Tabetha Jones has recently decided to start yet another illegal business. This time, it’s a photography company that she’s talked her sister into claiming ownership of, called The Phoenix Effect photography.
How dare I call it an illegal company? Well, I dare because it’s true, for the same reasons that her bogus publishing company isn’t legal, either. But we’ll get to that later.
Let’s start with the Phoenix Effect home page.
Here alone, we see evidence that this is Tabetha’s baby. Listing herself as the Effect’s leading model shows that the whole endeavor is little more than an ego stroke, a vehicle for Tabetha (as Zoey Sweete) to preen herself as a model, coupled with the fact that 90% of the pictures are of her. It’s just ego-spank for her.
I think the most disturbing thing she says on the front page is that they “do not discriminate against size, race, sexuality, or age.” The mere fact that she mentions any of those things is discriminatory. Why would any photographer even THINK about refusing to photograph anybody based on those criteria, let alone feel the need to deny it so vehemently on the front page of their supposedly professional website? If I saw that on anybody’s site, it would tell me that yes they do, or they wouldn’t have brought it up. I don’t want to work with anybody that even thinks of it.
By trying to include so many styles of photography as a selling point, and going out of her way to appeal to everybody, she’s shooting herself in the foot. If I’m looking for a photographer to take pictures of my six year old, the last one I’m going to choose is the one that has the words “deviant” and “fetish” in the same sentence as “family portraits.” Only in her deluded little world do those styles belong on the same page, let alone in the same sentence. But, hey. It’s her company to ruin.
And, seriously… their LEADING model, Zoey Sweete? Really? Show me ONE publication her picture has appeared in. Show me ANYWHERE that her pictures have appeared that weren’t her own websites. Unless she can do that, she’s got no business calling herself a model at all, let alone anybody’s leading anything.
Never mind that ZOEY SWEETE DOES NOT EXIST.
Next, have a gander at the site’s nav bar.
As usual, she leads with smut. She’s got the “Boudior” shots, “sexy and sensual” front and center. All other settings (couples, single shots, etc) are tucked away under “other” There’s Tabetha’s sleazy mentality for you, glorifying the filthy first and putting all other considerations aside.
Next, let’s take a look at the “about” page.
This is a jumble of hot mess. First, she does little but repeat what was already said on the front page. If she can’t come up with anything new to say about the company, what does it really have to offer? If the site can’t be original, how will the photos be?
Again, she contradicts herself. First she says that “Phoenix Effect does not use photoshop to edit our photographs, we believe in using the right lighting and poses to give you the best look.”
And in the next sentence, that they “enhance the photographs that are chosen, whether it be to soften, colorize, add borders or add text to the pictures.”
So do they photoshop or not?
I can help answer that one.
On the Phoenix Effects FB page, there’s (at least) one album with manipulated photos in it. So there’s a glaring example of either an inept contradiction or a flat-out lie.
And here, again, Tabetha refers to Zoey Sweete as a person separate from herself. As with her bogus publishing company, it looks like she’s trying to bolster the company with more personnel than it really has, and to glorify herself as something she’s not. Model, author, editor, publisher, all the things she wishes she was, but fails miserably at because she thinks that wishing it makes it so. It doesn’t.
Just take a look at what she says about herself on the “about us” page.
She refers to herself as the company’s manager, and a makeup artist and hair stylist that’s been “in the industry” for the last 13 years.
What industry? Lying and scamming?
What photographers and models has she worked with in the last 13 years?
Even if she has been involved with cosmetology for a number of years, that doesn’t mean that she’s been “in the industry” for 13 years. That’s an exaggeration to make herself seem more experienced “in the industry” than she really is.
And, excuse me, but I thought she’s been “busting her ass” to make authors’ dreams come true as a publisher for the last 4 or 5 years, selflessly losing sleep, spending money out of her pocket, dedicating herself tirelessly to serving her authors. How is that being involved with the modeling industry?
She’s only been trying to pass herself off as a model for the last few months. That’s a fact. No modeling pictures of her appear before that. Not that any real ones have appeared since. She hasn’t been involved “in the industry” at all, in any capacity. It’s just another lie. More wishful thinking that she’s involved with any industry she glamorizes, when the truth is she’s nothing but a wannabe.
As for Dee:
There are two points of interest in Dee’s blurb. First, she contradicts herself badly. She says that she “allows the model to be themselves without direction, giving the models freedom, unless she believes a better pose would work for that particular shot.”
So which is it? Does she direct her models or not?
I’m willing to bet that there isn’t a professional photographer in the industry that doesn’t direct the models during a shoot. It’s their reputation on the line every time a photograph they took is published anywhere, including somebody’s facebook page, and I can’t think of a single photog that would leave their reputations vulnerable to the whims of some amateur wannabe model that has no idea whatsoever how to pose for a professional shot. Of course real photographers direct their models, from the most seasoned professional model down to a two year old with the Easter Bunny. After all, isn’t it up to the photographer to get the best shots? Of course it is. If somebody’s just going to pose any old way they want, what do they need to pay a professional photographer for? They can snap a selfie for free.
Secondly, Tab goes out of her way to distance herself from any ownership in the company by insisting that Dee is the sole owner. Which is why Tabetha runs the sites, the facebook, uploads the photos and does all of the online work. Every word.
No? Have a look at their FB.
In at least one spot, Tabetha posts under the Phoenix Effect account, identifying herself as Zoey Sweete.
And in at least one album, Tabetha speaks in the first person about her daughter, and her daughter’s photos in the album description.
I’d be hard-pressed to find anywhere that Tabetha DIDN’T do all the posting. I really have to wonder if Dee does anything in that company except show up with a camera to photograph her half-naked sister flopping around on the couch. That does not a modeling company make.
But, if it really is Dee’s dream to become a professional photographer, I say go for it. But she should do it without the swindling fingers of Tabetha Jones in her pocket. Instead, she should do the real work it takes to become a professional within the industry. She should take photography classes and learn about composition, lighting, the proper equipment and everything else it takes to be the real deal. And she needs to learn about posing. REAL, professional poses, not the shtick they don’t even do in sears catalogs anymore. I don’t say that to be cruel. I say that as an encouragement for her to put in the work and preparation it takes to be a real professional in the industry, if that’s really what she wants to do. If all she’s got going for her right now is her sister blowing smoke up her ass and telling her that she’s better than she is in order to get her to front a company for her, she needs to step away. The last thing anybody needs is to get caught up in one of Tabetha’s bogus companies.
I said I’d get back to why this company is as illegal as Tabetha’s other company. It’s simple. A sole proprietorship cannot have employees. Not an assistant, manager, stylist or anything else. If it does, it needs to file the proper taxation paperwork, and I’m willing to bet dollars to donuts that Tab has convinced Dee that it’s not necessary, so she hasn’t. That’s tax fraud, and if the company gets investigated for it (and something tells me it will), it’ll be Dee that takes the fall for it. The company’s in her name, not Tabetha’s.
This isn’t the first time Tabetha’s used a family name in business, is it? Starting with the fact that her bogus publishing company is under her birth mother’s name, not her own. Why? To evade taxes? And let’s not forget Cindy Carlo’s involvement in Zephyr (however they spelled it) and Mystic Press, clusterfuck that it was. Seems Tab has this habit of setting the people in her family up to throw under the bus when the shit hits the fan. And in this case, she’s got a family member willing to put the whole company under her name so that she herself can walk away squeaky clean.
My advice to Dee is this: RUN. If Tabetha Jones is anywhere near a company, it’s bound to be crooked.