Melanie : Five Years From Now


I sat with Melanie in the corner of a dark restaurant. So much has changed in the course of our 15-year friendship, yet nothing has. She’s still animated and slightly dramatic, and I still make fun of her and ask inappropriate questions. We met freshman year of high school and have been together through every high and low, break up to make up, and bad makeup. She’s moving to New York for a bit next week and I don’t know what I’ll do without her.

We spoke about her therapist (all my friends have therapists…it’s very Californian and I may just get one too so I can fit in and feel all cool) and the best way to approach the oncoming changes in her life.

So, my therapist asked where I see myself in five years…I really hated that question…how do I even know?!
What did you say?
I told her I’ve never been a person who thinks like that…it’s just not me. Not now, anyway.
So it ended like that?
No, she rephrased the question and asked how I’d like to “feel” in five years.
To which you replied?
Secure. In five years I want to feel secure
That’s a great word. Do you want the last bit of salad or can I finish it?
Then she said that if I wanted to feel secure, I needed to outline ways I could make it become a reality five years…and then start making them happen.

Whoa. I felt like I was having a therapy session (for free!) right then because it was just that simple. Sure, I might not know where, exactly, I want to be in five years (five years ago I couldn’t even imagine my life would look like it does now), but I can attribute the emotional connections I want to experience. Once I do, I can ensure the same happens for me.

Mel, I said in between sips of my drink, I want to feel secure too. And challenged. And excited. And then we toasted to us. In five years.

A few weeks ago, Melanie asked if I could photograph a new headshot for her before hitting the streets of New York City. I’m only shooting weddings these days, but she reminded me of that one time she saved me in English Honors of sophomore year of high school…and I had to give in.

I don’t wanna get all dinosaur, but RAWR.

Melanie, I hope you know how thankful I am to be your friend.

Happy Wednesday!

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  1. Chucky Woolery

    February 2nd, 2012 at 2:27 pm

    Nueva York?!? Mel might need a date to help her feel secure in the big apple!?! Shall I make some phone calls? Or a list of 101 reasons why I’m an awesOme matchmaker?

  2. Stephanie Stewart

    February 2nd, 2012 at 2:47 pm

    So beautiful! Best of luck on your friend’s move to NYC! You’ll have to go visit and do more photos there!

  3. Rachel Tatem

    February 2nd, 2012 at 3:02 pm

    What a great interaction. It is great that you have held onto a friendship for so long. I hate to hear when friendships die off.

  4. sherri lynn

    February 2nd, 2012 at 3:11 pm

    Wow such a powerful question! I’m going to be thinking about how I want to feel in five years…

  5. Anda

    February 2nd, 2012 at 3:14 pm

    Love this post and Melanie is a babe. Great shots of her!

  6. Aisha

    February 2nd, 2012 at 3:25 pm

    He who has true friends has true riches. You are so blessed to have such amazing people in your life!. This is to security and certainty five years down the road to you all.


  7. cy gilbert

    February 2nd, 2012 at 3:33 pm

    Awesome, awesome post today, Jasmine! Your posing of Melanie is moving and so full of heart. Thank you for inspiring my life.

  8. Gabby / En Route Photography

    February 2nd, 2012 at 3:47 pm

    She is gorgeous!!!! In five years I wanna feel happy, in love, excited and yes… secure! 😉

  9. Gabriela Fuentes

    February 2nd, 2012 at 3:53 pm

    She is gorgeous!! Hopes she likes NYC… because NY rocks lol.

  10. Evie Perez

    February 2nd, 2012 at 4:08 pm

    Great pictures Jasmine!! Good luck to Melanie and her endeavors!! What a beautiful person she is.

  11. Gail

    February 2nd, 2012 at 4:12 pm

    Love how you love your besties. Mel is so beautiful. Her hair? PERFECTION.

  12. Bobbie Brown

    February 2nd, 2012 at 4:18 pm

    Oh my goodness these images are SO SO gorgeous! I am in love with every single shot! Your friend is gorgeous…love love love her hair!

  13. Emma Richards

    February 2nd, 2012 at 4:21 pm

    Your friend is incredibly beautiful!

  14. Christy

    February 2nd, 2012 at 4:24 pm

    Just BEAUTIFUL!!!! And I love that way of looking at the 5-year question! I’m always overwhelmed by it normally – but thinking how I’d like to FEEL… now that I can do! Love it!

  15. Matt

    February 2nd, 2012 at 4:25 pm

    That’s natural beauty right there, lovely.

  16. May

    February 2nd, 2012 at 4:26 pm

    I like the poses, very natural.

  17. Michelle Guzman

    February 2nd, 2012 at 4:28 pm

    These are beautiful, Jasmine. It’s so funny that I totally recognized her from your blog before. "Oh, that’s Jasmine’s friend!". 🙂 And yay for free therapy sessions with friends. 🙂

  18. Becky

    February 2nd, 2012 at 4:29 pm

    She’s beautiful! And, such a lovely description of a friendship <3

  19. Victoria Anne Photographt

    February 2nd, 2012 at 4:30 pm

    BEAUTIFUL lady! I love these portraits. So many different expressions.

    Great blog post too.. something we should all try to think about.

  20. Aisling Nelson

    February 2nd, 2012 at 4:30 pm

    Thanks Jasmine – Always great insights + emotion in your posts.

  21. Michelle Bowman

    February 2nd, 2012 at 4:38 pm

    Here’s to great friends & free therapy sessions 🙂

  22. Ginger

    February 2nd, 2012 at 4:39 pm

    Melanie has fabulous hair!!!

  23. Abby Grace

    February 2nd, 2012 at 4:44 pm

    LOVE that photo of her with both shoulders against the building. She’s beautiful!

  24. Alexandra Punales

    February 2nd, 2012 at 4:48 pm

    Question is…..Did she give you the rest of her salad! LOL. I feel the same way with my best friend. Its been 7 years so far since my sophomore year in high school. She’s recently been applying to Interior Design firms in places like NY and I dread the day she won’t be a 10 min drive away, but so happy that hopefully she and I no matter how far apart we are, will be in the right place that we (and God) want us to be.

  25. Haley Johnston

    February 2nd, 2012 at 4:52 pm

    This is beautiful!

  26. Andrea

    February 2nd, 2012 at 4:53 pm

    You have gorgeous friends! Good luck in NY Melanie.

  27. Marianne

    February 2nd, 2012 at 4:53 pm

    Love the headshot and the alley 🙂 (curious of the lighting scenario used for it) Article really made me think of where I want to be in 5 years and that is stressful 🙂 thanks for sharing!

  28. Life with Kaishon

    February 2nd, 2012 at 4:56 pm

    Holy Wow. She is so pretty. I hope she loves NYC.

  29. Kimberly

    February 2nd, 2012 at 5:08 pm

    Good luck in New York, Melanie! It’s going to be a great experience! I moved from NYC 4.5 years ago, and I miss its energy. I’m going to think about where I want to be in 5 years and how I want to feel. I think I want to feel confident in all aspects of my life. Anyway, great post, Jasmine! Beautiful photos of a beautiful friend. Oh, and those heels are to die for!

  30. Susana Cristina

    February 2nd, 2012 at 5:09 pm

    That is so true. We may not know where we will be in 5 years, but we ultimately know how we would like to feel. Thanks for the insight into your free therapy session and congrats to Mel on the move! I am sure that Skype will make it easier on you both!

  31. Shanna

    February 2nd, 2012 at 5:09 pm

    <3 !

  32. Bianca

    February 2nd, 2012 at 5:11 pm

    Do you remember that one time I saved your life when we were 11 and you almost drowned in Sarah Ruffner’s pool? Yeah, you owe me head shots. But I want to look like Mel 😉

  33. Erin Oveis Brant

    February 2nd, 2012 at 5:19 pm

    Yes!! Love the sentiment (that’s a five year goal strategy even I could deal with) and Melanie is GORGEOUS! dang.

  34. Amy Jo

    February 2nd, 2012 at 5:22 pm

    Good luck in NY Melanie, and, you are seriously pretty. Jasmine, these head shots rock, (sometimes it is good to leave your niche for a minute to help a friend. 🙂 ) and I have no doubt you both will be toasting again in 5 years about your success.

  35. Kay Sandifer

    February 2nd, 2012 at 5:24 pm

    She is beautiful! Friends like her are gifts from God. So sounds like God has blessed you both with great gifts!:)

  36. dana

    February 2nd, 2012 at 5:25 pm

    these images are absolutely stunning…& real…& perfect!!! LOVE the snippet of your conversation too! 😉 blessings,dana

  37. Tiffany Farley

    February 2nd, 2012 at 5:31 pm

    Love this! And the shots are gorgeous!

  38. Carolyn Himes

    February 2nd, 2012 at 5:34 pm

    Your friendship and the images you created with her are brilliant! Loved this blog post, what a great message!

  39. Meghan

    February 2nd, 2012 at 5:37 pm

    Girlfriends are the best! She rocks those photos! And what a great way to look at the "where in 5 years" way of thinking. I might just do that too.

  40. jessica vidmar photography

    February 2nd, 2012 at 6:04 pm

    I don’t know Jasmine…you may have a new career ahead of you as a wedding AND portrait photographer : ) Those pics are GORGEOUS!!

  41. Michelle Feeney

    February 2nd, 2012 at 6:06 pm

    Great post J and good luck Melanie! 🙂

  42. Michel

    February 2nd, 2012 at 6:07 pm

    why is it alleys always have the most amazing light!? she is a beauty, good luck in the big apple Mel!

  43. corey

    February 2nd, 2012 at 6:23 pm

    Wow, J great portraits of Melanie she is beautiful…

  44. Tami Inoue

    February 2nd, 2012 at 6:30 pm

    Wow. What a great way to think about it…I loved this. Thanks for posting it.

  45. LEOLAK

    February 2nd, 2012 at 7:57 pm

    Wow..this is great! Great friends are wonderful aren’t they?! =) Oh and seriously, is it a rule to be GORGEOUS to hang in your group! LOL I swear all of you are absolutely STUNNING! (yes, I realize this may sound stalkerish but I can’t help you post group pics to Tweeter and such lol). This is a such a great way to think about things. Much LUCK to you Melanie in NYC!!!

  46. Alaina Bos

    February 2nd, 2012 at 8:00 pm

    She is breath-taking. I love how natural and effortlessly beautiful she looks!! Also, I miss my best friend now 😉 I hope Melanie LOVES New York! I know I do!!

  47. Cristal

    February 2nd, 2012 at 8:01 pm

    She is absolutely GORG!!

  48. Adriana Morett

    February 2nd, 2012 at 8:03 pm

    I love these shots! Melanie is SO beautiful, she’s going to OWN NYC… Just a quick q for you… did you use the lighten/dodge tool over her face or is that all natural light and natural reflectors? Thanks so much J*.

  49. Shannon of ** Happiness Is...**

    February 2nd, 2012 at 8:29 pm

    Aw, Melstar. Miss her face. Beautiful portraits of her Jasmine. You captured her spirit perfectly. xo

  50. Kathy

    February 2nd, 2012 at 8:30 pm

    She is straight gorgeous!

  51. Shannon Von Eschen

    February 2nd, 2012 at 8:40 pm

    Oh my gosh Bianca’s comment is awesome! But good grief you are all three drop dead gorgeous!! xx

  52. Christa

    February 2nd, 2012 at 9:08 pm

    A free therapy session AND gorgeous photos too…this is the ultimate blog post 🙂 PS I wanna feel secure too.

  53. Leanne Wight

    February 2nd, 2012 at 9:22 pm

    Wow, Melanie is really beautiful! What a great question to ask ourselves from time to time, How do we want to feel in 5 yrs? Hmmm…I’ll be pondering this one for a while. Thanks Jasmine and best of luck to Melanie in NY.

  54. Alicia

    February 2nd, 2012 at 10:02 pm

    Oh wow, she is sooo gorgeous! That first shot is so fun! Love the energy in it!

  55. Bec

    February 2nd, 2012 at 10:18 pm

    Isn’t funny how we can get so bogged down looking at the world/future from only one perspective. How simple is that question, (and easy!) to have only changed just one word. I can so easily answer how I want to FEEL in 5 years. It’s almost like, not knowing what you want, but knowing what you DON’T want. Thanks for the sweet and thought provoking post, and if I had a stunner friend like Mel, you can be sure I’d be doing headshots!

  56. Brianna

    February 2nd, 2012 at 10:29 pm

    Jeally!!! What happened to my pictures in the field, anyway?! I know I got some favors comin my way 😉

  57. Eileen

    February 2nd, 2012 at 10:36 pm

    I will double that RAWR.. she is stunningly beautiful!!!!

  58. Tiffany Russell

    February 2nd, 2012 at 10:38 pm

    These are absolutely beautiful. So glad you share with us so that we have a chance to learn from the wonder that you create!

  59. Corinna

    February 2nd, 2012 at 11:23 pm

    Wow, Melanie is gorgeous… hope everything goes well for her in NY.

  60. Papi

    February 2nd, 2012 at 11:33 pm

    Amazing shots, Fathead. WOW. No, really…WOW. (Mel, Millie and I love you. And we wish you God’s speed. I have beaucoup friends in NYC, most are NYPD & FDNY. You ever need anything, give me a holla).

  61. Doerthe

    February 3rd, 2012 at 12:18 am

    Thanks, Jasmine, I needed that!

  62. Phil

    February 3rd, 2012 at 1:51 am

    Hey, Mel! How is it seeing a note from your uncle on Jasmine’s blog? Enjoy NYC! Jasmine, my daughter’s are silent fans of yours – keep up the great creativity and artistry!

  63. Nicole Swenson

    February 3rd, 2012 at 1:52 am

    I am in LOVE with this post! It’s a thinker and the photos are stunning. Thank you so much for sharing. It made me think of my BFF! The images are A.M.A.Z.I.N.G!!! WOWwwwza!
    Did you use a flash?
    Thanks for always making my day 🙂

  64. Bimal

    February 3rd, 2012 at 2:52 am

    Sheer awesomeness. Thanks for the wonderful therapy session Mel and Jas!

  65. Lo

    February 3rd, 2012 at 6:27 am

    Love my Mel. . .thanks, Jasmine, for sharing the photos. . . 🙂

  66. jo ann

    February 3rd, 2012 at 4:22 pm

    She is incredibly beautiful…I hope that NYC is more than wonderful to her.

  67. Cathy

    February 3rd, 2012 at 6:17 pm

    J* it’s a shame you aren’t shooting portraits any longer. I think these are lovely.

  68. Erin Hernandez-Reisner

    February 3rd, 2012 at 6:26 pm

    This is really pretty! I love her hair. Beautiful pics.

  69. cassandra-m

    February 3rd, 2012 at 8:34 pm

    Absolutely b-e-a-u-t-i-f-u-l !!!

  70. Tim Gilbertson

    February 4th, 2012 at 2:47 am

    Nice photos!

  71. Yarra Valley Wedding Photography

    February 5th, 2012 at 8:35 am

    Gorgeous! Photography and model!

  72. Mireya

    February 5th, 2012 at 5:30 pm

    Thank you for the free therapy session haha

  73. welmoet

    February 5th, 2012 at 6:15 pm

    Melanie and your shots of her are gorgeous. What a wonderful friendship you share.

  74. Hannes Uys

    February 5th, 2012 at 8:45 pm

    Killer heels!!

  75. Mike

    February 6th, 2012 at 3:43 am

    I love the curly hair! Great shots. Very crisp and clean. She seems to stand out in the images.

  76. Esquissewei

    February 7th, 2012 at 10:53 am

    Nice portraits Jasmine. Simple, natural and fresh 🙂

  77. Jose Chiyah

    February 11th, 2012 at 11:18 am

    Very nice pictures, i love it

  78. Dianne

    February 14th, 2012 at 4:41 am

    Killer shots! How could you not do a head shot for her? She’s beautiful. And she’s a fab friend. And of course, the English Honors thing. And ditto on the thanks for free therapy. 🙂

  79. Marian Majik

    February 16th, 2012 at 9:49 pm

    GREAT SHOTS! …and maybe she is thankful be your friend too… 😉

  80. Bo

    May 3rd, 2016 at 1:12 pm

    You made her look good and you seem to have caught her smiling in a way that attracts the men 🙂