"My hobby grew into a job that I didn’t know existed." - @melissamale

Melissa Male will make you hungry. A self-proclaimed professional at eating pizza and maintaining composure while over caffeinated, her feed features breakfasts, brunches, lunches, dinner, and coffee. Lots of coffee. Get to know the New York creator, what inspires her, and who she follows.

How and why did you get into content creation?

I actually started my Instagram as a hobby – iPhone photography was a creative outlet for me. I particularly enjoyed documenting brunch/coffee dates with friends in New York City. From there my hobby grew into a job that I didn’t know existed! Content creation is great because it allows me to partner with brands I never would have dreamed of working with and allows me the freedom of working from almost anywhere.

Where do you find your inspiration?

I often find inspiration in daily rituals and simple moments. Every day we have something to be grateful for even if it’s a good cup of coffee in the morning or enjoying a meal with friends. My photos don’t have to be extravagant or over the top in order for me to connect with people from all over the world. I like my page to feel accessible, relatable, and oftentimes imperfect.

How do you decide what to share and what to keep private?

My page is heavily focused on things that don’t involve me directly, so it’s generally easy for me to draw the boundaries between what and what not to share. For example, I rarely use Instagram as a platform to speak about any personal issues, family, or politics. I feel like I know my audience pretty well and I try not to post anything that doesn’t seem interesting or relevant.

What is the best-kept secret in New York?

I’m a bit biased, but I was born and raised in the suburbs about an hour outside of NYC, so I think that most people don’t realize how many great little towns are just outside the city. There’s so much that upstate New York has to offer and it’s all fairly easy to get to!

Any tips and tricks you'd like to share with other creators?

The best advice I can give any creator is to be consistent and stick with the personal brand you’ve created. Try not to go too off brand when considering jobs. Be clear about expectations in terms of collaborations and brand partnerships. Most importantly, try not to compare yourself or your work to others. Your style and aesthetic is uniquely you, and that’s what makes it great.

What camera and editing software do you use?

I shoot exclusively with my iPhone 7 and edit using VSCO and Snapseed.

How would you describe your aesthetics?

I think my aesthetic can be described as cohesive with muted colors and tones.

Tell us something no one knows about you.

I have an absolute obsession with paper goods and stationery. I always have a notebook on hand no matter what.

What's been your favourite piece of work to date?

My favorite collaboration so far was one I did with a boutique hotel (@stay_lokal), which involved me staying in their A-frame cabin for a night. The property was just gorgeous and I was able to bring my dog along and use him in some of the photos. They were so happy with the content and I truly enjoyed the entire experience.

The best thing about being a creator?

The best thing about being a creator is having the freedom to travel and create on my own schedule. Leaving my 9-5 job has opened up so many doors for me and brought me so much happiness.

Favourite people to follow on Instagram?

Unsurprisingly, one of these accounts is a dog:

@stevenfingar
@thetrottergirl
@hellohoku
@ss0522

If you could give one piece of advice to your younger self, what would it be?

“Think about what you want and put in the work to get it, but enjoy everything else along the way.”

Follow Melissa here: @melissamale