Today we’d like to introduce you to Melissa Guzman.
Hi Melissa, so excited to have you with us today. What can you tell us about your story?
I owe my career to life experiences. My love for events came early during my childhood. Birthday parties were always a big deal in my home. My mom made sure I had a themed birthday every year and the photos to cherish for a lifetime. She was, and still is, a very creative person so a lot of what I’ve learned has come from her. I had my own children in 2010 and 2011 when I began to dabble in photography. I was able to capture my daughters’ little smiles and silly facial expressions and look back at those images year after year.
Photos are priceless, and I wanted to share my new talent with others. I took some time to learn under other photographers local to Kansas City as well as through online mentoring programs. I booked my first wedding in 2013 and have been in the event industry ever since.
In 2014, I had a wedding of my own. My husband and I had a small ceremony and reception with 50 guests and to say finding a venue and vendors who catered to small events is an understatement. Although my event was small I didn’t want it to be any less spectacular. I knew there had to be other people out there who felt the same way. So in 2018, I rebranded and added event rentals to create Elated, a photography and event rental business catering to small events.
Would you say it’s been a smooth road, and if not what are some of the biggest challenges you’ve faced along the way?
Far from smooth. I’ve ran the business while working full time, raising my two girls, and did I mention we have four, that’s right, four mastiffs! I’ve had a lot of helping hands and have outsourced some things to take them off my plate. I can’t thank my family, especially my husband, enough for helping my visions come to life and helping Elated grow.
Can you tell our readers more about what you do and what you think sets you apart from others?
Photography and Event Rentals for small events. We cater to weddings and small events under 50 guests. We love weddings, bridal showers, birthday parties, children’s birthdays, etc. We love creating custom pieces, especially backdrops. We work at all locations, home, event venues, indoor and outdoor celebrations.
Our work has been featured in Kansas City magazines as well as 100 layer cake (a popular wedding blog). https://www.100layercake.com/blog/2019/06/25/colorful-wedding-inspiration-from-the-big-fake-wedding-kansas-city/
Can you talk to us a bit about happiness and what makes you happy?
Family and friends are super important to me. With a crazy life schedule, I don’t get to see them often. When I do see them, it’s usually for some sort of celebration which pulls everything in and ties my passion for events and family together. Being a photographer, I have been able to capture that hug with an aunt you haven’t seen in 2 years, the tears when you see your grandparents who dropped in town just for your wedding day, and that last photo with your grandmother. Having been able to be a part of those moments has made me who I am and keeps me loving what I do.
Angie Scott Photography Espy
Bethany Kidd Photography