Documenting Real Stories: Photographing Employment Hardship + Lessons Learned

Weeks before I was married, a friend’s mother warned me that my marriage would never work. Little did she know that comment wouldn’t deter me. It challenged me. I think she meant well, really I do, because I was 19 and my husband, Joel was 20 when we were married. When I look back now, we were so young, just babes really, with little to go on.

I attended college full time and Joel worked hard, but his paychecks were small. Those beginning years of our marriage where we lived on little financially, but on an abundance of love and determination, taught us to live simply, work hard, and complain little.  Those lessons early on have served us well.  Our decisions over the years have reflected what we learned early on. We don’t need abundance.  Hard work, hearts united, and a willingness to give and take have carried us through.

At the birth of our first son, it was decided that I would stay home and we would make due on one income. I have not known a day when Joel didn’t work hard to provide for our family. He has had job changes and hardships, but never has he thrown in the towel and quit. He continues to work and give his all to support our family.

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Most recently we went through several hard months as a family and I watched as he again picked himself up from a difficult situation. He didn’t bury his head in defeat, but instead took on the challenge that was set before him, he became self-employed. I knew I needed to capture the commitment that this man has to working without complaint. When our neighbor asked Joel to put metal siding on her barn, I knew I had the opportunity I had been looking for. I knew I had found a way to tell his story, our story.

A story about a boy and girl who fell madly in love twenty-eight years ago and who have worked steadily side by side, to make a home, a life, a beautiful story.

 

 

 

 

 

Guest post writing and images are from photographer, Jenny Bowers.

Jenny Bowers is a camera totin’, storytelling, country girl living a simple life with her husband and four children. When she’s not preserving memories and telling stories through her lens, she is homeschooling her children or spending time helping on her family’s land.

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Author: Eboni Rivera
Fearless and Framed's Course and Community Ambassador + Self proclaimed "Memory Giver". Eboni is a Family Documentary Photographer and Film Artist at Luxe Art Images, LLC located in Long Island, NY. She provides emotive, heart-tugging, feel good photography and films for families who give a damn about the preservation of their memories. Her approach to photography allows families to leave behind a legacy of who they are, how much they love and just how awesome their lives truly are.

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