All Photos by The Jessica Martin Photography & Films
This week we’re sitting down with Jessica Martin of The Jessica Martin Photography & Films. You’ll be seeing a lot more of Jessica’s work around here – she just took some great photos of my family and I can’t wait to share them with you! Grab some coffee and take a minute to get to know Jess and what she’s all about.
Tell us about yourself and your family:
My name is Jessica Martin, wife to one lucky dude and doing the best I can with my kiddos, Dexi- 8, and Atticus- 3 (pictured right). I moved to Austin after being accepted to UT in 2016. I set out to get my degree after my daughter was born and it brought us here. I wanted to not only set an example for her, but to provide her with more opportunities and attempt to be the best parent I could. If I’m being completely honest though, I’m a lifelong student that geeks out on exploring curiosity. This was also the first time I ever left my hometown, Cisco, Texas. It’s a once-was oil town known for its interesting history being the home to the first Hilton Hotel and the world’s largest man-made swimming pool, although, I knew it better as a town with more churches than the population could ever support. Moving by myself with my 2.5 yo daughter was one of the most isolating transitions I ever set out on. My husband stayed behind for work and we did long distance and weekends for four more years until he joined us at the beginning of 2020.
I graduated in 2019 with a BA in English. Probably the worst degree to get a good paying job straight out of college, so I worked at a preschool until the pandemic turned life upside down.
Give us all the deets on The Jessica Martin Photography & Films:
I am a full-time photographer and cinematographer. I had a photography business before I moved to Austin, but between school and all the changes that come from moving to a new place and gaining more knowledge at school provides, I outgrew it. Things changed…I changed. Like many have experienced during the pandemic, I started to reconsider my life. What brought me joy and where my skills were strongest. Many days were spent deciding what happiness and success looked like for my own internal meter. In 2020 I began building a new vision for my life. One which includes finding joy and fulfillment from what I can give to others, memories. My father died of testicular cancer when I was 6 and my mother died of a sudden heart attack when I was 26. Both of their deaths have shaped my point of view drastically when it comes to documenting families and recording memories. The fragility of life floats to the top of my mind pretty frequently, but it’s not out of sadness that I enjoy photographing families. In fact, it’s quite the opposite. It’s the joy of what family stands for.
Choosing to be with people we love and support and recording personalities and life. None of us know how long we have and although the big moments should be celebrated and recorded it’s the moments in the shadows between those big milestones where happiness and joy grow. It’s in the conversations we have with our kids when we pick them up from school or the laughs shared after dinner while they play at the park. It’s even found in the toughest of moments when your youngest falls and scraps his knee and you bandage it up and kiss his tears away. Finding those pockets of gratitude for life and celebrating every day moments are worth remembering.
Our mission is to Give Moms the Gift of Time…any tips?
I don’t think I have any magic tricks that will help you keep your house clean or get to sleep in an extra 30 minutes a day, but what I can tell you is that you don’t get time back.
If you’re struggling with time management it might be more important to reevaluate and log where your time goes and what you’re willing to cross off to more fully enjoy your life. What can you let go?
If you are a homeschool mom like me, I’m always looking for activities that keep my kids busy, and I have to say it’s always the simple things. Hammering ice is a favorite around here or using a spray bottle full of water on anything and everything outside can keep my kids busy for a good chunk of time. Not to mention, the hand eye coordination and fine/large motor skills.
What are some of your biggest challenges you are currently facing with your business?
Respecting my limitations. I can only stretch myself so far AND give everyone a similarly great experience. I am a perfectionist and I want everyone that hires me to have the best images and films. This takes extra time but I don’t want to sacrifice quality for quantity. I have been experiencing growing pains and just trying to ask the right questions of myself and the hurdles I am experiencing.
Anything new or exciting to share about The Jessica Martin Photography & Film?
All of my photography sessions come with a film. Something your kids and family will cherish forever. Do you have old home movies from your youth? Or maybe you fall down a black hole the night before your oldest turns 5 watching all the old videos from when they were a baby crying your eyes out. Sound familiar? Let me help, not only create better videos you can actually be in with your kids, but turn that old footage into longer films you and your family can watch on a whim without digging through years of backed up data piled in the digital dusty corner of your cloud storage.
Where do you see your business in the next five years?
Oh gosh, this is always a tough question. Life is always changing! The simple answer is creating a well-oiled machine that generates only the best results that adds value to all of our lives. I daydream about more travel opportunities and using my skills to explore this planet a bit more.
And we have to ask…favorite place to eat in Austin?
Without a doubt, Verde’s. It’s on the edge towards BeeCave, but it’s so worth the drive. Otherwise, you will probably spot me on the patio at La Mancha off of Burnet on a lazy Sunday afternoon.
Anything else you want to share with South Austin Moms?
Don’t let fear keep you from being in the picture. Kids aren’t going to remember how you look, they are going to remember how they felt when they were wrapped up in a bear hug.
Thanks so much to Jessica for sharing more about her business and life with us. If you are interested in working with Jessica to create everlasting memories for your family, be sure to get in touch!