Catalyst Leadership Conference + Getting Unstuck


I thought it was ironic. Of course I’d be ask to speak on a topic I wasn’t entirely comfortable with…isn’t that how life works? I had the privilege of speaking at the Catalyst Leadership Conference this week and while it was an honor in it and of itself, the opportunity was made sweeter to present alongside Bianca, my twin sister and anti-human trafficking champion for A21.

The premise of our presentation was dealing with how to get unstuck in communication (Bianca) and from a creative perspective (me). As I was preparing for my presentation, I felt like I was talking to myself. I wrestled with questions and put forth what I, truly, believe helped me move past moments of artistic impotency.

For sake of brevity, I won’t go into all the details, but I was reminded of what I need to do to get creative…even when I feel like I can’t create. Yes, there are desperate moments when I feel my camera and I are playing for different teams, or we speak different languages. Days when I sit in front of my computer and lack the words needed to convey my thoughts. Nights spent staring at the ceiling knowing I can’t form my dreams, even if they’re resting just below the surface of my mind.

Moving past moments of creative conundrums–working through being stuck–is best addressed by:
1. Writing down your goals.
2. Setting a due date to make it happen.
3. Practicing your craft.
4. Asking for help.
5. Doing the work.

Sure, there are tons of other elements we can dilute the creative process with, but boiled down to the necessities, these five steps aren’t just attainable, they give us the permission to believe in our dreams.

Just before the presentation, I had the pleasure of being interviewed for Backstage West by Carlos Whittaker…who later confessed he read my blog because HIS MOM MADE HIM DO IT.
Dear Mrs. Whittaker…thanks for having great taste. Love you, boo.

I’ve never given a presentation with Bianca, so it was a cool experience and something I’ll cherish…she introduced me to the organizers of Catalyst and it was an honor to collaborate with such a great group of people.

The night before our presentation, I invited my sister over for a practice run of our presentation. We argued, laughed, belittled each other, swore we weren’t related, yet somehow found a way to make it all come together in the end. I guess our mom was right…no matter how much you wanna punch your sister in the face, there’s nothing a hug can’t fix.

Happy Friday!

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  1. Suzanne

    April 19th, 2013 at 11:20 am

    That bottom picture of the two of you in absolutely beautiful!

  2. Carla

    April 19th, 2013 at 12:56 pm

    Love you post. I also have a twin sister. So interesting to share your life with someone who is so much like yourself but also differant. You both are beautiful people.

  3. Lindsey LaRue

    April 19th, 2013 at 2:02 pm

    The two of you could never deny each other! What beautiful women you both are!

    It’s so reassuring to hear that you too get "stuck" from time to time. I sometimes have days that my camera feels like my enemy instead of my companion. You are so encouraging and I am so grateful that you openly share your experiences with us- it gives us the strength to push on, too!

  4. Meredith Sledge

    April 19th, 2013 at 2:57 pm

    Awww, I love that last photo! SO GOOD! You guys are adorable!

  5. ruthie

    April 19th, 2013 at 3:36 pm

    Haha. Awesome.

  6. Juliet Douglas

    April 19th, 2013 at 3:39 pm

    Sounds about right. I live next door to my twin sister so we argue and belittle each other all the time. And then we have dinner together.

  7. LisaGregory

    April 19th, 2013 at 3:51 pm

    My sister is not a twin, we are 2 years apart. And there were times i wanted to punch her in the face, but shown our parents love, we followed suit and practiced what they did. Hugged when we were angry with each other. And as far as Creative impotence, as a scrapbook artist, I go through that as well. Creative people always will now and then….Jasmine Star, you are my Creative Photographer hero!! And your writings always make me smile. Thanks for that!! xo

  8. Kansas Caruso

    April 19th, 2013 at 4:21 pm

    Congratulations on the opportunity to speak at the conference. I know our church staff looks forward to it every year. Happy Friday!

  9. Amy

    April 19th, 2013 at 4:46 pm

    That’s so cool that you got to do a presentation with your sister!

    I’m in your area this week and half hoping I’ll see you on the freeway or something. lol. Chances are it would be your twin sister!

  10. Adreanna

    April 19th, 2013 at 5:01 pm

    Awesome to the 2nd power.

  11. ingamae

    April 19th, 2013 at 5:43 pm

    it was such a huge deal in Heaven that you did this with your sister. You two are spectacular!!!!!!!

  12. DGV

    April 19th, 2013 at 5:54 pm

    your sister got to take a pic with Carl Lentz. Jealous 🙂

  13. Bianca

    April 19th, 2013 at 6:30 pm

    I love you! It was SO much fun to be share by your side 😉

  14. mara

    April 19th, 2013 at 9:10 pm

    Thank you Jasmine – you and your sister continue to serve and huge inspiration and motivating factor to create a photography business devoted to serving those in most need, especially victims of human trafficking.

  15. Constance

    April 19th, 2013 at 10:32 pm

    I’ve been following your blog for a couple years now and I love everything about you! Your drive, your creativity, your transparency, your CLOTHES, oh and your photography 😉 my only disappointment is this-why dont you have a mobile app??? 🙂 would love to read your blow/follow you on the go 🙂

  16. Sarah James

    April 20th, 2013 at 2:36 am

    What a wonderful talk jasmine! I’m always looking for ways to get "unstuck" from doing the same thing. Thank you for the valuable information. Love!

  17. Cynthia McIntyre

    April 21st, 2013 at 9:15 pm

    I absolutely love the art work and design of your blog. It is truly the best one I have ever seen!!!

  18. Michelle Meston

    April 22nd, 2013 at 5:58 pm

    You two are adorable! I love the post, you are an inspiration!

  19. Ashley Rogers

    April 22nd, 2013 at 7:25 pm

    That is so cool! Is there a way for us to get a hold of your sessions from the Conference?

  20. LEOLAK

    April 24th, 2013 at 2:46 am

    So great!!! You two are just gorgeous!!! Inside and out!!!

  21. Alaina Bos

    April 25th, 2013 at 8:26 pm

    I’ve been in a creative rut lately… Feeling stuck and not sure how to fix it. I think the most difficult thing for me is wrestling with the responsibilities of being the primary shooter and getting the job done versus thinking creatively to provide each client with a unique set of photographs.