“Another Day In Paradise” And Other Work By Mike Mellia

Stories around fathers and sons are something I am more or less intrinsically drawn to. From about high school on, my relationship with my own father was tumultuous at best – it seems that we never saw eye to eye about anything. There was even a period of about two years where we didn’t say a word to one another. When he got sick, all of our differences that seemed so important and insurmountable were reduced to insignificant rubble. While I held his hand as he died, all I could think was “it wasn’t enough time.”

When New York photographer Mike Mellia unexpectedly lost his father, he did what came naturally to him: he created a wonderfully compelling and cinematic photo essay called Another Day In Paradise around the themes and places that serve as reminders of his father’s life. “The American themes and unsettling locations that emerged seemed to create a tension with the time and place they inhabited,” Mike writes. “These landscapes and surroundings unveil a cold and strangely moving beauty, a series of movie stills that tells a story through its mood.”

Another powerful set of photographs on Mike’s site is a series of stunning portraits called Our Side of the Story, which aims to draw attention to the ongoing conflict in South Sudan where more than a half-million people have been displaced. According to Artinfo, “Mellia has produced a portrait of the anguish that haunts the lives of those South Sudanese who have managed to escape, and through them, of the lives of those they left behind… born of a desire to tell the story of South Sudan by moving beyond the limitations of the media through the raw and emotive power of art.”

To see the full projects as well as more of Mike’s fantastic work, visit his site. All images © Mike Mellia and used with permission.

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