A lot (okay, most) of my client interaction is done via email. I don’t have a business phone, for the simple fact that I have a small child in the home and I don’t think it’s very professional to have him screeching and pretending to be a ninja turtle in the background while I am trying to talk to clients. Plus, I like the automatic record keeping that comes with e-mail. Anyway, we can chase that rabbit another time.
I know that any communication where the other person’s tone and inflection is kind of up to the discretion of the reader – that can be dangerous. Things get taken the wrong way, fights break out, rumors get started – it’s basically a big ole crap show. And I know that communication with a business can sometimes come off as impersonal and cold, but I want you guys to know that is never my intent. I don’t ever want yall to be afraid to email me because you think I’m cut and dried and I’m gonna treat you like the automated checkouts at Walmart (which ugh, the worst.). I’m fun, y’all. I’m silly and I don’t care if I look stupid and I’ll do basically anything to get that smile from your kid. And I want you guys to feel like you are reaching out to a real person when you’re reaching out to me, with no fear of being repeatedly yelled at to “Please place the item in the bag.” I really hate those automated checkouts at Walmart.
I thrive on communication and connection, and I thrive on honesty and authenticity. You’ve probably heard this a thousand times, but “what you see is what you get” with me. I love forging that bond with clients that makes you say, “Hey, me too!” I like starting off with a client-artist relationship, but I like leaving as friends. Because I tell you what, I like being one of the first ones you guys text when those two pink lines appear. I like being one of the ones you call when you’re on the way to the hospital and your contractions are so close together you aren’t sure you’ll make it. I like being the one to help you plan your baby’s first birthday party, because I know I’m going to be there right beside you. And I absolutely freaking love it when the cycle starts all over again.
Since I’m sure you’re all dying to know more about me so we can be insta-BFFs, I put together a list of some must-know facts about me.
1.) I like to be organized, but apparently my house doesn’t fall into this category. Toys on the floor? Leave ’em. He’ll just drag them out again. Laundry waiting to be folded? Throw it on the couch with the other three loads waiting to be folded. About once or twice a week, I kind of blitz through and do everything at once. The only thing that does fall under this umbrella is my clothes, which I organize first by season, then by color. Yup. It’s like the most laid-back case of OCD ever.
2.) We just moved back to my hometown. We have 3.5 acres and we’re planning on building a house within the next couple of years. We live right next door to my parents (the house I grew up in). We also live three houses down from my grandparents, who are 87 and 85 and just larger than life. Seriously, I could write a book about them and they would force me to classify it as fiction.
3.) I am the grammar police. Sorry, not sorry. But really, y’all. Commas and apostrophes save lives.
4.) I’m a nail biter, which is fairly embarrassing for someone my age. And I don’t really get embarrassed ever, so there you go. Even though I don’t really care for them, I’ve taken to wearing fake nails before I gnaw a knuckle off.
5.) I’m a plant killer. It’s affectionately known as a Black Thumb in my family. I do have a bowl of succulents and a desert rose that I constantly and consistently forget to water, so both of those guys are doing great. Yay me! My husband, on the other hand, is the orchid whisperer. He even takes in ones that other people have almost killed and nurses them back to life. It’s like we’re running an orchid rescue. #adoptdontshop
6.) I LOVE farm animals. My husband has finally agreed to chickens, goats and a teacup pig. All of them are our friends and we do not eat our friends. I wanted a cow, but my husband said he likes steak (so do I), and we do not eat our friends.
7.) I hold a Bachelor’s of Science in Communication, focus on advertising and PR. It took me 6 years to graduate. I changed majors twice; the first two were fashion design, and then creative writing. I had enough credits to minor in French and never filled out the paperwork. Burn-out is real. I’m still not sure I got the right degree.
8.) We love it out here on our little piece of land, but my husband and I have frequent conversations about living in a.) Montana, or b.) Australia. I love the beach, so Australia is a little bit ahead of Montana for me. I do not think I could tolerate being snowed in for months at a time
9.) I’m an extroverted introvert. I love you guys. I love going out and being social and making friends. But I want to do it all in my pajamas, from my couch, preferably without having to interact with anyone.
10.) I met my husband at a Halloween party. He was dressed at Bender from Futurama (I was dressed as Tom Cruise from Risky Business. Yep, that scene!) and he obviously wore a helmet the whole night. I loved his costume, and in my paparazzi capacity, I took a photo of him, uploaded it to Facebook with the caption, “I don’t know this guy, but whoever he is, we’re best friends.” We never spoke that night, he left early, and I didn’t see him again until the following June at a “Yay, we survived finals!” bash. We talked (literally) all night, and he proposed four months later.
11.) I’m allergic to pine pollen and mosquito bites. Southeast Texas is super fun for me. I take sensitive skin to new levels.
12.) You know that episode of Grey’s Anatomy with Abigail Breslin as the little girl who just got adopted who can’t feel pain, and she’s been having people punch her in the stomach as hard as they can for years to prove it and she’s got all this internal damage but has no idea? I have a sneaking suspicion that’s also me. I bounce back really quickly from illnesses and surgeries. Freakishly fast.
13.) I love writing instruments. Specifically, pens. Specifically, felt tip. Paper Mate Flair are my one true love. Is there anything better than handwritten notes? No. No, there isn’t.
14.) My mom is an amazing seamstress, and I never had a store-bought dress (formal or otherwise) until my Senior year of High School. I can barely stitch a hem, and whether or not it will be straight is always a surprise.
15.) I was obsessed with dinosaurs, and I had fairly big dreams of being a paleontologist when I was little. And then I found out that takes a lot of math classes and I went, LOL no.
16.) Lemon flavored anything. Can I get an amen?
17.) I have to read myself to sleep every night. Our Amazon account is kind of impressive. I’ve been through three Kindles in 5 years. I read 2-3 books a week. My favorites are Young Adult Dystopian novels/series, although I love a good classic. Also, Harry Potter forever and ever, amen.
18.) Nerd alert: my son’s middle name, Flynn …. got it from Tron. Not even kidding. If we have more kids, they’ll all have sci-fi inspired middle names, because we’re awesome and dorky like that.
19.) I’m freaked out by mascots and any kind of costume where there is a person inside but I can’t see their face. Think of all the nightmarish mall Easter Bunnies. It’s horrifying. I’ve been working on this in anticipation of the day we take my little to Disneyworld, but we haven’t planned our trip there yet because I think Ezra would probably cry if I kicked Mickey in his kneecaps.
20.) Photography started as a hobby of mine and something that had always interested me, but it can be traced pretty impressively throughout my family tree. My great-great-whatever grandpa was one of the first photographers in England. Fun fact: my ancestors owned the rights to “Rule, Britannia!” at one time.
How’s that for a start? Let’s be BFFs!
Jo Truncali is a family photographer specializing in lifestyle and documentary imagery, located in Beaumont, Texas. Serving all of Southeast Texas and Southwest Louisiana, including but not limited to Lumberton, Nederland, Port Neches, China, Sour Lake, Lake Charles, and Liberty. Available for travel worldwide.