My main reason for this Blog is keep record of my new adventures in life. I want to be able to look back at how I started and what challenges and I had to overcome along the way. I’ve never been good at keeping diaries or journals. I probably started 15 different ones and had only 3 passages in each. So I hope I keep up with this lol…
Growing up smack dab in the middle of a household of 7, I didn’t have many adventures. I was always doing chores and taking care of my younger siblings. My youngest brother was born with Prader Willie Syndrome (which consists of bad behaviors & eating disorders) along with mild mental retardation, so he needed a little Xtra attention. I was the second mother while my parents were at work, so I didn’t get to play sports & I never had any hobbies. When I got older and started applying for jobs they’d ask me to name my hobbies I would reply hanging out with my family or dancing (not professionally lol). I always tried to keep things simple in life, never wanted to give my parents any extra trouble. I got good grades and got accepted to San Diego State University but decided to save my parents money and take my general ed. at Rio Hondo College. I had no clue what I wanted to do so I decided I wanted to help people like my brother; I majored in Speech therapy for children with mental disabilities. I graduated with my AA in Liberal Arts and I feel a sense of accomplishment from receiving my degree, but I still haven’t put it to use. I took a little break and followed a completely different path.
My first hobby started at the age of 21 when my mama and I decided to take a Michaels Cake Decorating class. I had no idea how addicted I was going to get. When I first started I was horrible. But watching all the cake shows made me want to be as good as them. I almost signed up for Le Cordon Bleu Culinary Arts School (twice), which was gonna cost me a whopping $60,000! Luckily I changed my mind and I’m glad because the school focused mostly on baking & pastries and I was more interested in the art of cake decorating! Everything I learned was from asking people questions, you tube, and the cake TV shows. I had plenty of cake disasters that made me want to quit but something pushed me to continue. After 2 years of doing it from home for my friends and family I decided I wanted to see how far I could go, so I applied to a bakery. To make a long story short, after 2 months of working at this bakery I became the Lead Cake Decorator! I would always hear from the customers “You’re as good as the people on the Cake shows!” or “You guys should have your own cake show on TV!” I felt awesome that I was able to accomplish my goal of getting as good as the people on TV!
Yet I wasn’t completely satisfied, it sparked a yearning inside of me to find out what else I could be good at. It validated my parents & teachers words; “You can do anything you set your mind to!” So the next thing that popped into my mind was to take a stab at Photography. I will be starting Photography school this Monday and I’m super stoked! It’s definitely something that I had always been interested in since my mom gave me my first disposable camera to capture moments on my 6th grade camping trip. I took pictures of everything! When I developed them I had so many photos of friends with their heads clipped off and random rocks. I was pretty horrible! This interest continued to middle school, the cool thing to go to the mall and take pictures with your friends. I remember the photographers setting us up in poses and snapping away, and I’d imagine being the photographer and thinking of what I would do get the best pose out of each person. I tucked a sheet into my cousins’ top dresser and had them squat in front in different poses, snapping away with my Aunts camera. After the photo shoot & everything was cleaned up we checked out the camera and realized that it had no film! Talk about disappointed!
Years later, I’m married with children (well one son lol) and my goal is to be the best wife and mother I can be. I want to be able to have a business from home that I am passionate about and I can organize my schedule around my family. Is it too much to ask to want to be the trophy wife, team mom, and business woman? lol. I am hoping that Photography will be my key to fulfilling this dream. So Photography World here I come…
I'M JANELLE MARINA
Wife, Mama Shark, + Photographer.
Most days, you'll find me in mismatched socks and a top knot, working behind my computer with a smile on my face, listening to Zac Brown Band and R&B
--or, dancing in the kitchen with my 3 littles and hunka husband, seeing who could come up with the coolest dance moves. I'm a wedding photographer, West Elm lover, aspiring advocate for our buddies with special needs, and a Certified Dreamer since 1986. We live in a cozy city in Southern California and are always up for a good adventure. I enjoy telling stories with my camera, grubbing on spicy food, and solving the latest Dateline case.