Meet JaQuayla Cameron-Hodge, Owner/Photographer with J. Cameron Photography! Along with capturing your big day, JaQuayla is a resource to her couples! Read how she got started, her wedding planning advice, and all about her dog, Huan!

How did you get to where you are now?
It’s been stepping stones for me. I was mostly a hobbyist throughout college. I was a resident assistant (was later employed to being director after graduating) and I used to take my students for sessions in my introverted way of trying to get to know them. It kind of built upon there when I was asked to second shoot for some photographers. That led me to shoot my own weddings.

What makes you or your business stand out and why should a couple hire you?
I find that I’m readily available almost all the time. It’s likely that I’ll respond to your e-mail at 3 am. I’m available to answer questions or give suggestions for things that aren’t even related to photography. I think what makes my business stand out is that I can be used as a resource.

What’s your favorite thing about working in the wedding industry?
I love seeing the stories, cultures, and experiences where couples come from. Every person is impacted by the people in their lives, that’s just how we’re wired. So when you have something like a wedding, which is one of those events where families and friends come together after not seeing each other for years. I have the opportunity to see and capture the people that have had some form of influence in how the couple is who they are today. It’s always a really cool experience and it’s the reason why I got into doing photography.

What’s your best piece of advice for couples planning a wedding?
Delegate early and delegate often. It’s okay to ask for help!

What’s your favorite moment at a wedding?
I really really love the first dances. I’m not sure what part I look forward to the most, the dancing part or the anticipation for knowing what song the couple picked.

How do you de-stress?
I color or try to find something to work on (working on anything usually helps me shift). I enjoy driving too!

What’s your favorite food?
Pizza (NY), Chinese and Thai food.

If you were to meet any celebrity, who would it be?
I’m always teased about it…but Derrick Rose.

What would your perfect Saturday be like?
When I’m not shooting a wedding? I really like to sleep, color, and play video games. I’m a hermit.

What are your top three favorite moves AND books?
Movies: The Lion King, Enemy of the State, Antwone Fisher.

Books: I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, Little Women, Finding Fish

What are some must-see destinations when traveling?
I love to travel even though it doesn’t happen as often as I’d like. I think everyone should go to Anguilla, but I may be biased since my husband’s family is from there

Jenna Leigh Photography

Do you have a pet? What are they like?
Yes! Huan. He’s a Giant Schnauzer. A common thing that comes up in conversations among owners of Giants is that they have human-like intelligence. So Huan is REALLY smart, intuitive, and has a LOT of personality. He hides our keys and wallets to prevent my husband and me from leaving the house so we have to keep it from his reach. We keep an e-collar on him sometimes to keep him in the yard. He figured out that it flashes a light (green charged, red dying, no light dead). So, when he goes outside, he would go to his water bucket and would tilt his head to see the reflection on the collar to gauge the battery life. If he sees no reflection, that’s his cue to go on an adventure outside of our yard. We could write a book!

What’s your favorite family tradition?
Everyone in my family is busy so when it comes to Christmas time, we never get a tree at a reasonable time and always waited until the last minute (Christmas Eve). One year we ended up getting a Christmas Tree for free because of it and ever since then, we kind of tried to see how cheap we can get a tree that year for Christmas. Some years it’s $30, some $5. Every year it gets harder to find a tree, but we haven’t missed one yet. My mom was stressed out by the last (2018) search and tried to get one earlier this past year (2019) but we still never got it until Christmas Eve and it was for free 😉

Learn more about JaQuayla and how she can help capture your wedding on her website! Feature photo courtesy of  Addie Harris Photography. All other photos are courtesy of J. Cameron Photography unless otherwise specified.