We had the good fortune of connecting with Jacque Shipman and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Jacque, how do you think about risk?
I believe that risk taking is absolutely necessary if you want to be successful and if you want to grow. For the longest time, I was so afraid to make “risky” decisions for so many different reasons, occasionally because of opinions of others, sometimes because of time restraints, but most often because of money or just flat out… fear. I went through a horrible relationship and once out of that relationship, I hit a wall. I faced myself for the first time in my whole life. I decided I really wanted to live up to my potential, and I wanted to take risks because I have been taught to always play on the safe side of the street and it hadn’t gotten me as far. My business was successful but it was time I took a major jump to kickstart an even bigger path for myself and to re-inspire my creativity. Within’ 6 months, I broke up with a horrible boyfriend, quit my dead-end day job, took my photography passion completely full time, and ditched the town I’d been in my entire life to move to Arizona, where I had no family, no friends, and no income… BUT somehow, deep down, I just figured it would work out. I accepted potential failures in my head before they even happened but kept striving for success, and somehow someway, my business continued to grow and scale, even a state away. Suddenly my dreams as a little girl of traveling more, became a reality. Suddenly my dreams of working for myself, a reality, Suddenly my dreams of becoming an admirable mentor to other people, within reach. Suddenly, my creativity was back. All because I took one little step and one big risk.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
My personal brand is focused around a specific type of person, my “niche” are cowboy couples and people that love the western lifestyle. When I think of hiring a photographer, I always hope that person would understand the things I love, and actually enjoy attending my wedding, I would also seek someone that understands my style and taste for the absolute best photographs. So I decided to seek out clientele that was similar to me, and I’ll tell you I enjoy my job so much more because of my choice to do that. I care so much about my clients, and by nature, I am a people pleaser, but I want my clients to feel completely and absolutely safe to be themselves with me, to be playful and goofy, and truly enjoy that time with me. I focus on documenting wedding days and love stories, and tend to pull away from anything that feels inauthentic, every laugh in every photograph of mine, was a REAL laugh.
I got to where I am professionally with lots of work. I was working a 40 hour a week day job and working on my photography side hustle every chance I got after work and on weekends. I had no personal time for over a year. I didn’t make a dime for over a year. It went back into my education with courses, mentorships, and upgrading my gear to provide the absolute best experience for my future clients. It was not an easy path – it was very difficult, but also so rewarding and enjoyable along the way. I’m full time now, but I am still growing every single day, and have so many continued goals to scale and meet more amazing people.
I want people to know that I have a good heart and I take the time to get to know you – life is short and at the end of the day I don’t do what I do for the money, I do it because for the first time in my whole life, I feel appreciated and I work with incredible people.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
I LOVE THIS! I am brand new to Arizona and my best friend from Boston is already considering coming down for a visit.
I would absolutely go to Sedona first and camp for a day or two and hit up ANY of the restaurants right in town, they are all so incredible for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. I would take her on a jeep tour to the Sedona portals. These spiritual places encouraged me to move here.
Next, we would visit old town in Scottsdale, and enjoy the nightlife and clubs. She would love the music and social environment, one of my favorite spots in old town in the Rusty Spur, its such a sweet quaint little bar and I have met really cool people in there.
Next, I would take her swing dancing at some of the country bars in Gilbert, including Denim & Diamonds, and Whiskey Row. These locations are prime for good country music and swing dancing.
Next, we would take a trip to Prescott or Cave Creek for the rodeos and go see the bull riding at Buffalo Chip.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I tear up as I write this, just because I kind of always hoped that someone would ask me this so I could share and love on this person, because I couldn’t have done it without her friendship.
My dear talented photographer friend Ashleigh, she lives in Reno/Tahoe where I’m from, who I bizarrely met at my old day job, somehow became friends with, and figured out that I was neighbors with… truly believed in me so much more than anyone else did, and encouraged my path so much, and still does.
She handed over my first “professional” grade camera so I could begin to shoot weddings and practice more, she gave me financial freedom and flexibility by allowing me to make payments to her for this camera when I couldn’t get approved for a best buy card.
She gifted me lots of lenses, GIFTED. I don’t deserve her.
She checked in with me constantly. Listened to my growing pains and understanding editing and provided connections for me with incredible women and other people who are now helping me survive in Arizona.
And so so much more.
I love you Ash, your friendship and faith in the lord inspires me everyday and I promise to pass it down!
Other: Wedding Wire: https://www.weddingwire.com/biz/jacque-o-photography/64e8fd755cb3a5ce.html The knot: https://www.theknot.com/marketplace/jacque-o-photography-dayton-nv-2030069 Google: Jacque O Photography
Arika & Joels Elopement I was booked through The Hytch Reno www.thehytch.com