Annapurna Mellor sees the world with the keen eyes of a photographer, honed by years of practice. An international wanderer at heart, Mellor is a successful photographer, having worked with the likes of Lonely Planet and National Geographic Traveller Magazine. She is also the Co-founder of ROAM Magazine — a creative and cultural digital travel magazine that showcases the real beauty of travel through expressive photo essays and insightful city guides.
Hailing from Yorkshire, England, Mellor spent much of her childhood abroad in the United Arab Emirates and Australia, eventually falling in love with Asia after graduating. Her work has taken her around the world, from the Himalayas to Bangkok and even back to her native UK.
Mellor shows heart in her sophisticated, wanderlust-inspiring images. A scroll through her Instagram reveals portraits, landscapes, and angles of colorful creation she has captured through her lens. Through her work with ROAM Magazine, Mellor further reveals an ambition to share the cultures of the world’s continents, helping her experiences come to life through a series of images that stir a cultural wonder in her followers.
When did you first realize your path as a photographer?
I never studied photography and never really expected to become a photographer. At the beginning it was very organic, I went traveling for a year after university and quickly realized that taking photos and storytelling was something I loved doing and something I had a natural eye for. The first place I got photographs I was really proud of was when I traveled for a month in Myanmar a few years ago, as part of that year of travel. I fell in love with the country and left with a set of images I am still proud of today. I think traveling in the country was the first time I really saw the kind of photographs I wanted to take, and the stories of people I wanted to tell. Getting a contract with Getty Images and having my first photographs in Lonely Planet guide books was also a big moment for me, and the first time I realized I could turn my passion into a career. I’ve been growing and developing as a photographer ever since.
How have you used social media to brand your work?
Instagram has been an incredibly useful way of sharing my work with a wider audience and getting brands and publications to be aware of my work. I was quite late to Instagram and it’s only really in the last year that I have been paying much more attention to how, when and what I post. It is also a wonderful community and has allowed me to connect with other creatives, photographers and bloggers from around the world. Although I sometimes have a love/hate relationship with the platform, overall, it’s been a huge part of my career development and I’m excited to see where it can take me in the future.
What is your editing process like?
I edit everything on Lightroom using my own presets I have made. When I transfer them to my phone, I sometimes add a light VSCO filter. I like my work to look classic and timeless, so I’m not into heavy or ‘trendy’ editing. But I do really like the look and depth of film, so although I shoot primarily on digital, it’s good to know you can add a bit of film effect to the image afterwards.
Do you have a favorite place to photograph?
My favorite place to photograph is India. It’s so vibrant and colourful, with wonderful people and cultures and festivals. It’s a constant kaleidoscope of wonderful photographic opportunities and every time I go back, whether on assignment or to work on personal projects I fall in love with new places. I’d love to spend more time there in the future, and aim to travel to India at least once a year to work on new images and also just engage more with the culture which is very close to my heart.
What is your latest project?
I’m just back from two wonderful and very rewarding shoots in Morocco and Rome, both working with great brands I love. I don’t have any travel assignments coming up but I’m planning on spending a month in Berlin this summer, hopefully connecting with photographers and brands over there and perhaps taking some short trips around Europe. The nature of the job is very spontaneous though, I never know when exciting projects will come up at the last minute–so I really could be anywhere in the next few months!
To see more of Mellor’s work, be sure to visit her website.