Melissa Farlow is known for her personal approach when photographing people. Over 20 National Geographic projects have taken her to diverse cultures and landscapes throughout Mexico and South America, six countries in the European Alps, Quebec, Alaska and in every part of the U.S. including the Okefenokee. She has traveled extensively in the American West for National Geographic magazine stories on public lands and wild horses. She is currently photographing “Chasing Freedom,” a book on mustangs that will be released in 2015.
As a teacher Farlow shows genuine concern helping photographers identify and expand personal strengths. She helps photographers build confidence to connect with their passion and find a personal style. She encourages clarity in photographic storytelling drawing from experience teaching photojournalism at the University of Missouri. Since that time she served for 20 years on the faculty of the annual Missouri Photo Workshop. Farlow frequently lectures in professional and educational venues recently presenting at Germany’s Lumix Festival, the Annenberg Space for Photography and National Geographic Storytelling Seminars. She taught photo classes in Italy, Dominican Republic and Cuba in addition to the Eddie Adams Workshop, Anderson Ranch and National Geographic photocamp in Olympic National Park.
Farlow’s National Geographic books include Wild Lands of the West and Long Road Southfeaturing the Pan American highway. She worked on Descubre Ecuador and several Day in the Life books. Her images appear in over 70 books including Geographic’s The Photographs, Best 100 Wildlife Photographs and Women Photographers at National Geographic.
Farlow’s pictures appear in Smithsonian, GEO, LIFE, National Geographic Traveler and Sierramagazines as well as the 2014 Shriver Report. Her photographs have been exhibited at The Green Building Gallery, IWitness Gallery, Silver Eye Center for Photography and Pittsburgh’s Carnegie Museum of Art.
Some of Melissa’s students weigh in:
“Melissa has been so informative to work with on my photo story. She helped me look at the story in broader, deeper, more intimate ways, as well as making the story more cohesive as a whole. Specifically, Melissa was very adept in helping me prepare to photographically see the concepts I was shooting and the mind-sets of my subject and pushing me to get in closer where I had been tentative; really show WHO my subject is. In addition, I found the way that Melissa gave input and feedback to be quite constructive and really built me up as a photographer.”
“I really appreciated that Melissa took the time to sit down and look at my work. It has really made an impact on me. I found her advice helpful and inspiring. Words cannot express how grateful I am that Melissa went through my photos and honestly told me her professional opinion. I have started using the techniques she suggested to make better pictures. I would have never had these ideas.”
“I took a class with Melissa who immediately put everyone at ease. She was very supportive and gave me the confidence to pursue working on a story that I believed in. I enrolled in more studies following that week and followed my passion. It changed my life. Thank you Melissa with all my heart.”
“I was delighted by an extremely honest and insightful Portfolio Review with Melissa. In a very caring way she helped me edit my body of work, put it into perspective and made me see the bigger picture. With her great intuition for how to hone one’s skills and challenging yet effective teaching methods, she taught me highly transferable knowledge and artistry that will be long lasting and crucial for all my future projects as a photographer.
Whatever advice, guidance or know-how you are looking for, the Image Review with Melissa will not disappoint you, especially as you can’t beat the profound expertise and experience of a NatGeo photographer.”
I was one of the people in the audience at the storytelling seminar by Nat Geo. I must say that this was the best seminar I’ve ever attended. I’m pretty much a hobbyist/amateur aiming to be a professional in the near future. Your experiences, wonderful presentation and words of wisdom have been eye opening and so helpful. I ended up with 30 pages of notes! I keep referring to them. Ami and you were extremely approachable and I was pleasantly surprised at how open you both were in discussing your work methods and approaches to stories. Thank you so much for an excellent seminar and I look forward to attending more.
– Sid Harth