Melodie McDaniel

Melodie McDaniel

Melodie McDaniel is a still photographer and director who works with equal fluency between the worlds of fashion, music, fine art and commercials.

As a teenager, she worked on a kibbutz and apprenticed under an architectural photographer at Technion, the Israel Institute of Technology. After graduating from the Art Center College of Design in 1992 with a degree in photography, Melodie found her first professional success producing photos for album artwork, winning a Grammy award for images she contributed to a Suzanne Vega special package. This success led to further and continued photographic work for a diverse group of musicians including Smashing Pumpkins, Cat Power, Pharrell Williams, My Morning Jacket and Lilly Allen, among many others.

After her first self-produced short film – a two-minute experimental piece titled Saving the Eskimo (1994) – caught the eye of Nike executives, Melodie directed a PSA for the brand titled What If There Were No Sports?, which featured Michael Jordan. Soon thereafter, she found herself directing music videos for celebrated artists including Madonna, The Cranberries, Porno for Pyros, Mazzy Star, Blonde Redhead, and Patti Smith. In 1999, she directed her first documentary, Little Jimmy Scott: Why Was I Born?
To date, Melodie has helmed over 200 spots for a diverse clientele including Nike, Target, Miller Genuine Draft, Wrangler, Yahoo, Zune, Sony, Disney, Coach, Levi’s, Bank of America, and Delta.

Melodie continues her work as a photographer, and her ground breaking images can be found in magazines such as Dazed and Confused, Interview, Vogue Homme International, GQ, Spin, Arena, L’Uomo Vogue and Another Magazine, for whom she completed an experimental film portrait of musician/actress/style icon, Charlotte Gainsbourg. Her black & white portrait of Angelina Jolie was featured on the cover of TIME Magazine.

Melodie recently travelled to Rwanda and Ethiopia to shoot stills for a project for the Nike Foundation called, The Girl Effect. She went into the homes and schools of young girls and documented them at their most open moments. She recently photographed Doug Aitken’s Station to Station public art project sponsored by Levi’s.

Melodie is editing a retrospective book of her photographs as well as exploring opportunities to develop her first feature film project.