Women’s March on Washington DC -Jan 21, 2017

On assignment for Getty Images photographer Steve Exum documented crowds of American citizens demonstrating their concerns over President Trump’s ability to lead with homemade signs, speeches, and chants during the Women’s March on Washington, D.C. Crowd estimates for the march where over 500,000 just one day after Trump’s inauguration.

2016 Exum Christmas Card – Star of Wonder

We all loved this year’s Christmas card idea – partially because each of us contributed something to the overall design but mostly because we were all super excited to feature our newest family member, Suheila Peña, our exchange student from Mexico!

Going into the shoot, we were pretty sure of ourselves. Shooting each person individually and then Photoshopping us onto the tree sounded like a breeze. We could work around everyone’s schedules and it wouldn’t take up an entire Saturday. Perfect! But the thing is, we are not perfect, we can’t pose like action figures.

You see, Steve shot the tree with little G.I. Joe action figures positioned exactly where he wanted them. They were our body doubles. All we had to do was get into our action figure pose from head to toe to finger alignment, smile, look natural, pretend we were climbing and then hold that pose…indefinitely.

Well, we are a loud and fidgety bunch with lots of ideas and very strong opinions and egos. And apparently, we’re just not good at listening or taking direction. I’m working on it. I’m sure it’ll be a new year’s resolution again. So, instead of the easy peasy shoot I had envisioned, it went something like this …

Exasperated photographer: “None of my clients behave this way!” Photographer’s children and wife: “Well, surely you don’t treat  your clients this way?!”  Oh, and believe you me, there were moments when we said things like, “maybe we should just cancel the card this year?!” Gasp! “Maybe we should just take a picture in front of the Christmas tree?!” Gasp! “Maybe we should just take a picture of Murphy – he will cooperate!” Not the worst idea.

We knew we had to remain civil and positive though. You see, we wanted to convince Suheila that being in an Exum family Christmas card is lots of fun and super cool. We weren’t fooling anyone. Just ask Kelsey or Alex. On second thought, don’t.

We got through it though because the bigger picture (the one we had all agreed on!) was more important. I mean, we all wanted the same darn thing! Also, we didn’t want to let anyone down or abandon tradition, and we absolutely had to pull it together and make good on our promise to Suheila – this is her first Christmas in the states!

So we dropped our egos and our individual ideas of “perfection.” We remembered our guiding light and we agreed to proceed and work together to hoist our star.

May we all find common ground and work together to see the Light in the new year.

Merry Christmas – Molly, Steve, Bella, Sawyer, Suheila and Murphy 


Steve Exum – Photographer & Heavy Lifter | Molly Exum – Storyteller & Star Support

Bella Exum – Tree-hugger | Sawyer Exum – Peak Climber | Suheila Peña – Guest of Honor

Murphy Exum – Furry Ladder | Kelsey Morgan – Graphic Designer, Creative Director & Film Editor  

Alex Tricoli – Behind the Scenes Photographer 



UNC Arts & Science Human Heart Issue

UNC Assistant Professor of music and filmmaker Cherie Rivers Nadalko worked with photographer Steve Exum to create the cover of the UNC Arts and Science Carolina’s Human Heart issue. Spoken word poet Will McInerney was the subject of our inside spread for this issue. The fall issue of the magazine kicked off an initiative celebrating “living the arts and humanities” throughout the 2016-2017 year featuring events, lectures, speaker series, academic courses, new initiatives, performances, exhibitions and more. This initiative will highlight and augment the great work being done on UNC’s Chapel Hill campus and beyond, and the synergies that are already happening among faculty, staff, students and alumni. For more information please check out a digitral copy of hte magazine at this link … http://magazine.college.unc.edu/2016/09/heart-photo-shoot/



Bliss Hair Salon



Hair stylist from “Bliss” salon will be styling breast cancer survivor, Gayle Gunn’s hair for a competition among Alamance county hair salons to create the best hairdo for a cancer survivor. The competition is associated with the 2016 Alamance County Pink Ribbon Luncheon. The Pink Ribbon Fund helps women get diagnostic tests, cancer therapy essentials and basic needs during treatment and is sponsored by the Alamance Regional Charitable Foundation. Photography by Seth Combs & Steve Exum of Exumphoto.com

WANTED! Repeat Offender Steve Exum

Steve Exum was placed behind bars for the crime of Having a Big Heart in March of 2014. Thanks to friends like you, he managed to make bail and was released.

It appears Steve is suspected of Having A Big Heart again and if he does not turn himself in by March 3rd, law enforcement will be forced to lock him up until he can post bail. Currently, Steve is on the lamb avoiding detainment. The Exum Photography team is trying to help. We are calling on all our friends to help post his bail. No donation is too small. PLEASE help!
Kidding aside… Steve Exum is proud to tell you that he is going “behind bars” on March 3rd during the MDA-Lock-Up event in Burlington, North Carolina to help in the fight against muscle disease. Steve is joining other business leaders in Alamance County to help raise critical funds for the Muscular Dystrophy Association.

Here are a couple ways you can help Steve:

  • Click here to make a secure, online donation today!
  • Download MDA Lock-Up Mobile app to donate now and keep track of the event.
  • Forward this email to friends and family.


The Exum Christmas Font – 2015 Exum Family Christmas Card

I have to admit, I was not on board with this year’s Christmas card idea when Steve introduced it during what has become our annual Christmas card meeting of the minds at the kitchen island. We came to the island with some pretty good ideas, but wearing tight-fitting clothing and getting in awkward and sometimes impossible positions to spell out Merry Christmas with our bodies just wasn’t at the top of my list. That didn’t discourage Steve. He would tell you that no matter the card idea, there’s always some “resistance” from me, so he was prepared. I will tell you that I like to weigh my options and question every detail. I mean, how many folks do you know who would say, “yes, let’s decorate a tree underwater for this year’s family card!” (like we did in 2009) without asking a few questions first? Besides, the most important part of the whole Christmas card production, like life and being a part of something bigger than yourself, is about working together and listening to one another’s thoughts and ideas even if they’re wildly different from your own. Everyone matters. So, with that said, I was sure I was going to get my way;-) However, I underestimated the power of Steve’s heartfelt enthusiasm. You know exactly what I’m talking about. He’s a force. I mentioned he came to the island prepared. He appealed to my Christmas sentimentalism. “Molly, we’ll wear Christmas pajamas. You know how much you love Christmas pajamas!” It’s true. It’s a tradition in my family to receive Christmas pajamas on Christmas Eve that began with mom’s 6 sisters and 3 brothers. They didn’t have much growing up, so new PJs were very special. The tradition continues with their children and grandchildren. So Steve had his hook in me, which just left Bella and Sawyer. I was shocked—it was their 1st choice! After assuring Murphy would be included, they said in unison, “cool.” That was it. And here’s the thing, this idea was meant to be. It’s a departure from what we’ve done in the past. It’s adorable. And now, thanks to the team at Exum Photo, we have our very own Exum Family Christmas font with serifs to boot! Here’s to listening and being open to new ideas in 2016!

Steve Exum – Dashing Dad | Molly Exum – Jolly Mom & Story Teller  | Bella Exum – Bendy Elf | Sawyer Exum – Wondrous Elf
Murphy Exum – The Wet Nosed Rein-Dog  | Kelsey Morgan – Graphic Designer & Creative Director | Seth Combs – Photographer

Beat Cancer

Happy Thanksgiving from the team at Exum Photography. We wanted to share a recent creative effort by one of our favorite clients in honor of giving back. Our friends at Fisher Wealth Management made their annual Thanksgiving donation in support of the fight against breast cancer. Their gesture was immortalized in their annual Thanksgiving card “Beat Cancer” shot by Steve Exum and designed by Kelsey Morgan.  Our hats off to this team for both expertly managing our savings and for their incredibly creative participation and enthusiam behind their own marketing efforts. We love the pink suit!

Behind-the-scenes: The food theme magazine cover shoot

A lot goes in to the making of our magazine covers, and this food photo shoot was no exception. The creative concept and photography were the brainchild of Steve Exum ’92 and his team, with the day-long shoot taking place at his studio in Elon, N.C. Food stylist Elizabeth Hensley was in charge of creating the look for each plate, which represents an individual story in the magazine. Caption by Kim Spurr.