Originally from Hawai'i, it was easy for Makena to be truly inspired by the beauty and people surrounding her when she was given her first Nikon from her mother at thirteen years old. She began developing film in the darkroom and continued into the digital world as she went onto graduate with a B.A. in Commercial Advertising from Brooks Institute of Photography in Santa Barbara. Her background has given her a well-rounded education in professional lighting techniques and advanced retouching, which allows her to achieve the highest quality photos. She has worked with several well-known photographers over the years in developing her own style.
Makena has embraced her passion as a professional photographer in Los Angeles photographing and retouching everything from weddings, to sports, to events, and fashion. She worked for 3 years as an in-house Photo Retoucher in the studio for fashion retailer Guess? Jeans Inc. Makena has now moved to having a prospering freelance business called Advanced Retouching with clients including Guess? Jeans, Hulu, and fashion/apparel companies Topson Downs' new brand Arrive Clothing & Reformation. She is also busy shooting premieres and events year-around of multiple TV series for Hulu.
She is an Associate Photographer for celebrity wedding photographer, Michael Segal, and has shot N'SYNC's Lance Bass' wedding, as well as Beverly Hills Housewife Taylor Armstrong.
Retouching clients include; Guess? Jeans Inc. and Thomas Wylde, as well as her past experience with celebrity fashion photographers, Williams & Hirakawa and Calvin Klein. She has many retouching publications in several magazines including Vogue Italia, Vanity Fair, Flaunt Magazine, Cosmopolitan Magazine, Traveler Magazine, C Magazine, Black Book, Women's & Men's Health Magazine, and Snowboarder Magazine.
You'll find Makena stand-up paddle boarding in the summer, avidly snowboarding in the winter, and traveling in her spare time.
Based in Venice, CA she is available to travel anywhere to shoot your wedding, event, or portrait as well as any retouching services needed!