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Spotlight Photographer: Melissa J Photography



1. How did you get started in photography and when did you start your business?


A friend sold me a canon 10d camera and I was intrigued to figure out how to use it. It didn't come with a lens and I had no idea I needed to buy lenses to attach to it... I was *that* DSLR illiterate! The drive to take better pictures of my kids started my passion to learn everything about that camera and photography itself. I got to photograph a friend’s brand new niece at 7 days old and from that moment on, I knew newborn photography was the place for me. I opened my business August 2011!

2. Where are you located? Do you have a studio space or do you shoot on-location?


I’m in southern Colorado in the beautiful city of Colorado Springs. I have a studio located in Old Colorado City, which is in a historic area of town that I love.

3. What do you shoot with and what are your favorite lenses?


Canon 5d Mark II and my main workhorse is my 35mm 1.4 but my favorite lens is my macro 100mm 2.8.

4. What drew you to newborn photography? 


I love everything there is about babies. I also do maternity and birth photography and just love capturing the whole essence of bringing new life into this world. Babies are so pure, fresh, and fragile and makes my heart skip a beat nearly every session because I love it so much.

5. How would you describe your style & where do you find your inspiration?


Dreamy & pure. My tones are muted and natural and I like to give off an organic feel in the images. I find inspiration everywhere! Some of my favorite places include anywhere you can touch and feel fabrics and textures as well as small antique stores

6. Have you taken any photography workshops and/or training?


I’m self taught 100% but I would highly recommend a workshop to any newbie so that you can see how to safely pose these precious babies. I spent many hours Internet surfing, you-tube watching, and Google was my best friend. Looking back, I could've gained a lot of that knowledge at a reputable workshop and saved many computer hours away from my boys.

7. Where do you like to shop for your props? Do you have favorite vendors?


I’m known for my wood bowl type props and those I get around town at either antique shops or TJ Max Homegoods (I should buy stock in that store!). I have too many favorite vendors to list them all but a few to include would be Raspberry and Lime, Avonli Cottage, Goodnightmoon Props, Zoe and Oliver, Devoted Knits, Adorable Props, and JD Vintage Props. All those ladies put quality first, which is important to me.


8. Please share with us your top 5 favorite images!


It was so hard to choose 5 but I chose these 5 mainly for the tones of the images. I like the sweet softness that comes across when viewing them. I also love how comfortable the babies look. My goal is to always make baby look comfortable even if doing the difficult poses like froggy or hanging sling.







9. What are 3 you wish someone would have told you when you started?

1: Look to others for inspiration at the beginning but then step away and find your true self. Find out what style screams YOU and makes your hear flutter. The best thing I did for my business was hide all photographers FB feeds until I found my true style on my own.    

2:  Learn your camera FIRST and then learn the business  

3:  Know that the business side makes up a lot more than the artistic side. Know that in advance and plan for that. Take business classes. Visit your site and go to their meetings.



10. What  are your favorite things about


The close-knit community there is amazing. I’ve been a member since March 2013.

11. Lastly, tell us about YOU! Who are you, other than a photographer?


I’m a mom to 3 little monsters and they make me who I am today. I grew up in Oklahoma but also call Texas my home (southern gal, all the way!). I’ve been married to my hubs for 9 years and he's the best Mexican cook ever! I'm such a geek about family and just love spending as much quality time with them as I can. If I’m not with them or photographing babies, you can find me with a cold glass of Riesling and watching the sunset over the mountains.






Would you like to be our next Spotlight Photographer? E-mail us at with the subject “Spotlight Photographer.” We look forward to featuring you!