Today we are bringing you a new series that we will be doing at EMP called Flourish.
The foundation of our studio has been built on our Christian faith, values, and beliefs; and that is something we take great pride in. Even when we are selecting our senior models that will represent our studio, we take time to select girls that stand out from the crowd. Girls that represent their families and their schools in a positive manner. Since we started EMP we have met some amazing people that are really taking steps to make a difference in this world. We want to take a chance for you to meet them too!
This series is going to highlight some of those young women who really are standing up for something and choosing to be a world changer!
The word flourish means to thrive; to be at the height of influence; to be successful. We chose to name this series Flourish because that represents what these young women are doing in the community in which they live. They’re all impacting others lives whether they realize it or not.
If you have someone you would like to nominate to be highlighted during our Flourish series, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We would love to hear from you!
We can’t think of anyone we would rather start our Flourish series off with other than Taylor Benson. So please allow us to tell you her story.
About a year ago, one of our senior models was chatting with us about a girl she went to school with who had really inspired her. At the time, we didn’t realize who she was (later on Emily realized that Taylor is the niece of her high school youth pastor), but knew that we wanted to get to know her. We reached out to her to do a photo shoot, but our schedules didn’t sync up to get her in to the studio until recently.
The day of her shoot she came in for hair and makeup and after just a few minutes of chatting with her, we knew this sweet girl was making such a difference among her peers. We started the shoot and took much more of an interview type approach than just a normal shoot. We loved getting to chat with her and find out what inspires her!
One of the first questions we asked her was if she has ever stumbled with her faith being raised in a family full of pastors. Her answer was that growing up in a family full of pastors actually helped structure her life and gave her a solid foundation for anything she would face during high school. She said as a teenager, she had typical teenage insecurities like most teenage girls do, but she just kept on going with the flow. Throughout the entire shoot, everything that came out of her mouth seemed positive. There was never anything negative, even when the conversation could have taken a negative turn it ended on a positive note.
Somehow we got on the subject of walking the halls of the school and keeping your faith. I asked her if she ever had trouble in high school, being a girl of faith, and if it ever caused her problems. She said its funny that I asked. During homecoming she decided she wanted to go with a group of friends instead of taking a date. Someone actually made the comments, don’t worry about Taylor, her date is Jesus. It took me aback that someone would say that to a girl this humble. And to be honest, when I looked in her eyes I could see a little bit of pain but she would never let anyone know that it hurt her.
Taylor also has a blog (taytalksblog.wordpress.com) that we had read prior to her session. (Side note, its amazing, you should totally check it out!) Taylor said that she felt like her blog was on outlet to be able to write and tell a little about herself, her story, and the general struggles of being a teenager. She told me that one time a girl wrote in to her blog that was in desperate need of help. Taylor went to her parents to ask how she should help this girl. It really stood out to us that she always seems to go to her parents for answers. To watch her and her mother interact during the shoot, you can tell she respects her mother above all else.