Melissa Farlow has worked extensively in the American West for National Geographic —driving 20,000 miles for a magazine story and book on public lands—and more recently, documenting mustang herds. Another driving trip took her through South America to chronicle life along the Pan American highway for a National Geographic book titled, “ The Long Road South.” Other National Geographic Magazine stories of hers feature varied subjects—culture and climate change in the Alps and West Virginia’s mountaintop removal mining. Themes of land and people are chronicled in Alaska’s Tongass Forest, Okefenokee Swamp, Hudson Valley, Meadowlands, National Road, Kentucky Horse Country, Invasive Species, and a photo-biography of landscape designer Frederick Law Olmsted. One story required four months traveling to many of the national parks for the magazine, and a separate piece on Olympic National Park.
Before freelancing, Farlow worked as a staff photographer at the Courier-Journal and The Louisville Times newspapers. She has a Pulitzer Prize for a joint project documenting desegregation of the public schools in Louisville, KY. Her newspaper work focused on long term projects, winning awards in POYi and various contests. For two years she chronicled Pittsburgh’s changes for the Heinz Endowments.
As the economics of print dwindles the two have continued to support their documentary interests by doing advertising campaigns and corporate work. They live in Pennsylvania and Oregon.