My Team is Growing. Let’s Meet Melissa!

My team at Janean Gray Photography is growing. I want to introduce you to Melissa Hough. She will joining my team as a wedding photographer! I am so excited to have her on my team! Let’s get to know Melissa!

“So what made you decide to become a photographer?” That’s probably the most commonly asked question I get when meeting new people. My answer to them is simply this….life.  As a mom of two, I’ve learned a lot about life through the eyes of a sweet little girl and softhearted little boy so I’ve gotten to see the best of both worlds. I originally wanted to go into the nursing field, but shortly after the birth of my daughter, I realized that it wasn’t for me.

I’ve always been the sentimental, creative, and artistic type. Painting, drawing, and writing were my ways of expressing my emotions and giving life to my thoughts and feelings so I tend to gravitate towards capturing those moments of emotions we most often overlook. Although I started my photography career mostly shooting children,  I specialize in shooting a variety of occasions from the first breaths of life at a birth to the moment a couple vow their lives to each other.   I absolutely fell in love with all things wedding after planning my own special day with the guy I fell in love with in high school.  Not knowing then what I do now, we decided to go the budget friendly route and skipped hiring a professional photographer.  Yes , I have images from that day of the things that transpired, but do they tell a story? It’s the story that makes the day what it is. The rings, the bouquet, the excitement on the bride’s face as her groom sees her for the first time in her flowing white gown….melts my heart every time!  Its all the little moments that make the day so special too. I love getting to know couples and telling their love story through the eye of my camera lens. To capture all those details they worked so hard to get perfect is something I work very hard to get perfect as well.

After years of shooting weddings of all kinds, I’ve met tons of amazing couples, as well as worked with many other talented photographers, forging friendships and bonds with others that I don’t think I would have had the chance to do otherwise.  Through time, I have developed a skill in seeing more than what meets the eye.  I’ve been able to put that creative side of me to use by artistically telling each unique story through photographs.  Photography isn’t just a career for me, its my passion.  My grandfather loved photography, as well as my mom, so I grew up posing in pretty dresses with dolls and siblings for family portraits and holiday photos.

Pictures have always been a very important thing in my family. So when I say its my passion, as cheesy as that sounds, I truly mean it.  I started pursuing a career in photography after being asked over and over again to photograph special events and milestones in the lives of friends and family and the more I did, the more I realized just how much I enjoyed doing so.  I’ve always had a thing for weddings though. There’s just something satisfying about capturing one of the most important days of a couple’s life one detail at a time. Although I didn’t set out to become one and I’m completely self taught, for the last 10 years I’ve been practicing, researching, and pushing myself to become a better photographer, because there’s always more to learn.

The first couple of years I had a hard time calling myself a professional, but in 2012 I was confident enough in my abilities that I decided to take the plunge and made it official.  I am excited to be moving forward and learning more, stretching my boundaries, and working with new people in and around the Gainesville community that I’ve called home for 34 years.   I’ve been blessed with this opportunity to make a dream become my reality and want to use every day God gives me to bless the lives of others by making moments into memories that will last for years to come.

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