Every once in a while, a gig comes along that qualifies as “the job of a lifetime”. Thankfully I’ve had a few of them in my 8 years of photography but the latest qualifies as extra special for a few reasons, which I’ll explain.
I got an email recently from a guy named Jeff who works at a local ad agency called Bohan. I was very familiar with Bohan but had never worked with them. He asked me if I wanted to shoot a new branding campaign for St. Thomas Hospital which had recently bought Baptist Hospital.
The reason he wanted me to shoot the campaign is that he had recently seen my blog post about John Schneider and could tell that I “had an ability to really connect with my subjects”.
Then he said the new theme is “Nothing Shall Be Impossible”, which is from Luke 1:37 that says “For nothing shall be impossible with God”. Whoah, I thought. That’s a very similar verse to Philippians 4:13 which says “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” My Dad taught me that verse over and over growing up cause I never really thought I was capable of anything. So this theme for the verse really hit home. I was already in.
In addition, I was born at this hospital. Yep, I’m actually FROM Nashville, TN. I know, weird. So the chance to shoot a campaign for the hospital I was born in was just too special.
Lastly, tragedy struck during the middle of our shoot. It was a 6 day shoot that spanned over a week or two. After the first two days of shooting, I tragically lost my brother to a sudden heart attack on March 3rd. That obviously turned my life upside down ever since. But I still had to keep shooting. My brother was a photographer too so I decided to shoot the rest of this campaign using his cameras and gear.
Oh yeah, one more thing. Work was slow early this year and this job came at a perfect time and is now helping my wife and I bring our two adopted children home soon. Nothing shall be impossible, indeed.
So needless to say, on multiple fronts, this is one of the most special and memorable opportunities I’ve ever had. I’m so grateful to Bohan and St. Thomas Health for letting me be a part of this campaign. Eternally grateful.
The official 90-second TV spot:
A Behind-the-Scenes look into the entire campaign:
Some of my favorite images from the campaign:
The billboards are already popping up all over Nashville. Be on the lookout for them!
Do you know who at St. Thomas kicked off the campaign? I have some questions for them, and I'd like to know who I need to contact there.
Hope you don't mind, I put one of your images on a blog post about you and these images that I published on my photography blog. The link is http://billhobbs.com/nothing-shall-impossible/
I commend St. Thomas on their new campaign! As a child growing up in a Southern Baptist household, I remember how special it felt to hear my mom tell the story of my delivery at the original St. Thomas Hospital. How a Daughters of Charity nun brought me in and blessed me–dressed in a grey habit and white cornette.
In this day and age it is difficult to differentiate one facility from the other – just as the article says. But one thing I know to be true (at least 99.9 percent of the time) is this: when we are in pain, or when a loved one is suffering, we turn to prayer. I have said more prayers in hospital chapels than I have in actual churches. There are journals in church chapels across the city, filled with prayers written by family members in search of miracles. There are promises made to God or Allah or some other higher power: “If you will answer my prayer and take the cancer away from little Susie, I promise to….”
Because we believe that miracles DO happen, because we have hope in even the most difficult times…this campaign will touch a lot of hearts. When someone we love is sick, we don’t care that an ER’s wait time is only 10 minutes, or that a cardiac center just acquired a new daVinci robot. We just want our loved one to heal…and to truly believe that “Nothing shall be impossible.”
@MarionDuTilly Wow! And YES!!!!
@jeremycowart: It looks like both an amazing place to work and to receive services.
Jeremy, Thanks for being a photographer living out your faith in the "pro" community. It is a real encouragement. May God richly bless you and your family.
@jeremycowart man that is awesome. i can really hate you sometimes, man. unreal pics.
@jeremycowart Touching story, beautiful work!
@jeremycowart totally made me cry!
@jeremycowart This was so beautiful to look at! What an honor to capture these stories.
Jeremy, you continue to inspire people with your faith and hard work! I do hope that we will one day meet. I share your heart to be a light where ever I am and we have both gone through great darkness.... I feel for you... I lost my sister 1 years ago to cancer. God used that experience to bring me back to Mexico as a missionary....I am now working as a photographer in the government here ( in a family wellness area ).... I wok with people that are hurting and try to bring a smile and hope to those that have lost both. Keep up the hard work!! I am praying for you!! And never forget WHAT GOD SAYS ABOUT YOU..... YOU CAN DO ALL THINGS THROUGH CHRIST WHE STRENGTHENS YOU!!!!
@jeremycowart this. Is. So. Good.
@jeremycowart brilliant shots friend. Just brilliant.
@jeremycowart this is perfection Jeremy. Got me teared up & pulled in immediately. Amazing organization.
@jeremycowart gorgeous images and message.
@jeremycowart so very sorry for your loss Jeremy! Prayers out to you and everyone affected! Keep the faith!!
@jeremycowart beautiful! Great job and so sorry about your loss.
@jeremycowart prayers for your family on the loss of your brother. The commercial made me tear up:-) beautiful work!
@jeremycowart congrats!! As always your work is spot on
@jeremycowart love this.
@jeremycowart Awesome Campaign.... Terrible Tragedy... God doesn't give us anything we can't handle :)
@jeremycowart Jeremy, U R so beautiful. Keep the color flow shining through your heart. U have such a gift. So sorry about your brother, sad
@jeremycowart AMMMMAZINGGGG!! Sorry about the loss of your brother, May his soul RIP!
@jeremycowart you are a pillar and an example. Thanks for sharing this and being a leader (and vulnerable).
@jeremycowart how awesome! PTL for His grace, blessings, and perfect timing. Praying for y'all in your current life journey
As the wife of a trauma surgeon now chief of surgery at a veterans hospital, I LOVE this. Also having spent time in hospitals part of pastoral care, I GET this. This is a hard, painful, beautiful place that you captured so well. At a heartbreaking time in your life... Wow.
I saw the advertisement in town recently of the docs and nurses holding hands. Beautiful!
You have a wonderful, inspiring gift. Glad I found you here.
This is POWERFUL ~ on every level, for many reasons and this is more than just advertising, this is telling His story at it's finest through the power of media. Thank You for this! Inspires me to the point of bursting!
Jeremy- these images (and the story behind them) are beautiful. Such intimate moments. They were lucky to have you capturing these.
Absolutely breathtaking. I always love your work but this is so significant in many ways. Great job!