Chase Jarvis Sits Down With Jasmine Star

Chase Jarvis has started a really cool idea called Creative Live in which he gives back helpful information to other creative individuals. In this video Chase sits down with Jasmine Star who is one of the top wedding photographers in the business. I first came across Jasmine through David Jay and instantly fell in love with her. I love how they express their frustrations with living a typical 9 to 5 lifestyle and how professional photography allowed them to live the life they wanted to live. Just like them, I too went to school for something compeletely opposite of photography, and it was conversations like this that eventually lead me to change my career path to become the photographer I am today.

Chase says it really well when he says, "There is no prescription for how you get to become a photographer." This video is not about fstoppers and shutterspeeds but rather about how to take control of your life and your passions and turn them into a business. I know wedding photography often gets a bad wrap but through wedding photography, I have been able to support myself financially every weekend and still have time to pursue other fields of photography during the week. Jasmine Star's story is about as good as it gets, and it's inspiring to hear her share her success story with everyone so candidly. I hope you guys enjoy this video as much as I have and I'm only half way through it!

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20 Comments

This interview is well worth taking the time to watch/listen!

Thanks for taking the time to do this @ChaseJarvis & @JasmineStar.

@ChaseJarvis brush up on your interview skill before your next session.

BBBbooooooo....

I watched Jasmine saying that she was very poor, broke etc in Vegas at Skip's Sumer school. Now she is saying that THEY FLEW EVERYONE TO HAWAII for her wedding and hiring a top photographer who charges lots of money... Does not add up guys. Sorry :-(

Lee Morris's picture

I don't know much about her but as a wedding photographer myself I have seen some very poor couples have very extravagant weddings because it's not their money :)

Chase, you are da man!

A good watch if you have the time. I really wish they could have done SOMETHING about the audio though. it was very distracting.

Sooooo... doctors and lawyers make good photographers. Good to know.

Patrick Hall's picture

I remember hearing David Jay (her own wedding photographer and mentor) say that he once got a bride to spend 90% of her wedding budget on the photography; which he hinted at her budget was 12 grand I think. Brides do some crazy things sometimes but if that's your business model to each their own.

I don't know why the Booos, are you making <$160,000 a year working only 23 days a year Fukr? We try to feature all types of photography so please show some respect to Jasmine.

Awesome clip. I've fallen in love with Jasmine and her approach to photography ever since watching the Creative Live webinar about two weeks or so ago

I watched her live event and she explained that she could not afford david jay but he agreed to shoot her wedding for free if he got to pick the day. I am assuming they flew him out to Hawaii but they agreed to let him pick the day which was a Wednesday and he basically did it for nothing.

Anyways. I found her beyond obnoxious by the end of her creativelive event. I did appreciate her being there though and i did learn some things from watching it. You don't have to like her to see why she is doing so well.

What she does really really well has nothing to do with her camera. She has mastered the art of branding and marketing herself. At one point she said that 9 out of the 10 shots she has published in magazines come from her husband/second shooter. After seeing the results of the wedding they did i found i was a lot more impressed with the pictures he took vs the ones she took, and i sat there thinking how can she be this successful if her pictures aren't even that amazing compared to her second shooters. To me it would seem more like he should be the main shooter because his results seem to be better, but with the popularity of her blog and what not it would be stupid to downplay the importance of having a face with personality up front bringing in clients.

My opinion as an armchair quarterback is that the best thing to be taken out of her video is the importance of building your brand, she is thriving because people are attracted to her story and her looks and her personality. I would be much more likely to watch her do a marketing seminar than a photography one in the future.

This was such an inspiring video!!! Loooong, but inspiring. Chase you are a charmer, but Jasmine's honesty, laughter and beauty were the true eye candy:) Thank you for posting this. Very inspiring!

Yep I watched all 5 days, plus the CJLive...I found it quite good. I always like to peer into how people work. I find it fascinating. Probably why I like Fstoppers so much.

I completely agree with Dan. I wasn't aware of Jasmine Star before seeing this. I took a look at her blog and I have to say that I was pretty underwhelmed. I don't know which of the shots are hers and which are her husband's, but there are a lot of compositions that are poor or even completely off. I'm not a someone who thinks that you have to compose by strict rules, but a lot of the pictures on her blog, while they are correctly exposed and nicely post-processed, just plain don't work. She's obviously extremely good at connecting with people and probably especially brides, and at marketing herself. The blog itself is a somewhat impressive piece of web design. I still don't think I'd want to pay 7000+ bucks for wedding pictures like that.

Yeah. My wife and I actually downloaded the whole event on creative live for the $99 discount. We are big fans of Jasmine Star because we are Portrait and Wedding Photogs. We actually got to take a pic with her and JD when they came to Seattle for the WPPI Roadshow. And we are considered to be the newbies so she has taught us alot. And @Dan. If you were taking notes during the creative live. She pretty much did her marketing seminar during the first day or two. There's not very much to it in all actuality. You just have to be on top of the social networking game and be able to create conversation about yourself even when you're not around...

I watched the live event and the post event talks that she did and I have to say that she deserves a huge credit, to open up her entire business/craft for scrutiny like that takes a lot of nerve, I couldn't do it, even if I was the best in the world at my craft. I agree with what some people say about her photos not always being technically perfect etc. However, for me personally, I think that technical photography expertise is only a small part of the huge variety of skills that a successful wedding photographer should have (within reason). I personally would be more annoyed if I had a wedding photographer that took amazingly perfect text book pics but was a total arse and tainted my once in a lifetime day, rather than having someone with excellent people and organisational skills that didn't quite frame a shot right, or made some other technical errors but fitted in with the friends and family, capturing the moments of the day as they happened and not artificially creating perfect but soulless shots. Most of the time, when wedding photos are viewed, they are viewed as triggers to emotions and memories that we already have because we where there, they are not meant to be solely viewed in a clinical and critical way, those technical imperfections may be part of the very essence that really captures the life and soul of the people and the day, in my opinion.

Regarding the comment about JD taking the principal shooting role, I agree that he has arguably taken some of the best shots, however, maybe he has taken them because he is the second shooter, which gives him a more relaxed environment to work in. Perhaps if he was the first shooter and was worrying about all the other aspects that a first shooter needs to worry about then none of those shots may have ever happened.

Personally to me, regardless of any imperfections in their final shots, I have a massive amount of respect for them both. Not only for for building a successful business but for sharing their techniques and behind the scenes access in a way that breaks the all too familiar trend of secrecy and snobbery that is often found within the elite of any business or craft. Which to me seems to be what fstoppers is all about, so we should all be able to appreciate that!

Couldn´t understand a word of what she´s saying. Why did she speak so fast? Please Mrs. Star give the non-native english listeners a chance to listen and understand. It was also the same on the Creative Live event. :-(

I am in the midst of watching the downloads. I'm on day 4. I also watched the interview posted above. Here's my take:

Jasmine Star herself says you don't have to like her. She'd prefer people either love her or hate her. She allowed herself to be completely vulnerable and show how she works and be open to our critiques. In my view, she is a good photographer. Many watching her feel they are much better photographers than she. And I'm sure it's true for some. But she is also incredibly successful. I believe she stated she is booked solid for 2011 already. How many of you that feel you are a better photographer are booked throughout next year? Some perhaps. Most not. I don't have a single thing booked past October of THIS year. The point is, she knows how to market herself. There are a LOT of bad photographers (and no I'm not at all saying she is bad) making a LOT of money. The lesson to be learned here is how to promote our business and she did an amazing job at that. I walked away from this saying, "If Jasmine Star, who didn't even own a camera prior to 2006 can do this, I can do this too." Like her or not, she is the model of success.

@zoeboy Don't worry if you can't understand what she's saying...it seems to be what she looks like and what she feels like is what earns her money!

Patrick Hall's picture

Great point Angus. There is always going to be resistance when someone is telling a photographer that to be successful it isn't really about the photographs. It's 100% true though. Wedding clients are so different from commercial clients and to a bride, having a personable photographer that they can treat more like a guest or friend than a vendor is much more valuable than taking national geographic style images. As a wedding photographer myself, Jasmine encouraged me and reminded me what I already know in this business. I'm afraid a lot of the negative comments on here are from people who can't see the forest for the trees or have a deep down bitterness towards her success. I wish other weddings pros could get past those feelings and embrace what Mrs. Star is staying but unfortunately that will probably never be the case.

Jasmine makes way too many insecure people jealous. She does incredible work and the proof is in the pudding - she books and books and books.