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MEET US

I am a wedding photographer, turned author, turned entrepreneur, turned pj-wearing-talk-to-my-dogs-more-than-people type of business owner. 

I've got a lot of raw, honest crap to say. Start here:

hey I'm Mel!

author, podcaster, photographer, pro-puppy cuddler

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wearing ugg boots all year long. my fluffy red hair. my ultra dance move "washing the windows." my epic ability to eat all the chips.

what I'm known for:

My pride & joy are my two rescue pups, Charlie-Pup & Esmay. Pretty damn sure I speak to them more on a daily basis than I do people, but I'm cool with it. I'd rather read a book than watch a movie. And I vote for cleaning the toilets over cooking in your kitchen, which is why I married a country-born chef! Writing is my joy, and for the rest of my years, I will practice and cultivate this creative expression to the best of my ability. 

I'm a city-gal-turned-hillbilly after i married my better half & bestie, cory. I moved to a small town in michigan to start our life together and since then, i've traded in malls for flea marts and heels for bare feet in sand.

Meet Melissa

Meet Cory & the pups >

Dive deeper into my story>

jokes that he thinks is funny (but no one else does). the mullet he grew for halloween. always cooking the best meals out of the craziest ingredients

what I love him for:

Cory - let me start off by saying, is my better half by far! He has never been afraid to be himself, and is goofy, silly, and loooooves the dance parties I make him do in our kitchen (just kidding!) When I first met him, he had a scary hillbilly mustache that I still make fun of him for, and exactly 4 pairs of camo pants that he wears on rotation. Fun fact, he still did his laundry by hand and hung it out on a clothes line to dry!

Cory is a small town, country guy at heart. he can most often be found working our vegetable gardens, hunting our property, and fishing on the hidden streams in our small corner of michigan

Meet Cory

Meet Our Rescue Pups >

rescue dogs are some of the most loving friends you'll ever meet. they often require extra time & love and are 100% worth the effort

what I love about rescuing dos:

Charlie-Pup has always been our "chunky monkey!" Her fav pastimes are eating as many treats as she can find, and snuggling with me while I work. Esmay is small & dainty. She loves to run & run, and will swim in Lake Michigan for hours on end. 

Both our fur babies are coincidently, our Employees Of The Month, every month!

Charlie-pup & esmay are our best friends & precious fur babies. we adopted both from sad circumstances, but have loved them with all our hearts!

MEET charlie-pup & esmay

Meet Me >

I started off as a wedding photographer and before I knew it, I was hustling 24/7, burning the candle at both ends, all in search of this one goal: to achieve success.
SOUND FAMILIAR?

i'm a perfectionist, an achiever & a dreamer

but like you, i have a story

Lorem ipsum dolor amet tacos butcher 8-bit, small batch kogi XOXO yr enamel pin 90's tilde pop-up. Hell of ramps irony ennui hoodie succulents, put a bird on it banh mi ugh jianbing adaptogen portland readymade 

We believe in heirlooms.

what makes us different

Oh hey girl hey!
Think of us right now as if we are chilling in our leggings, wrapped up in my fav Pottery Barn fur blanket, Charlie Pup on our lap, and sipping on our one billion espressos. Cuz that's what it's like when you have a raw, honest chat with your best girlfriend. And dude, let's be real, we all need to know that someone is batting in our corner for us at all times. Well that's me, over here, caramel macchiato in hand, ready to lend a hug or a reality slap any time you need.  

"the raw truth about how i transformed my life after hitting rock bottom, to helping creative business owners find their own joy & fulfillment in their life"

Want to dive deeper >

My story

As my business grew, so did my hunger for success. But in my chase, I began to forget about being happy & satisfied with where I was, and started feeling empty as I chased after my achievements. I was too busy hustling, try to be more & do more, to realize that I was grinding myself and my life into the dirt.

the perfectionist

2014-2015

After two years of late nights, no sleep, and working every single day of the week, I was finally able to quit my job and go full time with Lux Light Photography. I thought in those years, that I had it made. Cory supported my dreams and in my thrill, I began reaching for more and more.

the workaholic

2013

I started my wedding photography business in 2011 with barely any money to my name, but with more goals & dreams than I knew what to do with. Having just moved from the city to small town Michigan, starting a biz from scratch was tough. But being the workaholic that I was, I started hustling, working a corporate job full time and building the photography business on the side. 

the dreamer

2011

Hitting my rock bottom came hard and swift for me. And like most creative women, we don't see it coming. We are so passionate about achieving and being all the things, that we forget what is truly important in our lives. But by then, it's too late. I have been on a journey to rediscover practical strategies to ditch the chase of perfectionism, to face fear, and to be filled once again with the fire to be my joyful, creative self that God created me to be.

the journey

2018

I began to work harder and more than ever before, chasing that idea of being perfect. Of being more. Of being successful. My hair started to fall out. I developed anxiety. My marriage started to fall apart. My business became under attack by clients who felt wronged by me, and I was forced to take legal action. Then 24 hours later, the first breakdown came.

the crash

2017

Cory and I got married. It should have been a celebration. But it wasn't. Sure, it was happy, no doubt about that. But in my chase for perfection, I couldn't rest. I couldn't relax. I couldn't see how I could take any time off fro my business to enjoy my own wedding. The morning that I was due to be married, I was on my laptop answering emails, terrified that if I took even one day off, the world as I knew it would explode.

the control freak

2016

more info>

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Say adios to the feeling that life is out of control,
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College taught me that free shit is reeeeally awesome.
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I choose every day, to live up to the best version of myself

I'll be honest, I experience fear every day. Fear of not being enough, fear of failure, fear of being unloved and judged as not worthy by the other gals in my industry.

But despite my tendency to want to be a perfectionist at every turn, I choose to live in abundance. I choose to live in the slow moments. I choose to find genuine fulfillment in even the small things. 

If this resonates with you, then you're my kind of people

the troubles of yesterday don't have to define my today

Need help? Get my fav freebies >

must-have tools for my creative life

My 2019 reading list

After I hit my business burnout - and almost wrecked my marriage in the process - I spent over 12 months healing and learning surefire strategies that I still use to better my life today. I know what it feels like to feel your life and your business spinning out of control. These sage words of wisdom from my fav authors, offer the best advice and life principles to turn your life around!

learn more

Tool No. 2

must-have tools for my creative life

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Hi, my name is Melissa and I am a recovering workaholic. After spinning my wheels for YEARS, trying to build a brand that my clients would love, I felt exhausted, depleted, and looking for any way to save me time on all of the work that I had piled on my shoulders. I needed a simple, beautiful way to showcase my business, without the burden of having to edit every damn pic!

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Tool No. 3

must-have tools for my creative life

contracts to keep me, my biz & my family safe

2017 was the hardest year in my business. I was met with client after client who challenged my business practices. I even had threats for a lawsuit. And as stressful as that was, I was able to rest assured that myself, Cory, and our lives were protected by the contract I had in place. I am forever grateful for my safety, thanks to the Contract Shop!

explore the contract shop

Tool No. 3

Get daily access to myself and the top tips, tools & strategies I use to grow my 2 businesses + keep my life in order!

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