Most husbands would do anything to support their wife throughout her pregnancy, but what about when a husband’s job has him stationed thousands of miles away?
That was the case for Veronica and Brandon Phillips when Phillip found himself deployed overseas in the Air Force while Veronica was pregnant with the couple’s first child back home in Miami. When Veronica decided to do a maternity shoot, she wanted to include Brandon in the experience and shine a light on the reality of pregnancy for so many military families. With the help of photographer Jennifer McMahon, she was able to find a creative way to make Brandon a part of the shoot even while he was overseas.
McMahon employed photoshop to combine two photos, one from Veronica’s maternity shoot and one of Brandon posing in his Air Force uniform with a desert landscape in the background. In the emotional collage, he seems to be reaching across into her side of the photo to put his hand on her belly.
“I had seen many photos where people were Photoshopped in, and I have Photoshopped siblings together before to look like one seamless photo,” McMahon told The Huffington Post. “After playing around with several edits for a few days and many hours of editing, I posted the one I thought told the best story and would evoke emotion in all who saw it.”
She ended up picking the right one. After she shared the photo on Facebook and Instagram, it touched the hearts of thousands on social media. “I am so honored that my photo could do that,” she said. “I know it’s not even the best photo, but it’s the story that it tells that means so much to people.”
The Phillips’ really touched McMahon. “It broke my heart when Veronica told me her story. I couldn’t imagine. And to think it’s a regular occurrence. This is what it means to serve our country,” she said. And according to McMahon, Brandon was happy to have this common experience shared so beautifully. “Brandon said he was ‘happy my wife gives military women a voice through pictures,'” she said. Even if he wasn’t physically there for the process, the picture shows both of their commitment to their unique family unit.