Hey there! I'm Melissa, AKA "MAO". I’m a portrait photographer, flower crown maker, and professional to-do list maker. I’m always ready for the next adventure but I'm also a homebody who loves yoga pants, HGTV, and home cooked meals. I’ve got an old soul, an obsession with floral print dresses, funny animal videos, big hats, cacti, and I haven't gone a day without bold lipstick since 2005!
MAO Photo was born almost three years ago out of my love for portraiture, nature, fairytales, and adventure! Shortly after graduating with my BFA in Photography from RISD, I decided that my mission in life would be to document everyday stories of love, beauty, and courage. To create and share real life fairytales. To me, everyone has a unique and captivating story to tell, whether it's their love story or their journey to High School graduation and beyond!
My own story ends and starts here with this guy. Oh, did I mention I'm a hopeless romantic? This fella and I met a year and a half ago and he's quickly become my best-friend and most ardent cheerleader. When I'm not photographing or editing your beautiful images, you can find me galavanting around Florida with him (camera in hand), decorating our new apartment, or planning our next overseas adventure!
This shouldn't surprise anyone but I love flowers. Real, fake, painted, on your head, on my head! Flowers all day everyday.
If we're on a shoot together I will scream, run, and possibly hide behind you if I see one. You have been warned.
My go-to camera, my Canon 5D Mark III. Paired with my 85mm and 50mm 1.2 and I'm happy as a clam.
I'm a natural light shooter, which means that I don't use any artificial lights. I prefer the beautiful FL sun!
This year I traveled to Spain, the Scottish Highlands, and England! Next year is Bulgaria, Greece, and Jamaica!
Don't get me wrong -- I love to travel, just don't put me in the window seat! And ladders? Forget it!
I haven't gone a day since I was 16 without lipstick on! Reds, pinks, burgundy, you name it. Any color lipstick is a friend of mine.
While I know how to contour, that crazy Youtube style face painting just isn't my jam. Though it is entertaining to watch.
Game of Thrones isn't just a show for me and my friends, it's a full Sunday night event filled with games, themed meals, and chocolate chip cookies!
I prefer sitcoms like Parks and Rec or The Office and fantasy shows like Outlander, Westworld, Game of Thrones, and The Walking Dead.
I love jazz and blues from the 20s, and the 70s and 80s are my jam. Fleetwood Mac is my favorite band.
I'm not kidding when I say I didn't know who Justin Bieber was until like two years ago. My pop culture knowledge is hilariously nonexistent.