The Supreme Court stated today that all same-sex marriage bans violate the 14th Amendment of the federal Constitution. The decision now brings marriage equality to every state in America. The court was split 5–4, with Justice Anthony Kennedy writing the majority opinion.
“No union is more profound than marriage, for it embodies the highest ideals of love, fidelity, devotion, sacrifice, and family. In forming a marital union, two people become something greater than once they were. As some of the petitioners in these cases demonstrate, marriage embodies a love that may endure even past death. It would misunderstand these men and women to say they disrespect the idea of marriage. Their plea is that they do respect it, respect it so deeply that they seek to find its fulfillment for themselves. Their hope is not to be condemned to live in loneliness, excluded from one of civilization’s oldest institutions. They ask for equal dignity in the eyes of the law. The Constitution grants them that right.” -Justice Anthony Kennedy
We are thrilled to see equality for all; for everyone to have the right to marry whichever sex they choose. Love finally wins! This is a huge step for America. In celebration of the decision, we’d like to announce a special-
From now until August 31st 2015,
All same sex couples,
getting married within Los Angeles County-
Jen Castle Photography would like to gift you 25% off,
on any wedding day photography package.
Book with us before August 31st 2015 and receive 25% off.
Mama Jen, (a long time client of mine) called me a while back and asked to book some time within the studio. Mama Jen is a writer, food blogger and a fierce mama of two boys. She has always been one of my favorite and most loyal clients. I’ve had the pleasure of documenting their family every year. I’ve watched them grow and in a way, they feel like a second family to me. This session however was going to be a little different, we would be missing one member of the family because the session would be for him, “I want to give their dad something special to hang in his office, something from the boys specifically,” she stated excitedly. So we exchanged ideas throughout a few back-and-forth phone calls until we had a solid outline of ideas and a date set for all of the magic to happen.
On the day of the shoot, the boys were like little sparklers, their energy was boundless. Luckily they took to our ideas immediately and were able to channel that energy into the activities that were set before them. The first idea- “make a sign for dad out of your legos, go!” The rest of that hour had pretty much the same theme applied, one of us would suggest, “let’s do it for dad,” and as soon as they heard “dad,” their energy soared, had purpose and the love beamed from them. It was obvious how much the boys loved, appreciated and cherished their father. It was sweet and fantastically creative of mom to think of it all and in the end, dad received a fathers day gift that he would never forget.
The moral?… Be sure to call your father today and be sure to always express your love and appreciation for him. If you’re feeling ambitious, make him something, out of papier-mâché and colored tissue. (lol, personal flashback to grade-school) It doesn’t matter how you choose to express, just do it. They deserve to know how much you appreciate them.
I wish everyone the best father’s day ever and a fantastic holiday weekend.
“The heart of a father is the masterpiece of nature.” -Antoine François Prévost
This year has definitely been a difficult one for me. I love what I do but sometimes the obstacles whistling past my ears are just too intolerable to ignore. There has been struggle within my art and within my business as of late. The first struggle being the absolute saturation of the photography business. Yep I said it, with cameras embedded in every phone and many buying the latest SLR at an affordable rate, it’s all making the business that much more main-stream. Not an impossible obstacle but it does make it harder for photographers to stand out and make a living. Pair that with some of my most recent business decisions and I was left with a one-way ticket down the B lane. What’s the B lane? Well that’s my way of expressing life when it suddenly becomes an absolute and intolerable B-itch. (It’s a nicer way of phrasing it I think). Yep, I was stuck in the B lane and while I did my best to remain positive, I knew I needed help. Life has always had a way of throwing some serious curve balls but it’s all in the choices we make that decides who we’ll be afterwards and how we’ll be along the way, right? Precisely. So for this round of cumbersome complications, I brought on my team of experts. I went to the people I trusted most, the ones that have been within my circle for years. For me, they are constant heroes, educators, spiritual leaders and most of all- they love to lift. There is a give and take that I have come to appreciate through them. They have become my home.
“The ache for home lives in all of us, the safe place where we can go as we are.”
So I called them in, my panel of spiritual experts and (I’m not gonna lie) there was often an activity involved. Nails were painted, glasses of wine were sipped, hikes embarked upon and countless sunsets were observed, all while discussing my current B lane strategy. I collected opinions, experiences and overall direction. The solution was unanimous and seemed simple enough- locate the problem and communicate it. If that doesn’t work then eradicate it. In this case, it involved an individual, who had demonstrated low levels of respect, trust and loyalty for me or my work ethic. Eradicate the problem?… Rrrrright. Easier said then done. Needless to say there were a few slow crawls out of bed in those months. There was some wandering, more questioning, some dread and a few more fear-based decisions before I finally did it. I took a stand. I chose me and though it was hard, it was completely refreshing. Sometimes, we learn the hard way.
A few nutshells- Over the years, I have learned that If there is a regular routine of disrespect, it’s a deal-breaker for me. I try to give every way I know how- through teaching others, communicating, celebrating those around me, sharing my photography, reaching out to charities and listening to those I love as much as possible but if it isn’t mutual, it’s a deal-breaker. There are those who consistently take without giving and receive praise without ever feeling the need to pay it forward. It will never matter what you say, they will always believe whatever it is that serves them best. I mourn for them but I must move on, continue to create, learn the hard way and then cut the problem off sooner next time. Forgive but never forget.
Nutshell #2, (and this is where it gets fun) after all of this drama has surfaced and the lessons have been learned… get the hell out of the house! 1. Find a beach. 2. Make a time-lapse. 3. Celebrate those who love you most. In other words- heal, in the bestest, most creative way you know how and share your story cause It’s all downhill from here. This is where you get off, It’s finally time to exit the B lane.
“Where you invest your love, you invest your life.” – Mumford & Sons