Serendipity (NOUN): A Fortunate Happenstance
Jen Wheeler picked up a camera in grade school, and proceeded to force her sisters to dress up and model for her "photo studio," which usually consisted of a piece of tagboard taped to a wall. After many years, and after a stint in corporate America, actual clients began to request her portrait services. She specialized in weddings for several years, while nurturing a passion for the one-on-one, fine art nature of boudoir photography. As brides and portrait clients became boudoir clients, Jen realized a desire to shift her specialty to boudoir photography. She launched "Show Me Beautiful," a division of her main studio (Serendipity Photography) in 2005.
Jen draws inspiration from the curves, light, and shadows found in nature, and from dramatic "Old Hollywood" portraiture. She has a gift for seeing beauty, especially in places where others don't see it. She uses this gift, along with her degree in psychology, to connect with women on a level that goes deeper than just taking photos, with the result being portraits that truly "show you beautiful."
Along with running the photo studio, Jen keeps busy with two kids in middle school, and as many rescued pets as her husband will allow. She enjoys road trips with no destination, painting, cooking, and napping, and bingeing on Netflix.
Learning from another woman's experiences can be incredibly valuable. One way to do so is to spend time reflecting on what you've heard. Some choose to do this through journaling, others through meditation, and still others choose to discuss topics with their friends and acquaintances. Regardless of your preferred method of reflection, I'd encourage you to think about some key messages from Jen's episode.
- How much of your physical routine is for you versus for others? Jen spoke about the change in her clientele and the way that women are increasingly taking boudoir photos for themselves, versus for someone else. How much of your own physical routine and appearance is for you, and how much is to please others? Are there changes you can make to bring them more in line?
- Do you trust yourself to do what comes naturally? Jen spoke about women's ability to do what comes naturally to them, and that, many times, that is exactly the right thing to do. Great outcomes happen when we trust our natural gifts and instinct. Is this something you do? What are your natural gifts and instincts? Are there areas where you're more / less confident in trusting them? Why is that?
- Where are you in your journey? Jen was very open about the path her career has taken and that she is still evolving and getting better. One poignant thing she said is that you're already right where you're supposed to be right now. What challenges have you already overcome to get where you are? What is right about your current situation? What are your goals for the future to keep learning, growing, and evolving?