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Photographer Joey Brent Captures Life in Lafayette County, Oxford and Ole Miss

Oxford photographer Joey Brent wears many hats, but none more important than the one with the newly stitched “grandfather” moniker.

Joey and Beverly Brent
Joey and Beverly Brent

Re-introduce yourself to Oxonian Joey Brent and his wife of 32 years, Beverly – the “love of his life” according to a recent note he sent HottyToddy.com. The popular and vibrant couple have lived and worked in Oxford since 1989 when they relocated from Memphis.

Brent recently retired from Ole Miss where he served as Assistant Athletics Director for Information Technology for 27 years.

Joey Brent Photo by Thomas Graning
Joey Brent
Photo by Thomas Graning
“I officially retired in September of 2015,” Brent said. “I was going for 30 years but that just didn’t seem to be in the cards.”

After his retirement from Ole Miss, Brent seamlessly moved into a vocation that has held his captivation since he was in high school: professional photography.

“I have been a photographer since high school,” Brent recalled. “I was on the annual staff and that is really when I got into it with my first Nikon. And, I’m still a Nikon shooter,” he added.

Ironically, Brent’s workload has increased since his UM retirement as he can be seen working tirelessly all over Oxford these days. In a particularly busy two week stretch, I shared photography space with the man at several events: local author Julie Cantrell’s book signing of her latest novel The Feathered Bone at Off Square books, the Oxford Fiber1 Fiber Arts Festival at the Powerhouse, the Thacker Mountain Radio Hour at the Lyric Oxford and Off Square Books and more than once at the 2016 Oxford Film Festival where I coerced him into posing on the red carpet for me (below).

Oxford photographer Joey Brent Photo by Jeff McVay
Oxford photographer Joey Brent
Photo by Jeff McVay

“All I can say is that my family is behind me 100 percent in this endeavor and that my ‘retirement’ is keeping me very busy,” Brent explained. “I left Ole Miss after 27 years and have a lot of great memories from that time.”

Along with his new role as an independent professional photographer, Brent has had to adapt to his brand new role as grandfather to 5-month-old Nolan Eubanks, which comes naturally and with beaming pride.

Joey Brent's grandson, 5-month-old Nolan Eubanks. Photo by Joey Brent
Joey Brent’s grandson, 5-month-old Nolan Eubanks.
Photo by Joey Brent

“Oh my gosh – being a grandfather is just a wonderful feeling,” Brent said. “You walk in and his little face just brightens up the room… makes you not have a care in the world.”

Nolan’s parents are Brent’s daughter, Holly Eubanks, wife of South Panola School District Public Information Director Jeff Eubanks (who drives a nitro-burning Volkswagon Golf named JoJo). Holly will be working and commuting along with her husband, Jeff, to the Panola County School District beginning in August of this year where she will serve as speech therapist.

(From left) Jeff Eubanks and Holly Eubanks holding son, Nolan. Photo by Joey Brent
(From left) Jeff Eubanks and Holly Eubanks holding son, Nolan.
Photo by Joey Brent

Joey also has a son – a 2007-2010 Ole Miss Rebel offensive lineman – Zack Brent. Zack is married to the former Kate Simpson – also a photographer – and they reside in Southaven. According to Joey, “Zack is the lead pharmacist in the Emergency Department at Baptist Hospital in Memphis.”

(From left) Zack, (dog) Paisley and Kate Brent Photo by Joey Brent
(From left) Zack, (dog) Paisley and Kate Brent
Photo by Joey Brent

Although Brent owns his own business – Photos by Joey Brent – his loyalty and passion are all things family and Oxford. He does a majority of his professional “shooting” for Invitation Oxford, who he’s collaborated with since the magazine’s inception. He has also completed projects for the Oxford Citizen, the Daily Journal and others.

When asked what his favorite “subject” is to photograph, Brent said, “If I had to pick a favorite, I would pick wedding photography and sports. I’m most happy when capturing memories for people that will last a lifetime. To see the happy faces just makes me feel good.”

Photo by Joey Brent
Photo by Joey Brent

As a 56-year-old, a goal of “growing my photography business” seems profound and perhaps dated; but, with Brent, that’s not the case and that’s exactly what he lists as his ultimate goal in his professional life. A more objective and short-termed goal for the moment is that in the coming months, he’ll be busy covering the Ole Miss Rebel, Lafayette and Oxford High School baseball teams.

More than anything – although Brent’s photography is intriguing and a worthy topic of conversation – sitting down and truly understanding the man and what drives him: his values as a Christian member of North Oxford Baptist Church, dedicated husband, father and grandfather is a much better way of expending your energy while getting to know him.

I know, because I’ve been there.

Joey summed it up best by closing: “I am blessed to be able to do what I do.”

Check out the gallery below of some of Brent’s favorite shots around the L-O-U community (and other places) over the last few years.

Joey Brent can be reached by phone at 662-816-8155 or by email at joeybrent@gmail.com. Portions of his work in photography can be viewed at JoeyBrentSmugMug.com or on his Facebook page, www.facebook.com/PhotosbyJoeyBrent.

Photo by Joey Brent
Photo by Joey Brent
Vaught-Hemmingway Stadium Photo by Joey Brent
Vaught-Hemmingway Stadium
Photo by Joey Brent
Double Decker Arts Festival Photo by Joey Brent
Double Decker Arts Festival
Photo by Joey Brent
Photo by Joey Brent
Photo by Joey Brent
Photo by Joey Brent
Photo by Joey Brent
Photo by Joey Brent
Photo by Joey Brent
Downtown Dallas Texas Photo by Joey Brent
Downtown Dallas Texas
Photo by Joey Brent

Jeff McVay is a staff writer and graphic designer for Hottytoddy.com. He can be reached at jeff.mcvay@hottytoddy.com.

Follow HottyToddy.com on Instagram, Twitter and Snapchat @hottytoddynews. Like its Facebook page: If You Love Oxford and Ole Miss…

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