Get To Know Jen Basford
Hi, I'm Jen.
I never accept anything at face value, and I don’t believe in doing things simply because ‘that’s the way they’ve always been done.’
My favorite question is “Why?” followed closely with “Why not?”
I want to live in a world where the underdog wins and we celebrate their victory. Where all humans have rights, and every person lives their life with purpose in the manner they choose.
I seek adventure, and never shy away from failure. I despise boundaries, rules, routine and conforming to others’ expectations. And I am constantly challenging the limits in every aspect of my life.
I refuse to follow the crowd. The stories I tell are authentic.
But don’t apologize for being who you are.”
I wanted to be an astronaut (true story).
I’m a self-proclaimed nerd who spent my formative years doing what I was ‘supposed to.’ I graduated 2nd in my class from high school (don’t ask – I don’t wanna talk about it), and headed off to college with the dream of becoming an astronaut (thank you, Space Camp).
Two weeks later I had changed my major (something I got quite good at over the next several years), eventually graduating with a degree in Letters (basically, I’m great conversation at a cocktail party). Then I proceeded to do what any good overachiever does who is delaying reality – I got a Master’s degree.
I accepted a position with the world’s largest consulting firm and for the next 5 years lived the fast-paced life of nonstop caffeine, weekly travel, 80+ hour workweeks, embassy parties in Washington and happy hours at 5 star restaurants complete with co-workers in suits and ties.
Somewhere along the way I lost sight of who I was, or perhaps I never really knew. But I was miserable. Good students were supposed to go to college and get ‘smart people’ jobs and do ‘smart people’ things. But that wasn’t me. And I didn’t want to wake up one day and realize that I’d never made an impact on anyone’s life, done something meaningful or made a difference in the world (no matter how small).
I didn’t become a photographer because it was something I was ‘passionate’ about, and I don’t take pictures just to ‘capture moments.’ My camera can do that just fine with anyone at the helm.
Photography started out as all projects do for me; by immersing myself in every bit of education and experience I possibly could in order to completely master it. Or, put simply, a lot of failures that got chalked up as ‘learning things the hard way’ and ‘character building’ in hindsight. Fortunately for me, the stubbornness of my early childhood finally earned its merit.
Along the way I learned more about the quick-witted (at least in my head), adventure-seeking, travel-loving, Free People girl who (as it turns out) loves tattoos. The girl who loves Hendricks and hates scotch (sorry, Brian). Who is obsessed with Wildfox marketing campaigns and everything to do with design. Who owns more fonts than the number of people who get lost in Ikea each year. Who refuses to show up early to the airport yet always manages to slide into her seat just in time to order a cocktail before takeoff. Who has a 2-degree window of happiness (70-72 degrees) and hates anything to do with camping. Who hates schedules and sometimes forgets her kids at school (I still owe Dash One a pony). Who loves the ocean but hates sand. And who wouldn’t run unless a bear were chasing her (oh let’s be honest, I’d just let him get it over with quick).
My camera is simply a tool that I use to bring stories to life.
Behind the scenes from a recent fashion editorial in Venice Beach.
Video by the incredible Katherine Mendieta.
PRESS AND SPEAKER BIO
Jen is seen as both a leader and an innovator when it comes to business, and her studio is one of the top senior portrait studios in the nation. She is best known for her modern storytelling senior portraits; the highly profitable and successful senior model program she pioneered; her expertise in the areas of pricing, sales, fashion, and marketing; and her out-of-the-box approach to marketing and business relationships.
Jen is one of the founders and owners of the Unconventional Creative (a community dedicated to creative entrepreneurs and their side hustles), UNDISCOVERED (the online influencer platform for the new generation of dreamers and disruptors), Seniors Ignite (an organization dedicated to providing the highest level of education to the new generation of photography innovators), and be.mydo (web design products and services for creatives).
PRESS | PUBLICATION | SPEAKING
Jen has been a platform speaker for some of the photography industry’s most prestigious events, and has spoken at numerous state and regional events and workshops.
She is also an internationally published author and photographer for numerous publications and organizations.
These are a few of the places that Jen has been featured:
... to 3 girls photography
Enter into our world of the unconventional. Where we celebrate the freedom of those who don’t fit into a proverbial box.
Maybe you’re here because you want truly incredible senior portraits. And while I can guarantee that your images will be incredible, they most definitely will not look like ‘senior pictures.’
My role is not to simply document this milestone to prove you made it out alive (which is, however, cause for celebration). And it isn’t to create a ‘perfect image’ to present to the world.
My role is to bring your story to life in the most authentic way possible. For the truly extraordinary, there is no other option.
It’s time to show the world your true self.
If this is you, then you’ve come to the right place.