ROCKY HILL, Conn. - After the birth of her first child, Jessica Mahoney endured six miscarriages — now, she's celebrating her 'rainbow baby' with an awe-inspiring photo-shoot.
A rainbow baby refers to a baby born following a miscarriage or still birth, representing the brightness and hope that follows a storm.
In August, Mahoney's husband, Kevin, reached out to Rocky Hill-based photographer JoAnn Marrero.
He wanted to do something special and rainbow-inspired to document their pregnancy.
Right away, Marrero knew she had to go above and beyond.
"As a birth and newborn photographer, I take the utmost care and pride in what I am capturing as there are no 'do overs' in my field of work, especially with births," Marrero said. "I know these captured moments are going to be passed down for generations to come."
In September, Marrero started collaborating with her mentor, photographer Mary Maloney.
"Having worked with her numerous times, I knew we would create magic," Marrero said. "I was definitely stressing about all these smoke bombs, but Mary was, as she always is, cool, calm, collected and ready for anything. I can't thank her enough as she was instrumental in this process."
So, the day came, and the colorful smoke bombs went off.
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"With each burst of color, we watched this portrait coming to life behind my lens," Marrero said. "It sounds beautiful, doesn't it? It was, but also picture lots of coughing, color-stained clothing and a rainbow wash in our hair."
Marrero said, through it all, Mahoney was stunning.
"Through our rainbow haze, Jess stood with composure, and her pregnancy glow came shining through like the sun," she said. "This was definitely her moment - a proud mother-to-be for the second time."
Marrero admits the final portrait was emotional for everyone involved.
"Certainly, it was an 'OMG, look what we've created' moment," she said. "Mary's final and meticulous refinement of this portrait was the final touch of perfection."
"Beautiful things happen when artists come together as a team to create something memorable, in this case for family who is so very deserving," Marrero said. "We are incredibly proud and honored to be a part of such special moments."