As an intimate wedding photographer in New England, I take my social responsibility as a member of the community very seriously. No one lives in a bubble, and as a small business owner the gravity of that statement rings true for me each and every day. I know that now more than ever people want to know what the values are of the businesses they are supporting with their dollars, which is why I've decided to lay it out as clear as day on this page.
Below, you'll find these major social responsibility categories with descriptions of I incorporate their principles into my life and business so that you can rest assured that when you hire me as your wedding photographer, you aren't just hiring a competent professional - you're also making a sound investment into the values that you want to support to build the kind of world you want to live in.
For me, it is fundamental that every human on the planet is entitled to access the same kinds of life experiences that any other human on the planet may have access to: education, work, personal, and recreation. This is why I will always fight for equal rights for all and I will do what I am able to in dismantling systemic oppression of the disenfranchised. For me, true equality and freedom of life in society is not strictly a BLM, LGBTQ, or even a classist issue; this is a deep rooted, intersectional issue that crisscrosses multiple lines of color, class, gender identity and sexual orientation. Of particular interest as a wedding photographer, I will always support and fight for LGBTQ marriage equality and I am also an ENM photographer and supporter. All love is beautiful. ❤
In my business, I try hard to ensure that the vendors I recommend to clients, as well as the ones I directly work with to provide my service, support values of inclusivity and equality. If and when I uncover that these values are being betrayed by a vendor I take action to discontinue my use of their service, or if it is the case I will cease recommending them to clients.
The natural world has always played an important role in my life. I grew up with my back yard as the trailhead for miles of conservation trails in my county, and my grandfather was a farmer who worked for the New Hampshire State Forestry Department. I attended 12 years of YMCA camp and an Outward Bound leadership excursion on the Appalachian Trail where I learned various wilderness techniques that would help me enjoy being in nature without creating lasting harm. Appreciation for and protection of our natural world has been a core value of mine from a time before I can remember. Today, I apply this value in both my business and my personal life.
As a photographer, I have become a Leave No Trace Aware Photographer, which is a course developed by leading elopement photographers and the Leave No Trace program to help educate photographers on the importance of minimizing their impact on the natural world and how to work with clients toward that aim while continuing to provide top-level service and amazing imagery.
As a private individual, I take so many small steps toward sustainability in my life. Many people understand the three R's (reduce, reuse, recycle), but not many actually understand that the most important are the first two. I try to minimize the number of items I bring into my home & life, and I upcycle and reuse as much as I can. Our home, which is also my main place of work, has recently been converted to full solar power and both of the family vehicles are hybrids, with the main vehicle being primarily electric, all of this to cut down on our use of fossil fuels.
Respect for Faith
I personally do not follow any particular faith and can be best described as a curious agnostic. I love to make a study of the world's faiths and I find beauty and wonder in each of them. The religion I have found that resonates the most with my personal practices of meditation and spirituality is Shinto, though I am not a true practitioner.
What I love most about being unattached to a religion but having a deep love for its study is the way it allows me to appreciate the way love can be expressed through faith (and vice versa) during a wedding. I truly feel that my respect for the world's faiths has helped me be a better wedding photographer because I can be equally as moved by a washing of the hands as by a stomping of the glass as by a pagan handfasting. To me, they are all beautiful rituals that are part of what makes your love story special and contribute to the greater fabric of our world.
As a small business owner, it's important for me to recognize my role in the community. My business is young still, so I am not necessarily an established community figure in my city, but that doesn't mean I cannot make an impact.
Within the photography and wedding industries and as a former arts administrator & curator, I work hard to foster a community of supportive creative professionals who strive to lift each other up and advocate for ethical business practices. My goal is always to help my fellow professionals succeed and create a welcoming, informed, and positive community that will drive those within it toward the personal and business growth they desire.
As a solopreneur, I have a very keen appreciation for the support I receive from my community - monetarily and otherwise. I do my best to support small and local businesses whenever I can in whichever way I can, but most particularly by shopping small as often as I can. Large, corporate retail has quite taken over our economy, with the likes of Amazon and Wal-Mart dominating, and I have sworn off shopping at these two companies specifically for anything, ever, with my last purchase from one of them being in early 2019. It is important to me that the companies and small businesses I shop with be a place that I could see myself wanting to be at as a worker, where workers are paid above minimum wage, and where I know my money is supporting the same values that I hold dear.