Friday, December 27, 2013

New Year, New Website Giveaway

The new Jody Mack Photography website is live! There you will find lots of new photos in the portfolio section (Newborn, Maternity, Family, Child) and lots of helpful information about sessions, including a new FAQ page and Testimonials from previous and current clients.

To celebrate the new website, I will be giving away a FREE 30 minute mini-session (a $250 value) and an 8 x 10 gallery wrapped canvas (a $140 value) from your session! Current 2014 clients who have already booked a full session can also enter for the free canvas and a bonus 30 minute mini session!

Here's how you enter:

"Like" Jody Mack Photography's Facebook page, share this post on Facebook (see link below) and add a comment below this post as to why you want/need a photo session with me in 2014. Participants will be entered in a random drawing (powered by The winner will be announced on January 15th! 

Share the love!

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Sharp Dressed Fam - Lifestyle Family Beach Session

Love the colors, the warmth and the joy that this family brought to their beach session! Their little boy was so happy and energetic (although, he was a bit distracted by the concurrent Santa mini-sessions going on nearby - but who could blame him?)

I love the moment where he looks like he's going to throw a rock at the Morris Island Lighthouse (bottom left). Go for it, buddy! You never know until you try!

This beautiful mama is expecting a sweet little bundle in March that I can't wait to meet and photograph.

Happy Holidays and Best Wishes {D} family!

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Lifestyle Newborn Photography

I gravitate toward what is real and genuine about each person I photograph. Lifestyle photography helps capture the essence of each person or family in their own unique way. Using the available light, furniture and items in the clients' own home helps me create one-of-a kind sessions.

Here are two recent lifestyle newborn sessions, one sweet little girl and one adorable boy.

I can (and do) stare at sleeping newborns for hours at a time. There is so much peace in their little faces.

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Feeling the Love

My last mini-session of 2013 was the perfect ending to a great season!
4 Kids + Lots of Energy + 2 Loving Parents = Crazy Good Fun
Thank you everyone for an awesome year!

Sunday, November 17, 2013

The winner of the 2013 Food Drive Drawing is.....

Many, many thanks to the participants of this year's Food Drive to benefit the Lowcountry Food Bank! 

The random drawing for the FREE photo session (powered by the turned up participant #8, which was.... drumroll please....

the McManus Family! 


For those of you who are still interested in contributing items to this awesome organization, please use the "Virtual Food Drive" link below. Thanks for making a difference for these families!

Friday, November 8, 2013

Sometimes, children make the best teachers

Meet Conor.  

He's a handsome and active, 8-year old boy who loves sports, surfing, and - like any boy his age - provoking his older sister.  I had the opportunity to get to know Conor and his family at a photo shoot on Folly Beach, one of their favorite family hangouts. 

What you don't see, at first glance, is that Conor has been fighting neurofibromatosis and endured multiple surgeries to combat this condition for most of his life. What you do get at first glance is a boy that is full of life, love and positive energy.  

Whether or not he realized it, I left that session "schooled."  Conor and his family taught me a huge lesson in such a short time.  

Live in the present moment. 
Be present.
Enjoy your family and the people around you. 
Be grateful. Be happy. 
More importantly, be happy to be YOU. 
There is no one else in the world like you.

Conor's condition has required multiple surgeries, including the removal of his right eye.  He has yet another surgery coming up at the end of this month. Please read more about Conor's story on his YouCaring website and give to his medical fund if you are able. 

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

The Belly Project | Week 25

In attempt to capture my growing belly have been thwarted by several forces - one of which is packing  for an upcoming move to a bigger house. 

Kind of a bittersweet goodbye to this house of 8 years (amazing how much STUFF you accumulate over time).  So many memories were made here: from hosting dinner parties, to pacing up and down the hardwoods with a newborn over the shoulder, to reading goodnight stories in the nursery rocking chair, to toddlers jumping on our bed, laughing hysterically.

As the packed boxes pile up and framed photographs are taken down, this place is starting to feel weird and uncomfortable for all of us (even the dog).

Instead of waiting for the chaos of moving to subside, I decided to use a few tools to set up some shots on our porch and in a rare vacant corner of our living room.  A camera, a tripod, a remote shutter release... and someone to push the shutter release. So, I entrusted this task to my eager snap-happy children.

All of these images were taken by either my 3-year-old or my 6-year-old.

It went something like this:

"Logan, that's enough for now"
"Okay, time to give Avery a turn"

I will cherish these.  Someday,  their younger sibling will too.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Welcome to the world, little one!

A brand new, sweet, cuddly and downright adorable baby girl was born this week.  She reminds me so much of her big sister (who I also have had the privilege of photographing since her birth).  She definitely has her own unique personality and was a dream to work with!

Congratulations {D} family!

In-home, Lifestyle Newborn Photography, Charleston, South Carolina

Friday, September 6, 2013

Oh, Baby!

This week, I finally had a chance to catch up on editing from this summer's Bump Meet Baby newborn workshops. Now that I've seen so many newborns from interning with Tamara Hart, it's amazing to step back and watch her teach other photographers the craft of newborn photography. There are lots of photography workshops out there, but the quality, the small class size and the hands on experience that Tamara's bring to the table is unmatched.  Each student gets to pose and photograph her own newborn "model."

Here are some shots I was able to grab from this July's workshop:

Working with my new 100mm Macro lens (okay, new to me... thanks to Clay Austin of Clay Austin Photography for parting with it... I will take good care of it!)

I love this little guy's expressions! Priceless....

And a "behind the scenes" view. Tamara with workshop attendees, Janice Jones (of Janice Jones Photography and fellow Carolina Gamecock fan) and Suri Moonsinghe (of Honeydew Photography). 

More newborn photos from August's workshop coming soon!

Monday, August 26, 2013

Summer's End

I adore this family. (Not just because they are simply adorable). I have known them for quite a while and it has been an honor to watch their bright blue-eyed little boy grow!

One of my favorite things about photographing a family (whether I've known them forever, or just a short time) is seeing their personalities come alive and capturing their interactions - both with the environment around them and each other. 

The best moments are real moments. This is my passion. I am honored and humbled to be a part of this everyday.

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Holiday Mini-Sessions

What you get:

  • 45 minute photo session (for a family of up to 5 people) on the beautiful grounds of Boone Hall Plantation (shown above).
  • 15 hand-edited, high-resolution images in color and black & white with a print release. 
  • The ability to give back: Families that bring 5 non-perishible items for the Lowcountry Food Bank will receive a free 8 x 10 print. 
Holiday sessions will be available to a limited number of clients each day to give you the best quality photos that I can provide for your family (and also get your photos turned around within a week, so you can make your holiday card deadlines).

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

We are family (sing it!)

I adore families that are as laid back and fun-loving as these people! The group of them reunited at Seabrook Island to celebrate their mother, Bonnie Compton's, 29th birthday (or an anniversary thereof...).  I won't give away your exact age, Bonnie! You look amazing and your children are as beautiful as you are, inside and out!

You can listen to Bonnie on her WebTalk Radio program "Whole-Hearted Parenting" HERE and her interview with me about my career change HERE.

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Little boy blue

There is something about the sweet newness of a newborn baby.  Sometimes they even fall asleep and let you take photographs like these...

Monday, July 8, 2013

Brand-New Arrival

It's an amazing (and nerve-wracking) feeling to photograph another photographer. But, Kate and Adam, extraordinary photographers of the Pizzlets in Beaufort, SC, were so sweet, genuine and fun-loving  (despite their lack of sleep) that I was quickly put at ease. That, and I was accompanied by a mutual friend and fabulous photographer, Tamara Hart of Bump Meet Baby

Photographed here are some first family moments for the second daughter, Little Miss {C}, born to the wonderful photographers, Kate & Adam, of the Pizzlets in Beaufort, SC.  

Before she met her new baby sister, Little Miss {A} had a few quiet moments to reconnect with mum (not a typo, Kate is English) and open her present: a "Big Sis" tee-shirt.

Then, the big moment... Baby {C} was rolled into the room by the nurse, and Big Sister {A} could not contain her joy!

Kate's parents were also there to meet and snuggle with their new granddaughter. I absolutely love to photograph newborns, but especially across the generations. 

Sweet moments to remember for a lifetime. Never again will she be this small, this new. I am honored to have helped capture it.

Congratulations to the whole family on your brand-new arrival! Little Miss {C} is a lucky little girl to have such a wonderful family! 

Saturday, June 29, 2013

On the Road with Michele Anderson: Pinkle Toes Workshop Charlotte, NC

A-mazing... I had a rare opportunity to learn from one of the very best lifestyle photographers - Michele Anderson of Pinkle Toes Photography (Austin, TX). If you don't know who she is, you should! There are no words... Thank you, Michele!
These are shots I was able to capture from the urban maternity session.  This couple was absolutely adorable. (And no, they are not models - just beautiful, normal people.) 

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Happy Mother's Day!

In celebration of all moms everywhere. May you enjoy the memories you make this Mother's Day! Here are some of the highlights from this year's Mommy & Me Event.  Thanks to all of the beautiful moms (who usually hide behind their cameras) and their delightful little ones!

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Shut the front door and crack the window

Everywhere I go, I see stories that need telling in photographs, children that grow up before my eyes and fleeting moments that need capturing. Photography has been a hobby for a very long time, but become much more a part of my life over the past 6 years, since the birth of my first daughter.  In a way, it has been a malnourished part of the creative side of me. There is never enough time in the day to take the photographs I see, to learn new ways to present these images and to shoot just for the sake of shooting.  

My nose has been too close to the grindstone of my "ultimate career goal" (says the cover letter) of being a tenure track faculty at a primarily undergraduate institution. This is the path I chose for myself when I was fresh out of college. A 20-something who dreamed of having a small biomedical research lab and teaching wonderful, meaningful and thought-provoking lecture and lab courses.  

Enter reality. The number of Ph.D. graduates and postdoctoral fellows (graduates with way too much training) far outnumber faculty positions in a bottleneck of epic proportions. Many people on the academic track, particularly those with young families, are having to choose other avenues to make ends meet. Like so many other specialized jobs, getting the right fit at the right time is a game of chance. Landing the right job takes an immense amount of patience and an ability to pack up and move absolutely anywhere. It also takes a love of science that far transcends my own. 

It became clear to me that I was headed down the wrong path. Science became an obligation rather than a passion. In the midst of working as a temporary faculty member,  I found myself falling asleep putting lectures together but staying awake to edit photos into the wee hours of the morning; riding into work anticipating the lighting in my next photo shoot instead of thinking about writing my next lecture or what experiment to try next.

My options became:
1. Move our whole family to wherever-I-get-a-job and miss my children growing up.  
2. Stay in Charleston, wait for my ship to come in while fighting for adjunct scraps off the academic sow - and still miss my children growing up. 
3. Become a photographer, do what I love, get paid to do it and be there for my kids. 

My choice was simple (of course, starting a small business is not simple and being a professional photographer is not all roses). There were a few defining moments involved in this decision, one of which was last spring. 

I was running around like the proverbial chicken. There I was, in the midst of a faculty job search, running a massive research project and teaching 4 lab sections as an adjunct. I felt exhausted, overwhelmed and horribly guilty for missing so much time with my kids. After coming home late (again) one night, I went to tuck my daughters into bed.  Right after my husband came by to give my 4-year-old daughter a goodnight kiss, I asked her,   

“Do you know your Daddy loves you?”
“Yeah,” she replied with a sleepy smile.

Feeling guilty and jealous of the abundant time my husband had with the two of them, I needed some validation that I was doing something right. Maybe it wasn’t being there to pick you up from ballet class, maybe it wasn’t when you needed help putting on your doll’s dress, maybe it wasn’t when you needed me to make your dinner or give you a bath - but I’m here now…  

So, I asked her, 
“Do you know your Mommy loves you?”
After a long pause, she said, 
“Mommy… why do you have so much work time?”

My heart dropped to the floor. 

Not long after,  I was catching up on email's during my early morning coffee and came across Angie Mizzell’s Blog Post

One excerpt jumped off the page at me:

"Everything looked good on paper, but I felt completely lost without a sense of personal or professional direction. I felt stuck. I felt trapped. I worried that the ladder to success led to misery and that one day, I’d reach the top with a shiny resume and a hole in my soul."

I sobbed like a baby. How can I look at my girls and say that “you can do whatever you want to in life” or “follow your happiness” when they are making career decisions when I can’t take my own advice? How can I reply to the question, “why do you have so much work time?” when I don’t have the answer for myself?

But the guilt. Ah…. the guilt of betraying all of the time and energy spent toward this goal I set for myself in my twenties. In the end, we all face choices.  This choice came with a lot of soul-searching (some guts) and the tireless moral support of my husband and family.

I chose to follow my happiness. 

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Giving Back

Do you know a family that deserves a complimentary photo session and 8 x 10 framed print? Now through March 10, 2013, I will be accepting nominations. Please click the "Contact" button (above) to email me their story.

The family will be chosen and contacted by March 17th.  

Thank you in advance for your nominations. Please share this post with your friends and family. Everyone deserves to have their family memories captured.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

An afternoon with the baby whisperer, Tamara Hart

Last weekend, I had a wonderful opportunity to be mentored by one of my new photography friends, who happens to be one of the finest birth, newborn and maternity photographers in the southeast: Tamara Hart of Bump Meet Baby Photography.  Tamara has been photographing newborns for several years and has mastered the art of posing these sweet bundles into the most beautiful human sculptures.
The photos below were captured by me, but the set, natural lighting design and posing were done by Tamara.  The shoot was complemented by Tamara's assistant photographer, Theresa and good friend, Michelle of Michelle Ann Photography. I loved their enthusiasm and joy in what they do! Awesome people. Great mentoring. Stunning photography. Many thanks, Tamara!


Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Why I love to photograph newborns

No matter what is going on in our crazy world,  
No matter the circumstance,  no matter the illness,
No matter the trouble that lies ahead,
Life persists.
A new beginning is happening somewhere every day.