Dear Katie at 29 years old sitting in your office cubicle with your headset answering customer calls, completely miserable and missing your newborn baby~ things will get better. You will find your passion, you won’t be stuck at this job forever. Just hang in there, you know this isn’t what you were meant to do and you’re worried that you’ll never find something you truly want to do for a living, but you will. At 29, you are just beginning your adult life and have a lot of learning and growth ahead of you.
Dear Katie at 31 years old and 27 weeks pregnant, just diagnosed with cancer terrified for your life and the life of your unborn baby; you will get through this and you will not leave your husband with two young boys to raise on his own. You will be okay Katie, but you will be forever changed. Change can be a good thing because from this point on you won’t take one day for granted and you’ll come to appreciate the beauty in the everyday. It’s this lesson that you’ve learned through this traumatic experience that will shape you into the artist that you are today. The small details of life that some ignore, you see clearly. You will want to show others how beautiful their lives as well, in ways they may not see. People young and old affected by cancer will reach out to you to help tell their story through photography and films and this will become an important part of your work.
Dear last 4 years Katie and future Katie~ You have found your passion, how lucky are you??!! Taking photos of your children as they grow is the most rewarding experience. Every day you challenge yourself to be a better photographer and filmmaker. You have a beautiful family and a very supportive husband. Life has been good, just remember to not overthink or second guess yourself and always follow your gut. Have fun and grow through the personal projects that fuel your creativity. Growth takes time, and you have grown so much since you first picked up that camera 4 years ago. You are also learning how to run your own business, this is hard work and has a huge learning curve. Be proud of yourself for taking such a risk and for helping to support your family. You are setting an example for your children that you can follow your dreams and earn a living doing something you love. You know you were meant to tell others stories as well as your own so persevere and be an awesome boss lady!
Above all, stay committed to yourself and your goals and everything else will fall into place.
ABOUT THE ARTIST: Katie Jennings is a documentary photographer and filmmaker living in Raleigh, NC with her husband and 3 kids who are growing up way too fast but at least she’ll have photos to remember the days as they fly by