Influencing with Purpose: Jessica S. Irvin
Social media influencers are everywhere. However, not all influencers were made equally. Some use their platforms for more than just advertising themselves. This issue’s Influencing with Purpose focuses on Jessica S. Irvin, a photographer who helps coach others with branding and social strategy.
What made you start your website?
I originally created my website as a digital portfolio while searching for jobs in college. Since college, it has evolved into a platform for potential clients, share content, and a personal creative outlet!
How did you develop your photography style?
My photography style has slowly evolved over the years. A big part of my style development has been learning what truly makes me happy (bright, vibrant colors) and not settling for more popular, trendy styles.
What are some of your favorite Fort Worth memories?
Fort Worth was a huge part of my childhood! Some highlights include the Stock Show and Rodeo (always dressed in my cowgirl best), taking photos at the Fort Worth Botanical Gardens, school field trips at the Kimbell Art Museum, family days at the Fort Worth Museum of Science and History, and many rounds of golf on the city’s municipal courses. I attended Texas Wesleyan University which was the first time I lived in central Fort Worth, which also happened to be a huge time of growth for the small business community in the city (2012-2015).
We love that you are passionate about thrifting. What motivates you to do that and where do you shop for the best finds?
Thanks to my mom, I have grown up thrifting and it’s always been a part of my life. My main motivations for thrifting are to be more sustainable and to save money, but I also enjoy finding unique pieces that you’d never find new.
How long have you been married, and what is some advice you would give to newlyweds?
Noah and I will be celebrating 4 years of marriage in May. As clichéd as it sounds, I truly am thankful to be married to my best friend! My biggest advice is to prioritize regular quality time with each other, put the others needs before your own (Philippians 2:3-4), and to intentionally pursue each other’s interests and passions.
What was it like finding out you were having twins?
After having a missed miscarriage last spring (which we learned about at my first sonogram), we went into my first sonogram of this pregnancy with zero expectations and guarded emotions. While I think it’s safe to say that it still hasn’t completely set in yet: we are absolutely terrified, overjoyed, and beyond thankful to be having twins in the spring!
Living sustainably: how have you done it, and how do you plan on living sustainably as a new mom?
It has been a learning process. The big key things I focus on are simply buying less stuff, choosing to buy second hand over new products, and by supporting ethical businesses when I do have to make new purchases. I’ve also slowly been replacing disposable products with reusable options for everyday products like coffee cups, shopping bags, and cleaning supplies.
What are your aspirations for your business?
I regularly reevaluate my business aspirations. One constant goal is to empower other women, whether that’s providing them with business headshots, educating them, or just creating great content to help them discover all our city has to offer.
What is some advice you would give aspiring photographers?
Shoot A LOT! Producing a lot of content is the best way to gain experience, determine what type of work you do and don’t like, and develop your own personal style. It’s also extremely beneficial to surround yourself with other creatives, even if their work is different from your own.
What’s your favorite book and why?
Oh boy, this is a tough one! Some recent favorites of mine are “Educated” and “The Color of Compromise.”
What political or social issue motivates you to take action?
Long story short, I’m an advocate for human dignity. This includes (but is not limited to) criminal justice reform, immigration reform, and acknowledging the present-day implications of our country’s past with slavery and harming many different people groups.
Readers of this publication love their pets, tell us about yours.
Our spoiled pup is Pepper, a cattle dog mix that we rescued from the Humane Society of North Texas. We love sitting on local coffee shop patios with her, walking along the Trinity Trails, and meeting up with friends at MUTTS Cantina.
What is Fort Worth missing?
I would love to see the continued growth of the Fort Worth music scene. While there’s been tremendous growth over the years (primarily thanks to Fortress Fest), we still find ourselves having to drive to Dallas to see a lot of our favorite bands on tour. I hope artists start discovering what a wonderful host city that Fort Worth can be.
Jessica’s Fort Worth Favorites
Craftwork Camp Bowie
Breakfast or Brunch place
Funky Town Donuts (downtown location if I’m not getting them to go)
Hangout with friends
Place to relax and recharge
Hammocking in Trinity Park
Museum or gallery
Fort Works Art
Artist or musician
Art Goggles and Open Streets
Spot to take photos
The Foundry District