CLINTON – Jennifer Freitas enjoys taking portraits — of children, couples, families and pets.
Freitas began her journey in photography by photo-documenting the life of her first puppy, Goliath, and then his adopted brother, Goose. When her first-born “two-legged son” Lucien arrived, she took a “bajillion photos” of him as a baby, she said. But all these pictures were “from a not very good cell phone” and were not of good quality.
When Freitas was pregnant four years ago with her second son, Daemon, she was given a DSLR (digital single-lens reflex) camera. Freitas realized she “could never go back to cell phone images.”
After her father died and she realized the lack of quality photographs of him, documenting the love for family – no matter how many legs they have – became her mission.
“It takes a memory to look back and remember your 11-year-old dog without the grays or your son’s curls before his first haircut,” Freitas said.
After realizing how much she enjoyed using the DSLR, Freitas asked all her friends and family to help her practice, and she soon decided she wanted to take up photography professionally.
A year after starting digital photography, with several workshops and educational groups under her belt, Freitas received her business certificate and started Emerald Moon Photography.
Freitas grew up in Medford but moved to Clinton six years ago to her new husband’s home. She met her husband, Jody, in the Army National Guard, but they didn’t become a couple until they both left the military and stayed in touch as friends. Their sons are now a 6-year-old in first grade and an almost 4-year-old preschooler.
“Our bed almost always has at least one dog and one kid,” Freitas said. But she said she wouldn’t change being a dog mom or a boy mom for anything in the world.
She laughed, adding: “My eldest already has ‘photographer’s child syndrome’. It’s where they despise having their picture taken because their parent got an endless supply.”
As a mother, Freitas enjoys the control over her schedule that comes with photography and owning her own small business. But most of all, she enjoys being involved in creating images of other people’s loved ones to give them memories they can look at for the rest of their lives, “giving people something that is indeed forever” which is not attained. worn, used or obsolete.
The downside is that sometimes “nothing works” to get a child, teenager or pet to engage with it or the camera; Freitas still feels bad when that happens, even though she knows that “you really can’t control your subject” for portraits.
Freitas said that “it’s heartbreaking when you see a beautiful person, but that person doesn’t like themselves in the picture”, although she thinks it’s “pretty hypocritical”. Like many people who spend a lot of time behind the camera, she feels the same way.
“But I know that seeing a picture of yourself that you think looks great is a great feeling,” she said.
Freitas said she also enjoys looking at the photos she’s taken, “ohh-ing and aww-ing out loud in my office” when she sees them for the first time.
Freitas said there is always more to learn with photography. It’s “something you can keep learning about and improving endlessly,” she said. She likes to “spend time learning more techniques and better ways of doing things every day.”
Her goal is to be a full-time photographer, but Freitas currently works for an environmental company in the construction field as an inspector and project monitor.
Freitas also takes pictures for charity, especially the Clinton VFW. She and her husband are both veterans, and her husband has held positions at the city, county and state levels.
“Veterans’ issues are important to us,” Freitas said.
She has also published photographs of children and families in magazines such as Designer Child, Youthful Talent, Brand Model, Rising Model and Pretty Little Poser. Now that COVID is less of an issue, Freitas would like to do some shows of her photography.
Freitas advertises that she is a “woman, veteran, and LGBT-owned business” and is part of business associations for being female, bisexual, and having proudly served her country.
Her photography studio is in Boxborough (“just one exit up I-495,” she said).
When not taking pictures or honing her craft, Freitas said she enjoys reading, anime, “trying to learn Japanese,” camping (especially campfires), riding motorcycles, fishing, fireworks, zombies, playing every Zelda that has been released and “dogs, dogs and dogs.”
Freitas’ website is www.emeraldmoonphotography.com. Her Facebook is www.facebook.com/EmeraldMoonPhotographyMA, and her Instagram is @emeraldmoon_photography. You can email her at [email protected]