There’s no denying the tension between pop stars like Justin Bieber and the camera-toting paparazzi who haunt their private lives.
But London photographer Joanna Domm was invited and the photos she’s taken of Bieber celebrating the third birthday of his half-sister, Bay, last Saturday have gone viral since the Biebs posted them.
The photos are the first to feature Bieber and his wife, American model Hailey Baldwin, his father Jeremy, his wife Chelsey, and all Bieber’s siblings: half-sister Jazmyn, 13, half-brother Jaxon, 11, stepsister Alli, 14, and Bay.
Bieber’s posts of the photos on his social media accounts have received millions of hits since the weekend.
“They’re a great family,” said Domm, 38, mother of two young boys.
“No one’s every captured a photo of the entire family before with Justin and all the kids. So, once he posted it, things started to get a little crazy. Fans started calling me at all hours and I had to take down my address and phone from my website.”
Domm has worked with Bieber’s stepmom, Chelsey, for a few years now, having taken photos of Bay’s first two birthdays, and was invited for this year’s party at Jeremy’s home in Stratford.
“We ended up with a really nice relationship and she called and told me Justin and Hailey would be coming,” said Domm. “They are both lovely people, super kind and you could see how much Justin loves those kids and how crazy he is about Hailey. They were super down to Earth.”
Of course, Domm also captured intimate moments, but not to share publicly.
Domm, a former early childhood educator, has worked as a professional photographer for about eight years, first in Hanover and then, after moving five years ago, in London – a tough market to crack given the city’s wealth of photographers. She specializes in newborns and family photos.
COVID added a new challenge and she worried she’d have to find new work if the economy and the pandemic didn’t improve.
“I’ve always had a camera in my hand,” said Domm. “After my first son was born, I became camera happy and I thought, ‘I can do this,’ so my passion became my career.
“The photography gives me a lot of flexibility to do all the things the boys need me for, things you might not be able to do with a nine-to-five job.”
Baldwin, daughter of actor Stephen Baldwin and niece of actor Alec Baldwin, married Bieber in 2018. Bieber, a Stratford native, is one of the world’s biggest pop stars, having sold more than 150 million albums with chart-topping hits including Baby, Sorry, Despacito, Holy and Stuck With U.
Domm doesn’t deny she’s hoping the experience gives her business (joannalynnphotography.com) a needed boost.
“That’s why I’m extremely grateful,” said Domm. “The experience I’ve got from doing that shoot is, by far, the highlight of my career and if I get extra business because of it, it’s just an added bonus.”
LONDON FREE PRESS