Monthly Archives

June 2015

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Kelli Benke | Chicago Maternity Photography

First off, let me say that I have fallen crazy in love with new moms. This is my second maternity session and seeing as though I’m someone who typically shoots models and children, I wasn’t exactly prepared to tear up at the sight of a parent to be. Nothing, and I mean nothing can put a smile on my face faster than a mother who has fallen in love with a human being that she hasn’t seen yet.

I’d like to introduce to you all the maternity session of Kelli and George, who are expecting their baby boy very soon. Continue Reading

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A Day In the Life Of What He Wears

John Costakis is quickly migrating to the top of everyone’s to watch list. With his magnetic personality and his stellar style of dress, it’s kind of hard not to be interested. John will be launching his style blog What He Wears later this year so he’s been working nonstop shooting long days. Well, guess what lucky little photographer got to follow him for his latest headshot session with More Light Photography? 

A Day in The Life:
What He Wears

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The breeze hits the pressed lapels of his suit as he steps out of his Buick. The only sound that can be heard is the click of the 3-inch heels on my thrift store flats. Todd, the owner of MLP (Not to be confused with My Little Pony) , is in the distance chattering about the cafe we’re about to enter. He’s telling us that it’s good but he’s kind of shrugging it off. That’s Todd’s style.

 

The first thing I notice when we walk into  The Temple is how vintage it felt. Not like I-was-cool-before-cool-was-cool but actual vintage. It smells like homemade brownies with a hint of those little candies you find at the bottom of your grandparents’ purse. Older seniors are having a guitar practice in a separate room of the cafe. It’s nothing like anything you’ll see in the city.

 

 

There’s fun little knick knacks all across the store. The owners clearly have a sense of humor. (They also play pinball) Then, there’s coffee flavored ice cream that John orders. He pays with his card and his watch’s accents shine so bright they may blind me. It’s not your average scene.

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Shortly after that, Todd, Ray (My assistant), and John started making their way over to the studio where John was about to have the second half of his shoot. I hung back simply to watch as John walked in his suit.. I’m an admirer of walks, ways, and mannerisms. It was only then that I noticed that John always walked like he had a mission to fulfil.

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Yet, he stopped and offered me a bite of his coffee flavored ice cream. I thought that was such a gentlemen-like thing to do.

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When we arrived back at the More Light Photography’s Studio, John took a moment to freshen up while Todd set up. The look on John’s face as he prepared himself to stand in front an entire studio setup was one I’ll never forget… It was determination. 

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Showtime

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A Little fun fact about More Light Photography:

Todd bought this amazingly stunning building and is literally creating the dream studio. Each room in the building has a different look, and I fell in love with it. Two floors of creative and unbelievable goodness, Todd took the time out of his busy schedule of creating a masterpiece to create… well… A masterpiece.

 

The lights go out and you hear this loud sound. It’s a lighting arrangement the size of three people turning on. John adjusts his tie one more time before he goes into full “what he wears” mode. For the next twenty minutes, there’s back and forth between Todd and John. There’s simple one word commands that are catered to immediately. I’m impressed as I see Todd come back and forth to adjust lights and small details. Anyone who tells you studio work is easy is lying. I’ve never seen anything like this. I’m stunned but I’m also taking pictures from behind John where beams of lights are consistently going off in my eyes so.. That may have been what blew my mind.

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Todd then stops shooting and does something I’ve not seen photographers do in years. He allowed John to pull up a chair and view his photos. Together, they mutter as they address each other about what works with the shots and what doesn’t. Todd truly collaborates and connects with his clients. Visually, I take notes. I’m letting it all sink in. Thinking to myself, this is what a real collaboration looks like. John remains focused as I swarm about the duo capturing their viewing session. I watch as Todd points to little things and John nods profusely. He’s a professional. He’s used to the little things. More Light Photography- Jasemine Denise Photography-9

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After the shoot is over, the men shake hands. The day is done and pretty soon, John is back in his Buick and on his way home. As I close my camera lens, extend my gratitude to Todd for letting me sit in, and start heading home, I smile to myself. This is what I fell in love with and I just got to witness it all.

What do You Think!?

Want to see how his headshots came out? I guess you’d better tell Todd over at More Light Photography that you can’t get enough of What He Wears! In the meantime, you can do one of two awesome things!

 

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Lighten Up: 101 songs – Girl Power Playlist

Can you remember a day when you just felt power radiating out of your pores? I’m talking about that time you posted that Instagram selfie with no makeup and no filter? Or that time you finished a whole XL pizza. (That’s powerful!) When was the last time you truly felt the power? For me, it was the first time I ever saw Taraji P. Henson portray the role of Lauren in the movie Think Like A Man (which is actually based of the Steve Harvey book Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Man, a really great book!). Her character was strong, independent, motivated an eventually found the man of her dreams. For my lovely lady friends, it was our last boudoir session.

For you, I wanted to drop a little extra smile and power into your day… so I decided to make

The JDP Girl Power Playlist!

101 songs to be your own best friend, girlfriend, and motivator too. Wait, there’s more; Not every single song is a Beyonce song! Yeah, that’s right. I had to dig deep for this one. You need girl power everyday so when you’re feeling under-fueled… Bookmark this page and come back. Don’t worry. It aint going nowhere!

Without further wait, 101 songs to shine your girl power. In alphabetical order (Because yeah. I need that.) Fun Fact: I tried to give this playlist as little man hating as possible. I don’t believe in empowering yourself by breaking down men. Only dancing with your pants off as much as possible. I put asterisks byt the ones who are exceptions.

 

Against The World – Machine Gun Kelly

All about That Bass – Meghan Trainor

Anything But Ordinary – Avril Lavigne

Bad Girls- MIA

Bad Reputation – Joan Jett

Be A Heartbreaker – Justin Guarini*

The best Damn Thing – Avril Lavigne

Bitch Better Have My Money – Rihanna

Bo$$- Fifth Harmony

Boss Ass bitch – Kelis

Bow Down – Beyonce

Call me When You’re Sober- Evanescence*

Can’t Hold Us Down (Feat. Lil’ Kim)

Cockiness (Love It) -Rihanna

Diamonds and Gold – Mac Miller

Diva – Beyonce

Do It Like A Dude- Jessie J

Do Your Thing – *Nsync

Donald Trump (Mac Miller cover) – Neon Hitch

Don’t Give Up – Pink / John Legend

Ego Remix Ft. Kanye West – Beyonce

Everybody Wants to Rule The World- Lorde

Extraordinary – Mandy Moore

Fancy – Iggy Azalea

Feelin Myself (Ft. Beyonce) – Nicki Minaj

Fighter – Christina Aguilera

Fingerprints – Katy Perry

Flawless (Remix) – Beyonce

F*CK You Better – Neon Hitch*

F*cked my way to the top – Lana Del Ray

Gardenia – Mandy More

Get it While You Can – Janis Joplin

Get Your Money Up – Keri Hilson

Glamourous- Fergie

Go Hard- Nicki Minaj

God Gave Me Patience- Tristan Prettyman

Hard Out Here- Lily Allen

Hell Wit Ya * -P!NK

Here We Go – Mac Miller

How to Be A Heartbreaker – Marina and the Diamonds *

I am Light – India Arie

I Am Me- Willow Smith

I Don’t Care, I Love It* – Icona Pop

I Feel Free- Nicki Minaj

If you Seek Amy – Britney Spears

Independent Women – Destiny’s Child

[Intro] Stronger Than Me – Amy Winehouse

Keep Ya Head Up (2pac cover) – Jhene Aiko

Knock Knock – Mac Miller (This one’s just fun!)

Lady Marmalade – P!NK, Christina, Maya, Lil Kim*

Leave Me Alone * – P!NK

Live Free – Mac Miller

Lolita – Lana Del Rey

Love, Money, Party – Miley Cyrus

M!ssundaztood – P!NK

Maneater – Nelly Furtado

Make Me Proud-Drake

Miss Independent – NeYo

Moment 4 Life (Featuring Drake) Nicki Minaj

My Prerogative- Britney Spears

My World- Avril Lavigne

Now I’m that Bitch – Livvi Franc*

 Part of Me- Katy Perry

Piece of Me- Britney Spears

Playa Boi- Cher Lloyd*

Poison- Bell Biv Devoe

Pour It Up – Rihanna

Power and Control – Marina and The Diamonds

Pretty Girl Rock – Keri Hilson

Private Party – India Arie

Problem- Natalia Kills

Promises- Jhene aiko

Pumpkin soup-Kate Nash

Q.U.E.E.N (featuring Erykah Badu) – Janelle Monae

Reflection – Fifth Harmony

The Remedy[I Won’t Worry]- Jason Mraz

Roar- Katy Perry

Royals – Lorde

Run The World (Girls)-Beyonce

Shake It out – Florence & The Machine

Sleazy- Ke$ha

So What? – P!NK

Spotless Mind-Jhene aiko

Started from The Bottom -Drake

Strength, Courage, & Wisdom – India Arie

Stronger-Britney Spears

Stronger (What Doesn’t Kill You) – Kelly Clarkson

Survivor – Destiny’s Child

Them Girls Be Like – Fifth Harmony

This is How We Do- Katy Perry

This Too Shall Pass- India Arie

Unstoppable – Kat DeLuna

Vanity- Christina Aguilera

W.A.Y.S- Jhene Aiko

Warrior – Demi Lovato

Who am I Living For? – Katy Perry

Who You are- Jessie J

Wide Awake – Katy Perry

Woman’s Worth- Alicia Keyz*

Won’t Play The Game – Jhene Aiko

Work – Iggy Azalea

There you have it ladies, 101 songs to wake up to! Hopefully this motivates you to get out there wearing your best shoes and being a boss! See you next time, and LIGHTEN UP!

 

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What He Wears #1: Suit Up – Menswear Fashion

Welcome to the new section of JDcom called What He Wears. This is literally a countdown to the moment when John, who you’ve already have seen shirtless here launches his new menswear fashion blog and you get the first taste! You’ve seen me in all my fashionable glory but now, someone’s showing me how it’s done. (Dear Future Husband, take notes.)

How To Own a Suit.

Step One: (After the obvious, have a suit). Make an Entrance.

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If you’re going to come dressed up to the nines (*hums Suit and Tie by Justin Timberlake), then you’re going to have to walk the part just as much as you wear it. As you step out, step one foot at a time. Each step will command the focus of others onto your presence. It’s simply how you own a room.

Step #2: Check yourself.

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Check every bit of your clothes to assure you came dressed to impress regardless of who’s watching.

Step #3: When in doubt, ask John Costakis. 

So, what is he wearing?

This outfit was put together as a tribute to the spring.

Outfit Breakdown

Light Tan Linen Suit – H&M
Pocket Square- H&M
Zara Brush Leather Loafers/Slippers
JBW Watch– Gold rectangle bezel
Bracelets – Aldo
Rayban Gold Caravan Sunglasses – Green tint

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Coming Up Next!

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Watch John Costakis channel his inner Indiana Jones in the next “What he Wears.” In the meantime, wanna keep up with what John wears?  Follow his Instagram for more looks and his daily antics! 

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Fan Friday: Top 5 Handmade Artists

I am a lover of all authentically unique things. Unique stuff that’s extremely hard to find. I have this super awesome street sign on my wall that says “Argh Nasty!”, one of my favorite quotes from the TV show Buffy The Vampire Slayer. I have a fitted custom made hat from Detroit with all the signatures of the artists of Strange Music on it. Hell, I have a bottle of tequila without a worm at the bottom but instead there’s an accidental lady bug at the bottom. True story! I’m a lover of all unique things and this Fan Friday I’m sharing something extremely unique with you: My Top 5 Handmade Artists, and yes they come with both photos and links!

Top 5 Handmade Artists:

Note: These are in absolutely no particular order:

#5 Heavy Horns: My go To for Battle Jackets and Patches

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I wrote a blog about my amazing jacket from Spencer a while back. I met him at Anime Central, three years ago and fell in love with his style. He wearing a completely studded out jacket and I was instantly in love. Anyway, leaps and bounds later he started an establishment called Heavy Horns. Do you need to stud, spike, and patch your vest up? This man is literally your one stop shop for all of it. He’s a beast with an exacto and you’d swear the patches were official merch. He even does custom!

 

He takes orders on the official Heavy Horns page and has a Tumblr too!

#4: Trish’s Hoods:

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Trish Dilligaf sent me the first internationally shipped hood from TH and I fell in love. Next thing you know, I was posing for a self portrait shoot and signing up to be the deliverer for Chicago’s hoodrats! I’m now on my third hood, including a giant camouflage one and a reversible plaid and black one. There are so many unique styles to fall in love with and Trish herself is gorgeous.

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Visit her Facebook page to inquire about a hood and follow her Instagram to see her face.

#3: Vikki Sin Art / Pretties For You:

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Upon meeting Vikki, I immediately fell in love. She’s gorgeous! Even more so, she has this “Take not sh*t” attitude. Yet, when I saw her paintings for the first time, I thought she was making it up. It was just too good, and to know that she was painting onto everything from bags to saws… I couldn’t believe it! What were the odds that she also makes jewelry? I immediately jumped at the opportunity and sure enough, the first piece I ever bought from her was so unique and rich!

 

She’s got an Etsy full of amazing things as well as a Facebook page. You can even fall in love with her antics on Instagram!

#2: Painted Faces  by MUAYV

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Okay, so you knew that Yessi did gorgeous makeup and that she can cut and dye hair… but did you know that she also made a mean flower crown? Oh yeah! True story! In fact, she created the red one I’m wearing on my head. And it’s huge but light! Amazing and also extremely sturdy!

You can check out all her lovely face work on Facebook and Instagram!

#1: Renee Jordan

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Okay, so you probably know Renee more as Michonne from The Walking Dead cosplay I did sometime ago. She pieced that entire thing together herself from makeup to her zombie’s wardrobe. Plot Twist: She’s actually an amazing hairstylist as well. Remember when I had a dreadhawk? Yeah, that was her! She’s also a tailor.

She has an Instagram, a Facebook, and a heavily used Pinterest.

Bonus:

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Bonus: You guys have probably seen me in this crochet beanie. I almost never take it off anymore. I’m actually trying to convince the creator, my mother, to start selling them. This particular one is made with custom colors and actually has an alien face on the back. My favorites wouldn’t be complete without it!

If you’re in love with it, post on my Facebook page so that I can finally convince her to start selling them again!

Are you a Handmade Artist?

I’m always looking for something unique to share! So, post a link in the comments to your blog or store and i’l host a handmade artist link up party as well as check your store out! Stay unique!

Jasemine-Denise