Pro Files | Malia Battilana


March’s feature photographers is:

Malia Battilana

Malia B Photography


Describe yourself in your own words?

I’m a little bit of a free-spirit and I love people! I often day dream, love to laugh and could eat desert for dinner any day. I’ve lived in Phoenix, Arizona all my life and fall in love with the desert more and more everyday.  I’m a mom of 3 and a wife of almost 13yrs.  I try to live a full life trying “most” things once and I feel I’ve made my very best choices in life using my intuition.

What inspired you to become a photographer?

I used to be an elementary school teacher. I knew my passion had taken over my life when I was teaching at school and during the day I dreamed about the photographs and emotional moments I wanted to capture more so than the math I wanted to teach!


What do you feel sets you apart as a photographer?

I’m a sucker for emotion, creativity and being unique with all things. I’m not afraid to be myself and do “ out of the box!”  My intent is for my photography to represent moments that evoke that from others and carried on through generations. My passion and love is in newborn photography and maternity photography. There is just something so simple and organic about it. I hope to continue to grow within myself as an artist and inspire other to do the same to find their path.


Your current favorite image and why?

This is one of my favorite images because it is when I feel in love with maternity portraiture. I’d been looking for weeks for a spot of whimsical, I wanted water. Being in the desert that is really hard to find. I stumbled upon this location and I knew it was perfect, so during her session when she put on her white dress, crown of baby’s breath and stepped into the water, I’m not kidding when I say, I felt the sky illuminated and felt I heard a choir sing “Awwwwww…” My jaw dropped in awe of how beautiful this time for her was, how she didn’t get a chance to do this with her first child and how I was a special part of making something magical happen.


Describe your dream session?

I wouldn’t say I have one particular dream session I have several.  I’ve started a photographers bucket list for myself to plan, create and shoot when I’m feeling a need to stir things up a bit. I’ve found some of my bucket list shoots are one other photographers lists too. So we’ve collaborated and set up sessions together. Now that was a dream for me!

Is photography your full time job?

Yes and loving every minute (well… except for maybe the long editing days!)


Top three pieces of advice for someone looking to start their own business?

Just pay attention, listen, step back and wait. A moment will happen. Look for love not technicalities. That’s a lot more than 3!

What’s the biggest mistake you have made thus far?

Remembering I can’t do everything myself… I must surround myself with the right supporters and collaborators

What has surprised you the most about your photography  journey?

Knowing my greatness by making mistakes!


It’s no secret that balance between personal and work is tough. How do you nurture both?

I feel like I finally realized that there might not be 100% balance between work and personal. Maybe I just gave up my unrealistic expectation of what it should look like and that helped! Some weeks might be overloaded with shoots and editing and my personal could feel off and other weeks I barely step into my office.  I think my balance comes more from within and if I’m feeling satisfied in the direction both are going (whether one is getting more attention at that time than the other) as long as both my personal and work is transforming and growing and not stagnate I feel nurtured.

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What photographer has inspired you the most on your journey?

When I was little I was OBSESSED with Anne Geddes. I had all her baby posters, dolls and collectables.  Now looking back I was inspired with the magic she brought out when I looked at the image.  As I’ve grown up I still believe in a little magic myself and was inspired to have freedom to create beyond my imagination.

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Meagan Opel

Meagan is a wife, mother of three, animal hoarder, and passionate photographer. She hates wearing shoes, loves Murder She Wrote, and is starting an adventure in dutch oven cooking.

She started down the road of photography with a gentle push from her husband and hasn’t looked back. She loves being able to capture those “real life” moments that can slip by in the blink of an eye. Like most photographers with kids, Meagan became fascinated (obsessed) with photographing her children from second she laid eyes on them, and loves helping others hone their photography skills to better capture their own children.

Meagan is our instructor for Get Grounded in Photoshop, and is also our official Operations Queen. She keeps everyone organized, scheduled, and on track with blogging, Happy Hour, Extra Credit, communication, customer service, and anything else that keeps TPE operating on a day to day basis just for you!

When she isn’t working for TPE, running her own business, or running after her own three small kiddos she enjoys being outdoors, cooking, spending time with her animals, and swimming.