questioning her work and reinventing herself. In August 2010. she relaunched her website with a little help from an another amazing artist/designer – Promise Tangeman:

Web

In this post she writes why is important to create a website that is reflection of the artist itself. And how to do it. If you have time, read the post… If you don’t have time – make time. It’s worth it.

With rapid Facebook growth and considering the fact that Jasmine Star heavily uses social media in steering her business, the logical step for her was to start a Facebook Fanpage

Facebook

I can’t wait to see what she has in store for us in the future… My favourite Jasmine Star Quote would be: If you feel like you have to do it like me, you’ve missed the point. Regardless the artistic field you are involved in, goal is to find your own way: define the clients you wanna work with, define what makes you pop from the crowd, and go for it. 
Throughout her blog, she has given us the opportunity to learn from her creative process; not to copy-paste.

p.s. a friend of mine is getting married next year in Dominican Republic so I instantly recommend her to contact Jasmine Star. I hope she will for all the selfish reasons – I could meet her and see her modus operandi first hand 🙂

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