Hey there! I'm Jen and welcome to my kitchen.
A Long Road
I'd like to say that I was born a creative. A personality trait that I faught it tooth and nail for a very, very long time. It isn't exactly a choice, is it? Being a creative? But there I was, choosing the path of most resistence. Needless to say, the journey was a bumpy one.
After graduation, I pursued an art degree with a focus in photography. This was way back before the digital age (yes, I'm that old). I spent days in the dark room developing film and truly despised the process. It was long, lonely and stank of chemicals. Is that why I dropped out mid-way through my degree? No, not exactly.
While I loathed the dark room, I absolutely loved photography. I had done a bunch of art classes during my (half) degree such as painting, sculpture, sketching and even ceramics, but none even came close to photography. So no, I didn't leave because of the dark room. I left because no one around me seemed to think I could make a living from being an artist.
Walking the Safe Route
So half-way through my art degree, I abandoned ship. Why be a photographer when you can make a career in neuroscience, right? Off I went, straight into sciences, and I worked in neurology for 15 years before breaking.
During these fifteen years, photography remained a part of my life. I couldn't seem to let it go (and trust me, I tried). I did portraits and weddings for years before I had children. Once the kiddos came along, it became too difficult to juggle photography sessions on top of my full time job. So I scrapped the portrait sessions and stuck exclusively weddings since they were mostly seasonal.
Then life happened and I became a single mom. Weddings lost their appeal for obvious reasons. So I stuffed my camera in the back of a closet and let it collect dust. What creative outlet did I plug into the void photography left? You guessed it: baking.
I've always found joy in baking. Being in the kitchen and preparing food has a calming affect on me. So I baked - obsessively. The situation kind of escalated quickly. First, I baked for myslef, then for markets, then for large catering events. As this business grew, I met my life partner who just happened to own a restaurant. Food was all encompasing after that.
While my passion for food had taken new heights, my heart missed photography - deeply. I felt like I was walking the earth missing a limb. I was oblivious to the fact that food photography was a thing, or that there was money to be made from it, but I decided to start documenting what I was cooking through images.
I purchased the domain for this website one night after several glasses of wine without any idea what it would become. That too, escalated. In just a few short years, Cashmere & Cocktails has grown to become the business I never knew it could be.
All Roads Lead to Rome
I feel incredibly lucky to have made it here. I have the opportunity to make a living doing what I'm truly passionate about. After getting in my own way for so long, I never thought it would happen. That's the thing about being a creative: it isn't a choice. You can try to fight it, but eventually all roads lead to Rome.
Let's Work Together!
If you're looking for food or travel photography, recipe development, or blog/Instagram partnerships, I'd love to hear from you.