Jewel Chenoweth is a Wedding Photographer, she’s also in a relationship with a woman. Hello and welcome, I hope you’re here for love.
Whether it’s a small civil union or your version of ‘My Big Fat Gay Wedding’ I’ll be there to capture it. It’s not about a Bride and a Groom, it’s about your love for each other, the way your hands touch, the way you glance at one another, it’s how you make each other feel, your love. That’s what I love to photograph. Love.
I started this Directory, Facebook page and campaign separate from my photography Facebook page as it came to my attention that it was pretty hard to find an LGBTQ friendly photographer that stated that they were LGBTQ friendly!
A same sex couple contacted me early in 2012 and in the email apologised for being same sex and for asking (in case I was offended), they just wanted couples portraits. My heart sank at the thought of people fearing photographers saying no to them because they’re same sex.
Now that my relationship is heading towards marriage, I’ve started taking my ‘Pinterest Fantasy Wedding’ a little more seriously and I went looking for a Gay Friendly Wedding Directory in South Australia. There wasn’t one. So I created one. A few people said to me “Why do you need to do this, I don’t understand”. Within 24 hours of starting my campaign a business responded to my enquiry, about being in the directory, declined AND THEN asked to be on the NOT List. This venue was actually on my short list, for my own wedding. Could you imagine going through the process of visiting the venue, putting down a deposit, even rocking up on the day of my wedding and being met with discrimination and disapproval. It’s heartbreaking. It truly is heartbreaking and that is the last thing you want for your wedding. So the directory is important. The directory serves a purpose to give the LGBTQ community in Adelaide a place to start looking, when planning their wedding.
For me this wasn’t about politics. It’s about starting the conversation. We’ve been having the conversation for decades about same sex marriage laws. Changing the law is only one part of the story. Changing the Wedding Industry is the next part of the story. The law can change to allow same sex marriages, but if the wedding industry isn’t there with open arms, then it’s going to be really difficult and possibly heartbreaking. The laws surrounding gender identity and sexual orientation discrimination are changing (last amended June 2013) and I’ll have an update tomorrow on the particulars of Same Sex Weddings specifically for business/consumer relationships. If wedding vendors don’t want to take work from Same Sex couples, that’s fine because that means there’s less people to share that $1.8 billion with – that is how much Same Sex marriage is worth to the Australian Economy.
For South Australian’s that want to know how to identify a wedding vendor that accepts Same Sex couples, you can check the Directory on the Facebook page, search here through the posts or by using a tag search here like “hair dresser” or “stationary”, you can also look for this symbol:
So here I am, I’m in a lesbian relationship, I identify as me. I’m in love and I’m eagerly awaiting a proposal. I don’t identify as gay or bisexual but whatever you identify as, if you’re in love and you want professional photos of you and your partner, simply say hello!