Here’s a little something new we added to our studio… the Inferno Wings! These gorgeous gray wings can be added on to your session as an additional set. We can set the scene for a moody dark angel or maybe you want something a little more heavenly. What will you be?
It’s been a while since I introduced myself. I’m Mell Bell… yes THE Mell Bell of mellBella Photography. I’m the photographer, artist, creative, designer, ride or die, never gonna give you up, cheerleader, etc. kind of person. My pronouns are she/her.
I’ve been a photographer with Richard Bell Photography since 2005. So I got my start in wedding and family portrait photography with my husband, Nathan, son of Richard Bell. I’m so thankful to be a part of the family business, but something was missing. In 2010, I photographed my first boudoir session, and after that, I knew THIS was the missing piece. So, with a lot of planning, long hours, and hard work, I founded the mellBella Brand with my dear friend. (Naming the company, Richard Bell Boudoir wasn’t going work. Totally not sexy at all!) Over the years, we’ve added pinup, styled, sets, a client closet, and so many things. Every year, I introduce a few new things that help make the mellBella Experience even better. Always thinking and growing!
Because I feel it’s important to have a great relationship with my clients, we should get to know each other a little bit. So here goes…
- One of my favorite local organizations is the YWCA Greater Charleston. Their mission of eliminating racism and empowering women is very important to me.
- I have 2 daughters that are 8 years apart in age. What a BIG surprise indeed!
- I’m awkward and empathetic, but my super power is embracing the awkward and making people feel comfortable.
- I love my freckles, and I call them angel kisses.
- Flip flops are my shoe of choice, but I’ll rock a pair of heels for the right occasion.
- I wish I could do hair and makeup, but I leave that to the professionals.
- I pay homage to Lucille Ball with all my facial expressions.
- My favorite drinks are Coke Zero, Jack Daniels, Espolòn Tequila, Diet Dr Pepper, and of course water.
- I can eat ALL the pasta, pizza, and ice cream any time.
- I celebrate birthdays, anniversaries, and other special occasions with an impromptu dance party.
- Some of my favorite TV Shows are: POSE, Grey’s Anatomy, Schitt’s Creek, Supernatural, Queen Sugar, Chilling Adventures of Sabrina, Ru Paul’s Drag Race, Steven Universe, and more!
- I have too many movies to narrow down, but we’ll start with Crazy Rich Asians, Black Panther, Spider Man: Into the Spider-verse, and COCO are my more recent favs.
- My musical preference depends on the day or mood.
And finally I’ll end with a non Photoshopped boudoir photo of me, taken by me, and quote that is a mantra of mine.
“You are a very special person. There is only one like you in the whole world. There’s never been anyone exactly like you before, and there will never be again. Only you. And people can like you exactly as you are.” — Fred Rogers
For this One Image Wednesday, I wanted to share one portrait from our Over-the-Bed camera. We love dressing up the bed with complimentary colors to really set the mood. We love a messy bed! Whether you want go bold or more natural, we customize the look on the bed for you. For the Bella, we used black, gold, pink, and just for fun a rose gold necklace from our mellBella Closet. Her black lace shoes are also available from our mellBella Closet. What are your favorite colors?
Figuring out how to prepare for your boudoir session may seem overwhelming, but I’m going to let you in on a little secret:
At mellBella Photography, boudoir prep is EASY! All you have to do is take a deep breath and check out the following tips…
Determine Your Desired Look
Do you want your shoot to be full-on sexy or sort of sweet? Do you want to go Over the-top glamorous or more natural? Do you want to go nude, partially nude, wear lingerie, a favorite t-shirt, or pjs? Your desired look for the session will help us pick the best sets/lighting. details, wardrobe, and props for your photo shoot. And it’s totally fine if you don’t know. Just pick one outfit you like, and we’ll take it from there.
Find a Specialist
Boudoir portraiture is a niche art form, so you must be very discerning when choosing a photographer. It’s crucial to do your research—browse their portfolios and read client testimonials. Since boudoir is such an intimate and vulnerable experience, it’s essential you find someone whom you trust and feel comfortable around. We’ve been boudoir photographers since 2010 and have photographed hundreds of clients, and we love giving our Bellas the best experience! But don’t just take our word for it… check out our reviews on Google and The Knot. We’re currently in the process of updating our website, but be sure to check out our Instagram and Facebook pages and stories to see what we’re up to now.
Start by shopping your closet for the items you instinctively select when you want to feel (and look) your absolute best. Don’t stress over this. If you feel lost, just bring one bra/panty set, one bodysuit, and one wildcard (like something from our mellBella Closet or your birthday suit). Have fun with it! Be sure to check out our What to Wear section on our website. And if you still have questions, please contact us. We’ll help style you.
Prep Mind, Body, and Skin
Drink LOTS of water. Lower your salt intake and abstain from alcohol for a few days before your shoot to avoid water retention. Treat yourself to a mani/pedi, if you like. Bathe, shower, and moisturize. Enjoy a quiet evening and get a full night’s sleep before the day of your session. (Or at least try to!) It’s a good idea to do some stretches the day before as well.
Take a deep breath and relax. It’s completely normal to feel nervous before your shoot. We promise, it will be a fun, stress-free day that’s all about YOU. We’ll guide you through every step, and you won’t have to worry about what to do with your hands. Trust us, you’ll be coming back for more!
If you would like more information on booking a session with mellBella Photography for the best boudoir experience, CONTACT US.
It’s time for another What To Wear Wednesday! So what’s good option that you can wear right now and/or for a photo shoot? Comfy tank tops, of course. (Bra optional). I’ve been living in comfy tank tops lately too. They’re convenient, inexpensive, and cool for those warm summers days. Plus, if you’re working from home and you’re not on a video conference, no one knows what you’re wearing anyways.
This One Image Wednesday — Grab that off the shoulder sweater and SHOW OFF those shoulders! OR take a sweater that is a few sizes too big for a similar look. Neutral colors like gray are great, but don’t be afraid of a pop of color. Plus, you’ll be so comfy too. Just wear it.
Happy Wednesday! It’s always a struggle to figure out what to wear for your photo shoot. But what about that dress you love?!? It doesn’t have to be a ballgown, but it could be. It doesn’t have to be your wedding dress, but it COULD be. It could even be that dress you wore on your first date, your anniversary, or your birthday. OR maybe it’s just your favorite dress that you wear to the beach. Don’t think I CAN’T WEAR THAT! Bring it to your mellBella session to see that dress in a whole new way.
Mell Bell and Wanda and I were recently on a Podcast. And not just any old Podcast but it was Weddings from the Pros!!! A local and amazing Podcast filled with lots of great info for wedding planning, but of course, we put on our spin on it. On the pod, we chatted with Nathan Whitworth of Angled Light Photography and Kendall Kapanzhi of Wedding Festivals.
While we did talk about boudoir photography as it relates to a wedding gift, there’s soooo much more about one core beliefs, our process, our experience, and lots of answers to common boudoir questions. Like, why do a boudoir session? And, how do you choose a boudoir photographer? So check it out and let us know what you think.
Let’s do this!
Happy New Year from mellBella! It’s 2020. It’s a new year and with that it means there fresh excitement for change, hope, and love. For growing, dreaming and achieving, building a better world filled with justice and love, making positive connections, for surviving and getting through, gratitude, and as always kindess.
We don’t know what all this new year holds. Some people say 2020 is the year of clear vision…haha. But we have some ideas and dreams that we look forward to bringing to you this year.
Our motto for this year is timeless advice:
“If you can’t love yourself, how in the hell are you gonna love somebody else!” RuPaul
Thank you for your trust, your support, and just being yourself. To 2020!
The age old question… What To Wear? We at mellBella are going to bring you a series of some of our favorite picks at varying price points. Sometimes you want fine lingerie, something unique, or sometimes you just need the easiest thing available. Keep in mind some items are way more comfortable to wear, and this post is just a place to get started. The most important thing is to be yourself or find something in that color you love. Each image is even linked to the Amazon Page, just for you. Keep in mind prices on Amazon may change frequently, and the images are from the companies that made these products. Without further ado, here are our Top 25 Picks Under $25 on Amazon.