We had the good fortune of connecting with Brenna Hodge and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Brenna, have there been any changes in how you think about work-life balance?
The ebb and flow of a work life balance was completely disrupted by Covid. Prior to March 2020, my business had been picking up speed. I had chosen to lean into the artistic world, and find myself outside of being Mom after 11 years of full time hanging with my 3 kids. They were all finally in school, and husband was home on the weekends, so the daytime and weekend shoots were completely feasible. Post Covid, I, like so many others, became a full time homeschool teacher. We had to reconfigure our schedules so that the little work I had during 2020 was met with the energy and excitement required of me. It was hard. It was draining. It was also some of the most intimate and intentional weddings I’ve experienced. In all things there are decisions to be made and priorities to be considered. I am blessed with a job that allows me to adjust and pivot as needed to be present for the moments and memories I am hired to capture. Sometimes that means allowing the kids those extra hours of video games and throwing on headphones to edit in peace. As the world continues to open back up, I have my designated times in our shared calendar to duck out to my fave local coffee shop and be alone with my gal, Lightroom. I bring my laptop to sports practices, and edit in the car during pickup. I write a list and check things off as I go. I’ve learned to delegate and lighten my load in practical ways like ordering takeout or having someone clean our house. I’ve learned the limits of my bandwidth and have experienced the freedom to enjoy what I excel at by admitting what I don’t.

Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
My photography style is enhanced and bold, real life moments. The in-betweenness of poses and perfection. The sly side eyes, the belly laughs, the delicate details, I want to capture love and joy. I want people to look back at their photos and feel nostalgia. I’ve learned the value of having an open and sometimes goofy personality. I’ve learned that I make people feel comfortable because I genuinely am interested in who they are and how they got there. I believe this is perhaps 50% of the battle as a photographer. You can learn the foundations of working a camera and taking photos, but if you cannot connect with people, you’re not going to get any shots containing real human emotion.

Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
Oh I love this question! Well, living in Austin, the opportunities are endless. We would have to grab coffee and walk along Lady Bird. Perhaps, pop into our beautiful Central Library in downtown. Brunch is always a given when friends are in town. The rooftop at Paper Boy is a favorite. Paddle boarding or kayaking if the weather is nice. Depending on the day we could hit the farmers market and prep for a meal together and invite friends over for dinner and games. French press coffee with local Merit or Summer Moon beans. Check the calendar and see who is coming through for a stand up show at our cool and intimate Cap City Comedy club. We have to give our friends the touristy taste of South Congress, and we’d brag about all of our amazing ethical and sustainable shops along the way. Cramming all of the best food into one week would be hard, but we would for sure go to The Peacock at The Austin Proper hotel. We’d have food truck lunches, and show them the Blanton Museum of Art. We may even pop up to Georgetown for cocktails at Golden Rule and walk the town square for the small town charm. And of course Lick or Sweet Ritual for our favorite vegan ice creams.

Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
To all my photographer sisters who encouraged and guided me those many phone conversations before taking the plunge to start my own gig. To Whitney Darling for allowing me to travel the country with her and for the joy and creative energy she brings to every single project. And to my husband for being my #1 cheerleader, site designer, childcare worker, and soundboard through my constant flow of artist insecurities.

Website: www.brennajoy.com

Instagram: Brennajoyphotography

Facebook: Brenna Joy Photography

Image Credits
Brenna Joy Photography

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