Jessica believes in the inherent beauty of every child. She prefers to be on location with natural light, indoors and outdoors. She works to bring out each child's personality, at play or at rest, then captures the essence in her photographs.
Jessica was born and raised in Kennesaw, Ga., a suburb of Atlanta (that's her in the top left picture). She fell in love with photography in high school art class. Her dad bought her first camera, a Pentax K1000, from a pawn shop in town. Her uncle Harold Alan Schroeder, a well-known portrait and event photographer, offered advice and encouragement (and photo equipment too). Jessica attended North Georgia Technical College, where she earned a perfect 4.0 GPA, and enrolled at the Art Institute of Atlanta, where she received a BFA in photography and graduated with the highest honors in her class. She won numerous awards including Best in Show for graduating portfolio.
After graduation, Jessica worked in Atlanta as a full-time assistant to Parish Kohanim, a fine art and commercial photographer whose images have appeared in Vogue, Time, Newsweek and Harper's Bazaar magazines, and in ad campaigns for Fortune 500 companies.
After two wonderful years with Parish, Jessica felt a bigger city calling her name. So she hugged all her friends and family goodbye, packed up and left for the Big Apple.
Jessica moved to New York City to learn from all kinds of photographers (fashion, portrait, still life, interiors) and launch her own photography career. She assisted and digital-teched on photo shoots, retouched images for magazines, test-photographed with modeling agencies and built her fashion portfolio. She also photographed castings for production companies. These can involve as many as 400 children in a day! She loved making the kids feel comfortable and getting natural expressions -- even on the 400th child.
As Jessica's friends and relatives started to have children, she began photographing them for fun. They begged her for more pictures and then their friends begged her for pictures. She began changing her focus from fashion to children. Today she still enjoys the excitement of fashion photography, but loves photographing and documenting the genuine spontaneity of children.
Jessica lives in Brooklyn, and photographs children and families around the New York and Atlanta areas.