Jewel of the Month 

Jennifer M. Goodwin 

Professional Photographer

Owner, Fetishh Boudoir

Owner, Jenn Rich Photography

July 2019

Mrs. Jennifer M Goodwin

Mrs. Jennifer M. Goodwin is a gifted and celebrated professional photographer based in beautiful and picturesque Benicia, Califoria.  At first glimpse, her physical beauty and pure energy is undeniable and magnetic, leading most to the conclusion that she would also be suited for a career in front of the camera.  Her portfolio of work leaves little to the imagination as to why she is one of the most sought-after photographers in the Northern California region.  Her work is raw, real, and speaks directly to the hearts of her audience, while simultaneously bringing each of her subjects to life vibrantly and with seemingly effortless talent and skill.

Although she is currently enjoying the success of her flourishing photography businesses, Mrs. Goodwin is a phenomenal woman who excels in multiple areas of her life:  Mortgage Banker, Fitness Coach/Motivator, mother to three beautiful, incredible young adults, and a happily married newlywed to Professor Richard Goodwin, Head Instructor and Managing Partner of New Creation Wrestling & Jiu Jitsu located in Benicia, California.   She seamlessly balances her businesses while assisting her husband with his own projects and maintaining a loving and supportive presence in the lives of her children, extended family, and friends across the country. 

I had the extreme honor of interviewing Mrs. Goodwin to get further insight into her fascinating journey.  We initially met and became friends while attending Benicia Middle School in the 80's, and I can attest that she had a brilliant light that illuminated her being even as a child.  I was moved and touched by her honesty during this interview and I believe she is changing the lives of anyone blessed to know and interact with her, simply by being her remarkable and authentic self.  Her drive, determination, courage, and beautiful spirit will motivate and inspire you to explore your OWN soul's purpose.

Interview with Jennifer M. Goodwin

Jeanette's Jewels:  Thank you for allowing me the opportunity to learn more about your life's work and personal philosophies.  I'm truly honored to get a glimpse into the mind of such an extraordinarily talented and inspirational woman.  You are an incredible example of a woman with the drive and determination to soar above any of life's inevitable obstacles, and I know that sharing your journey will empower every woman reading your story.  

When did your love for photography begin, and did you immediately know this would be your life’s work and passion?

Jennifer M. Goodwin

You know, I’ve answered this question about 100 different ways, but the truth is I believe I was born a visionary. I’ve always had a keen interest in the world around me and my brain acted like a camera all the time. It doesn’t surprise me that my photography would finally come to fruition. 

 

I live with a mental illness that I battle, and have a love-hate relationship with my Bipolar I disorder.  When I’m manic, there’s an extremely creative side that pours like paint, and the dark side of me is when I’m in the depths of depression. I cycle every 3 to 6 months and it’s very noticeable in my photography. There is an essence of beauty and pain that weaves itself like a ribbon in my life.  I didn’t know photography would be my life’s work until you asked. What a profound and defining moment for me, thank you. 

Jeanette's Jewels:  

Wow, that is amazing! I'm so grateful have a front row seat to your fascinating evolution and I'm sure I can speak for the world when I say that you recognizing your calling will definitely lead to a world filled with more beauty.  And I thank you from my heart for your honesty and openness regarding your Bipolar disorder.  There are so many women living with various mental illnesses who may not be as emboldened to express their truths and are suffering as a result. I believe the more we all speak about it, the more we empower our sisters to seek assistance to live healthy lives, as well as reaping the cathartic benefits it has in our own lives.  I am eternally grateful for your candor and bravery.

Switching gears a little bit here, it seems that most women who overcome trials and go on to achieve success in life were usually inspired by someone along the way.  What women, either in the photography industry or in your personal life, were your biggest inspirations on your journey to becoming a successful entrepreneur?  And in what ways did they inspire you? 

Jennifer M. Goodwin:  

I don’t believe people can “be” entrepreneurs. I believe you're born with the ability to be a free thinker or you’re not.  It’s just the way of the world; you either have it or you don’t. 

 

Bridgette La Day Allen, a strong, beautiful and vivacious African American Real Estate Agent approached me one day and said: “Make sure you work hard while you're raising your son. You don’t want your kids to be lazy.  You don’t want to be one of those girls on welfare assistance.” And just like that, she sparked a fire within me to succeed.  I worked hard, stayed focused and dedicated, and never had to collect welfare. I had a long standing career in mortgage banking and raised 3 independent children into adulthood before pursing my passion for photography.

Jeanette's Jewels 

Having a mentor or an inspiring presence in our lives goes a long way in helping to recognize our God-given potential and finding the strength to pursue it.  I can imagine how proud Ms. Allen must have been to see you grow into such a phenomenal woman while raising such amazing children.  With the curve-balls that can be thrown at us (sometimes more than I care to catch!)  on a daily basis, what obstacles have you faced during your journey and how did you overcome them to achieve your success?

Jennifer M. Goodwin:  

I was medically diagnosed with Bipolar I in 2008. Everything I’ve experienced from the time I was a teenager until adulthood all makes sense now, since having a confirmed diagnosis.  I’m a lifer on a permanent roller coaster with very few stops.  Some of my successes may seem small to others, but they are MINE. I don’t competition with anyone, nor do I even have a desire to do so.  Besides, no one wants to live in my shoes because it’s not for the faint of heart.  

Jeanette's Jewels:   

As someone who has suffered from severe depression and post traumatic stress syndrome, I can completely relate to that sentiment.  But what I truly hope you can see and FEEL is that the fact that you are THRIVING in spite living with Bipolar disorder makes you beyond exceptional.  You had the courage to seek help and as a result have learned to not just live with it, but to EXCEL

This brings me to yet another reason why I admire and respect you so much. You inspired me to pursue my own weight-loss journey and your words and encouragement empowered me to keep going, even when I felt discouraged.  What would you like to share about your desire to motivate and empower women, and can you tell us a little about your own journey?

Jennifer M. Goodwin:  

My weight loss journey came at the time in my life when I was going through ANOTHER failed ten-year .marriage. (Yep another.) I had never been surrounded by so many supportive women during my transformation process and each one was going through their own personal journeys. 

 

The exercises classes were my therapy and I was free to be angry, sad, cry, or just grunt and cuss if I needed to. But when the class ended, I left everything I had on that floor. I lost 52 pounds thanks to my sister and LaTasha Renee for P2P, who is another successful African-American woman that I love very much.

 

I made it my mission to share everything I learned during my own experience. The most important encouragement I’d like to offer to women who are currently on this journey is this:  TAKE TIME FOR YOURSELF. We always say, I’ll do it tomorrow, or next week, or I’m too busy right now.  But remember, it only takes 20 minutes to an hour per day to transform and you can do it!  If anyone needs help in their journey, please reach out! I will do my best to motivate you!! 

Jeanette Jewels

I can definitely co-sign on your encouraging and motivational coaching because you got me up and in the gym on days when Lord KNOWS I didn't want to do it!  I am forever grateful to you for helping me change my life.  Getting into shape helped to boost my confidence to pursue my own professional goals as well.  What advice would you give to women who may be contemplating starting their own business or living another life-long passion?

Jennifer M. Goodwin 

I would say, get REALLY clear on what you’re truly passionate about doing. My husband always says, don’t talk about it, be about it! I love his male version of Go For it! Works every time for me. 

Jeanette's Jewels:  

I think that is one most empowering mantras for any woman, "don't talk about it, be about it!"​  Taking action is the only way to realize a dream and your life is proof positive that dreams WORK when WE do.  Speaking of work, your photos are some of the most beautiful expressions I've ever seen.  Talk about being BORN to do it!  The raw beauty of your spirit is somehow translated into all of your photos, which is fascinating.  What inspires you to create such breathtaking work and would you mind sharing your creative process?

 

Jennifer M. Goodwin:  

Most photos speak to me.  When I’m studying my subject, there’s an art aspect to everything thing I touch from color, to lighting, to the angle, and I also listen to a lot of music while working from beginning to end.  There are some photos I have to walk away from for a bit, and then I'll come back to them feeling newly inspired. I have more men these days who want to do Boudoir photos, but I’ll be damn if I’m not listening to Maxwell! Can’t wait to show these ones off!

Jeanette's Jewels:   

At the risk of going a bit unprofessional as an interviewer, I'm looking forward to it as well! You have been one of my most memorable interviews to date and I am so thankful to you for your time and for allowing me to explore and share a little bit of your genius.  For all the women reading this article and have now been inspired by you, what is the most important message you would like to share to promote their empowerment?

Jennifer M. Goodwin:

Be proud of your essence and hold onto your identity. If you stray, God will bring you back. Know that everything you experience in life is just that an “experience.”  Don’t let it define you.  I’ve never said to anyone, “I’m Bipolar.”  I tell people I live with Bipolar disorder but who I AM is Jennifer, and I think she's pretty incredible.

Jenn Rich Photography

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

For more information about Mrs. Jennifer M. Goodwin and to submit inquiries for her photography, please visit and follow her online:

FACEBOOK:  @jenn.goodwin2017

INSTAGRAM:  @jennrichphotograpy

Jenn Rich Photography

Jenn Rich Photography

Jenn Rich Photography

Jenn Rich Photography

Jenn Rich Photography

Jenn Rich Photography

Jenn Rich Photography

Jenn Rich Photography

Jenn Rich Photography

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