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Meet Melissa Vossler

Today we’d like to introduce you to Melissa Vossler.

Hi Melissa, it’s an honor to have you on the platform. Thanks for taking the time to share your story with us – to start maybe you can share some of your backstory with our readers?
My photography journey didn’t start when I was 10 and given my first camera – nor was it started out of a passion ignited in college. It was early 2007, and our oldest child Lucas was 3 months old. My maternity leave was almost over and it was time for me to go back to my desk job. I really really didn’t want to leave our baby, but my husband Trei was wrapping up his last year of culinary school and we lived in one of the most expensive cities in the US, so living on one income would be almost impossible. One afternoon, Trei asked me what I would do instead and I casually responded “be a photographer.” A few days later I quit my job and we drained our savings account of every single penny, investing in a Canon DSLR and a nice lens. We were young, broke, and very free-spirited, what did we have to lose? I honestly thought the camera would do all the work. A few weeks into ownership, the harsh reality hit me, and I realized that if I wanted my photos to look anything like the phenomenal photographers I followed online – that I’d have to do way more than relying on my camera. After one year, a lot of books, a lot of googling, and A LOT of practicing – I took on my first paid client. By 2012, we had added three more kids to our family and I was making a six-figure income that allowed my husband to quit his job and stay home to work alongside me.

I never would have imagined that the tiny little dream I had as a brand new mom to help contribute in a small way financially would blow up into a business I absolutely loved, or that it would afford me the opportunity to stay home raising our kids. In fact, in 2015 my husband and I made the decision to move our family from Southern California to Raleigh, North Carolina, crossing our fingers that my business would still thrive, and here we are, almost 6 years later and nothing has changed! I’m able to travel back and forth a few times a year and serve all my incredible clients. Some of whom have been with me since the beginning. I mean, talk about an answer to our prayers!

We all face challenges, but looking back would you describe it as a relatively smooth road?

Oh man, that’s such a good question! I think the biggest struggle for me has been the blurred line between my personal and professional life. The whole reason I started my photography business was to allow me the opportunity to stay home with our kids. With that comes my responsibility to be present and available to my clients while also balancing pregnancies, school obligations, sickness, sports, sleep schedules, meal times, and bedtime routines. It’s easy to either be 1. an attentive business owner, or 2. an attentive mother. It’s a struggle to be both. Add in being solely responsible for your monthly paycheck, and not having things like health insurance or paid vacation. It’s definitely a balancing act. Thankfully thirteen years into my career, I’ve found a rhythm. I’ve also found more ease in saying no to the things that don’t bring me joy, and yes to the things that do. Having older more independent kids helps too.

Thanks – so what else should our readers know about your work and what you’re currently focused on?
I’m a natural light portrait and wedding photographer! Since 2009, I’ve shot over 250 weddings and really enjoyed that season of my life. The last few years, I decided to focus more on families, and have cut back tremendously on weddings. At this point, I’m booking mostly destination weddings (I like a good excuse to travel!) or very close family and friends. I’ve found that families bring me the most fulfillment, and I love the challenge of working with unpredictable kids. Capturing genuine smiles and family interaction, things I know are really important to moms and dads is something I feel really passionate about! I try and make the session as fun and carefree as possible. I don’t ever want it to feel like a burden. I often tell parents to sit back and relax and let me do the work. I’m good at garnering trust quickly and being someone that kids are willing to put their guard down for. I think it’s a big reason why I’m hired year after year. I would be lying if I said that there weren’t other photographers capable of shooting and editing like me. There are dozens out there with similar esthetics. But there is only one me, and I think that’s my big selling point.

I would say I’m most proud of the friendships I’ve made over the years. My circle of people to love has grown exponentially because of my job. I’ve had the great honor of not only watching people walk down an aisle and vow to love each other for the rest of their lives, but then I get to witness those vows in action. From weddings to newborn sessions to growing families and high-school senior sessions. Can you believe I’ve even gotten to the point of photographing weddings for adults that were once gap-toothed elementary-aged kids cheesing for my camera? It’s truly humbling!

Have you learned any interesting or important lessons due to the Covid-19 Crisis?
I actually learned something really surprising and beautiful. People care deeply about the importance of documenting their family – and nothing, not even a pandemic, can stand in the way of annual pictures. My calendar looked the same in 2020 as it did in all previous years!


  • Mini Sessions: $350
  • Full Sessions: $500
  • Newborn + In-Home Sessions: $650
  • Weddings: starting at $4000

Contact Info:

Image Credits
Courtney Aaron Photo

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