Wonderful Women Interview with Photographer Melita Kyle
Melita describes herself as, ‘a hands-on mum to two wonderful children whilst building and creating a living through her passion for photography and creativity.’ Her photography is achingly beautiful.
In the past Melita had been an active area coordinator for South Oxfordshire and board member of ‘Artweeks‘, Oxfordshire’s largest arts festival that runs every May across three areas of the county.
Currently, Melita is working with creators to help them build a visual profile and portfolio of their work alongside collaborating on events which support the Sue Ryder Hospice.
It’s a pleasure to welcome the wonderful Melita to the blog.
Describe a typical day?
Rising groggy, as I am not the best first thing, to our youngest climbing into bed who is still warm from sleep, chattering about her latest dream whilst her teenage brother still snores away is how my morning starts.
Once everyone is up, it’s that usual mixture of structure meets chaos for the school-run. Once home, I’ll refresh with a herbal tea whilst checking my social media, planning photo shoots and editing. I also l over course assignments that need doing (as I’m currently studying) as well as volunteer work I do. I then power-walk to collect the kids from school. We are currently taking part in our town’s rock project where you paint a pebble and leave it for someone to find so that makes the walk home fun!
We may bake together when we’re back home: gingerbread men are a hit in our house and if I haven’ t got organised with a slow cooker meal then it’s prepping for tea. Whilst my husband bathes our youngest, I get to catch up with my son about his day and we chat about his engineering project before he gets drawn into computer gaming!
It’s then a last check of social media and catching up with friends before relaxing on the sofa with my husband reflecting on our day.
What do you feel are your biggest achievements?
My children. I was diagnosed with PCOS (Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome) and I thought that I would never be able to have children. They were hard-won as both pregnancies and births were difficult which taught me a lot about looking after myself, my nutrition and health and gave me a profound respect for the medical world and how amazing it is.
What’s in your handbag?
A bag of almonds. Tissues too as usually someone is sneezing or has sticky hands plus for public loos as I’m the one who ends up in the cubicle that just ran out of paper! A doodle pad and pencil for those bored moments to keep my youngest entertained. A spare flat-pack bag for when I overbought the groceries! My phone as it’s my working diary too and if I haven’t put anything in there I’m totally lost as to where I should be and with whom! Sunglasses because I live in hope of those gorgeous low winter light-filled days. My camera tends to be in my small day-pack with a lens wipe cloth for fear half eaten apples might smudge it!
What are your ambitions in life?
To continue to grow older in a good state of health. To be able to watch my children’s journeys and the magical moments which accompany them, unfold with my husband by my side laughing & crying through it all together. To see more of this amazing world and to travel more to experience other wonders and cultures, settling one day near moorlands or wild coastlines so my children and grandchildren have a sanctuary to return to-and a haven for my creative work that I can share and pass on to others.
What do you wish you’d known at the start of your career that you know now?
That it isn’t enough to just be really, really good at something. It’s about learning all aspects needed to make people want to engage with your work and that means learning how to present yourself in a digital age. I hadn’t factored in how much work is involved in social media and websites and blogs to make the visibility part of my work, successful.
Where do you see yourself in 5 years time?
Easing deeper into my own skin. With a camera in one hand walking across wild moorland landscapes chasing cloudy skies!
What advice would you give a budding artist?
Listen to that inner voice chattering away for it will guide you in the right direction and to the right experiences. Be prepared for a long journey, so keep yourself nourished along the way with mentors and tutors who inspire and help push you further. Read lots of books that resonate with your work and processes and yes sometimes it does take years and years to finally get to that place of success. Don’t give up.
What do you wish you had known about motherhood before having kids?
To be honest, nothing. I was so focused on trying to become one that I didn’t really think too much about the option in case it wasn’t going to be my reality. In a way, looking back that became liberating as I have been blessed to explore this journey as an adventurer would finding a new land. Each day is a surprise and you learn as you go along, adapting and growing as a person, which never stops.
Finally, happiness is…
Watching a sunset from the beach eating fish and chips with my husband and children. Bliss!