A little pre-story: Jess and I met through a photoshoot. Her work caught my eyes and initially I was grabbed by the style she shoots and the aesthetic senses overflowing through her images, whether it’d be fashion, portraits or landscapes. A great photographer shoots with his/her heart and soul. I find it is especially true with Jess. Working with Jess is a great pleasure as she is responsible, reliable, humble, and skilful at a young age. Jess’s interview helps me peel some layers off the photography industry and most importantly her persistence following her passion and dream. When you love what you do and do what you love, you never work for a day.
1. Tell us about yourself
I’m a 23 year old photographer who spent 10 years in Queensland before making the move back to Melbourne where I am based now. I shoot for fashion brands and advertising clients, but find a nice balance by shooting landscapes and documentary work for myself. Some of my favourite things I’ve done is adventure through Egypt, visit the amazing city of St. Petersburg in Russia, and wander through Monet’s Garden in France. All these experiences have shaped my work’s aesthetic and continue to inspire my passion for photography.
2. Tell us something that you are most proud of
I think most of all I’m proudest of my persistence. I’ve seen my images blown up on billboards and printed in the pages of magazines – but I haven’t even skimmed the surface of my big-time goals, so until then it’s just a matter of keeping at it.
3. Can you tell us about a major obstacle at a certain stage in your life and how you conquered it?
One of the hardest obstacles I’ve encountered was realising that if I stayed in the beach town where I grew up I wouldn’t be able to work as a photographer. I drove across the country at 18 with my sister, a few bags of clothes, a guitar and my camera. I left behind a beautiful family and I think being away from them is the hardest part. I try conquering it by visiting as often as I can and making sure I don’t miss graduations and birthdays.
4. If you could give a piece of advice to yourself 5-10 years ago, what would you say?
I would say forget everyone else and what they want you to be, you will leave them all behind you.
5. Your piece of advice to other women…
It’s somewhat a piece of Australian culture to tear down successful people. I’ve found that as a nation, we don’t like to see people achieving something we have not achieved ourselves. My advice would be to always rejoice in other women’s success.