Connecticut College Magazine · Summer 2005


Vanessa Stock Bristow ´81

Jessica Haynes McDaniel ´97

Of Mice and Man

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Jessica Haynes McDaniel ´97

Jessica Haynes McDaniel ´97
Jessica Haynes McDaniel ’97

Photographer captures the fleeting moments of childhood

by Mary Howard

Within minutes of walking into the Pawcatuck, Conn., home of Tim ’93 and Elizabeth Lynch Cheney ’92, photographer Jessica Haynes McDaniel ’97 is down on the floor, striking up a conversation with the Cheney’s three-year-old twins, Isabelle and Peter. She laughs with them. She whispers secrets. And she even teaches them how to make raspberries.

“Jess was excellent at gaining their trust but then letting them be themselves,” says Liz Cheney, associate director of alumni relations at CC. “Isabelle and Peter barely noticed the camera equipment that she was using.”

McDaniel owns Boston Baby Photos and spends her days photographing children, from newborns to school-aged, in homes in the Boston area. A philosophy major and photography minor, she worked in digital media, as a Web designer and manager, until friends convinced her to start photographing children professionally. “I would make albums of photographs for my friends who had children and give them as presents,” says McDaniel.

McDaniel has been in business for herself for two years. When she decided to hang out her shingle, she turned to her former photography teacher Ted Hendrickson, associate professor of art. “He was incredibly helpful,” says McDaniel, who shoots with digital cameras and does all of her own printing.

But it is not just her skills in the creative and technical side of the business that make McDaniel so successful. The former ConnChord has a natural ease with children. “Jess developed an immediate rapport with my child and didn’t even flinch during the inevitable melt down!” says one client.

“My goal,” says McDaniel, “is for the kids to not really notice me.” — MVH

For more information on Jessica McDaniel and business, visit

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