Friday, January 18, 2008

New Traditions.

One of my grandfather’s traditions was to give gifts on his birthday. He would say “It’s my birthday and I’m glad you’re here to celebrate it with me. Why should I get all the gifts?” I miss him. I’ve always thought that was a great idea. And I have to admit, I looked forward to his birthdays.

So taking a page from Grandpa Martin, I’d like to start a new tradition. For my birthday each year (starting today), I’d like to give a gift to someone who might need one. This year, my gift is to give someone my services for their wedding for FREE….

Last year, when fellow photographer Jessica Claire announced she was giving her services away to someone who most deserved it, I thought that was awesome and a great way to “pay it forward”. I don’t think she’ll mind (which is why I’m giving her credit), but I’d like to “judge” this process in the same way she did.

What I am looking for:

I am looking for a couple who was wronged by the local behemoth, Celebration Studios.

Celebration Studios has left thousands of couples out in the cold and it breaks my heart. Celebration Studios has left a black mark on our industry and what they’ve done to these couples is a terrible reflection on our craft.

While we (local photographers) had nothing to do with this and owe nothing to those left stranded by CS, I can’t help but feel for these poor people who’ve been robbed. I can’t help everyone, but I can help one couple. I challenge my colleagues to do the same….

If you have been wronged by Celebrations Studios and are a couple who just cannot by any means afford to hire a new photographer, please email me your story with a photo to:

The winner will receive:

10 hours wedding day coverage
An online gallery for sharing and/or ordering pictures + DVD with images
40 page 9.5X13 GraphiStudio album

The top three entries will be posted on this blog on what would have been my father’s 65th birthday, February 11th 2008.

The winner will be chosen by me and a few of my colleagues.

Please grant my birthday wish which is to bring some joy to a very sad situation. I look forward to hearing from you.


Blogger Chris+Lynn said...

What a wonderful gift to give! Happy b-day to a guy with a big heart.

11:27 AM  
Blogger Frank DiMeo said...

Dude (:
Happy Birthday!

This is a wonderful thing to offer Jason. I'm sure someone is going to be very very happy that you came into their lives and did this for them.

5:19 PM  
Blogger erich camping said...

Happy Birthday Jason! You are a amazing person for thinking of others. You are literally make dreams come true!

1:08 AM  
Blogger Wendy said...

Bravo, Jason! And... Happy Birthday!! What a lovely and selfless thing to do for someone. I am a planner in Philadelphia and have never used that photographer for my clients. But, I read a lot of bad stuff on the local boards about them. It's a shame that there are people like that out there preying on young couples! that is one of the reasons I love what I do. I can recommend people like you instead!!! Thanks for paying it forward.

9:49 PM  
Blogger Jeff said...

Jason, Generosity obviously runs deep in your family. Your willingness to give and make right a wrong stands out as an example for all of us. Having personally experienced your generosity I am proud to call you a friend and I am sure your grandfather is smiling. Happy Birthday! -Jeff

12:44 PM  
Blogger Dustin Izatt said...


You are my hero and I think this is so thoughtful of you. What a horrible thing for all of those couples and what a blessing for those who will receiver you gift. You are an awesome photographer and even more of an awesome person.


2:27 PM  
Blogger Darius said...

Wow, that is great of you and a true reflection of how we should relate to each other. I just happened upon this blog through DWF and wouldn't you know my birthday is also Feb 11th! Your dad MUST have been great person.
So in honor of your father and your generosity and because I am a huge fan of birthdays and think your idea is great, I will be giving away a session in my hometown to a deserving client. Just my way of giving a birthday present to the world. Thanks for the inspiration!

2:59 PM  
Blogger jason groupp said...

Thanks everyone for your nice comments!

Darius - that is AWESOME!! It would make my Dad happy to hear about your offer! Thank YOU for the inspiration. Happy early birthday to you!

3:09 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Many warm wishes to you! What a wonderful thing you have chosen to do and I am truely inspired by your generosity!

6:05 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

What a great gift!!! Your Dad would be proud!

7:28 PM  
Blogger Wendy said...

Whoever Darius is, the gods are smiling on you as well!! I know how hard you all work and how expensive what you is! I hope our paths cross one day and I get the chance to recommend you to one of my clients!!!

9:38 PM  
Anonymous Tim Halberg said...

Very cool!! Sounds like a GREAT plan! That's gnarly about celebrations studio... Glad to see someone doing something good about it!

9:48 PM  
Anonymous weddingcrazy08 said...

What an awesome thing you are doing! And being one of the brides left hanging by Celebration Studios, I have to say that it's refreshing that this is not just something you are doing this one time, but something you have done in the past! I wish there were more genuine people like you in the world!
Luckily, I haven't given ALL my money to CS. We are fortunate enough to have figured out a way to replace our photographer in enough time for our wedding. I hope that you are able to help someone else in my situation who is really stuck.

12:13 PM  
Anonymous eye4weddings said...

What a great idea, I'm inspired by your story to do the same thing for a couple in need.

9:11 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


Your grandfather would be so proud of you!!! Happy Birthday!

11:35 PM  
Blogger Jacob Bergmeier said...

That's awesome of you Jason. My wife and I actually met with them but decided against them after meeting the person we choose. It's great to know there are photographers who are willing to stem up and help out.

8:28 AM  

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