Serene, quietly beautiful, but still bursting with emotion…the work of Levana Melamed Photography is pure bliss. This Panamanian-turned-Pittsburgher is a firm believer in the power of photographs. In the words of Levana, they are “more than a piece of paper or a digital file…photography is really about transforming stories into images.” Her goal is to capture the joy, laughter, and uniqueness of your own special love story and turn it into memories that you can relive for years and years to come. Levana's photos are airy and oh-so-romantic. The only thing that glows brighter than the light Levana captures so beautiful is the inner beauty of each subject that her sweet personality and calming spirit manages to bring out. If you're still photographer-shopping for your special day, go say hi to her!
Tell me a little bit about your business!
I love everything about weddings and capturing all of the day's special moments so the couple can relive their story over and over again. I enjoy photographing all kinds of weddings. In fact, I'd call myself a “wedding nerd”. Seriously. I had so much fun planning my wedding and on my wedding day that I wish I could have another wedding (not sure if Chris, my husband, is so excited about it, though LOL). I have to say my absolute favorites are intimate weddings or elopements. Something about their secrecy makes my heart swoon (even more).
I've been in business (officially) since 2015 and it's been an amazing experience! Photography has been my passion for many, many years. But while working as an engineer in Panama (yes, I'm a Panamanian), photography stayed as the weekend's hobby until love brought me to Pittsburgh. After a lot of other jobs, I decided to take the chance as a full-time photographer, and couldn't be happier about it!
When not behind the camera, I teach yoga, which is a perfect complement to photography since it keeps me grounded and helps me focus on the things that matter the most – and that helps me serve my clients in a better way.
What makes your work unique? Why should brides and grooms hire you?
I think photography is more than a piece of paper or a digital file. I grew up surrounded by images of my sibling and me; my mother loved to take pictures all the time. Thanks to her, we have so many memories in the form of photographs now. I honestly believe you can re-live a moment of your life just by going through the images of it, especially when those images captured the emotions of the moment. That is what I'm all about! Of course, I love posed pictures, but I love even more those “imperfect” images where you can totally tell the person was having fun and being her or himself.
When I got married, I had such an enjoyable experience with our wedding photographer. Now, we love going back through the images and remembering all the fun we had. I want to give that experience to my couples – share their excitement on a day that will be like no other, be there for them to capture the joy, make them feel comfortable at all times and create beautiful memories for them.
What is your ideal client like?
Preppy at heart! Someone who loves simplicity and elegance, who likes details and sharing stories, who is happy and excited about celebrating life's special moments with their loved ones. I love working with people who really appreciate the value of a photo, knowing that is not just a picture but much more than that.
What is one thing you want your clients to know about you?
I want for my clients to really get how passionate I am about this, how much love and care I put into every session and every image, and how photography is really about transforming stories into images.
How would you describe your photography style?
Honest, pure, and blissful. I'm always looking for the raw emotions, the sincere smiles, the unplanned laughs, the special look in the eyes, and the hugs that evoke romanticism.
What techniques do you use to help clients feel comfortable with you and in front of the camera?
Of course, taking a deep breath is a good start. Letting go of the tension can ease the nerves. I let them know is ok to be nervous, because unless you're a model, there is no reason why you should be used to being in front of a camera. My favorite thing to do is share little stories with them so they start to forget about the camera and get more into a conversational and joyful state. That is when the best pictures are created.
What emotions do you think your images evoke?
Joy, love, happiness, empathy, and serenity
What is your approach to editing? What is the typical turn-around time for images?
I like to keep it simple, to highlight what has been captured. Editing is an important part of the process, though. It is when the pieces of the stories are put together.
For engagement and portrait sessions, the turn-around time is three weeks after the session. For weddings, it is six weeks after the wedding day. Although, sneak peeks and a blog post make their way to the world within a week after the photo shoot or wedding.
What other items do you offer?
Leather or linen-bound photo albums through KISS, high-quality prints, and customized USB devices
As Featured on Burgh Brides
- Traditional Black, White, & Red Wedding at the Priory: Cristena & Ryan
- Woodsy & Playful Anniversary Session: Carmela & Aaron