We had the good fortune of connecting with Melody Lomboy-Lowe and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Melody, is there something that you feel is most responsible for your success?
The most important thing to us is creating a platform for survivors to share their story. By creating Luna Peak Foundation, survivors feel empowered to share their stories and learn from others. We have a lot more in common than we think, and it’s nice to have the reminder that others have walked a similar path. Our definition of success is helping others get through difficult times. A big part of healing is knowing that you’re not alone – our books and online community are centered on healing together. We do this through storytelling, photos, and advice.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
Our art is based in photography and writing. The photography humanizes the taboo topic of cancer and makes it a more approachable and relatable subject. We go deeper than just showing visual images by interviewing the subjects and diving deeper into their journey. We are curious about how they have thrived through seemingly impossible circumstances. We hope to evoke an emotional response and promote healing among our audience. We prioritize showcasing diverse subjects as well, because we know that representation matters. The challenge was making sure that our subjects trusted us to take their portraits and to hear their story. In order to open up a safe space, we made it clear that we had a shared experience. When subjects learned that I was a cancer survivor too, their faces lit up, and they immediately wanted to exchange “war” stories with cancer. There is nothing like a survivor-to-survivor connection, and we are thankful to capture this in photos and quotes in our book, “Beyond Remission.” We want the world to know that Luna Peak Foundation is an organization that will show you firsthand that you are not alone, no matter what adversity you face. It is our mission to give survivors a voice, and to celebrate life despite these universal challenges that we all face.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
We love getting outdoors and the views in Palos Verdes make you feel like you’re getting outside of the city for a bit. One of our favorite activities is starting a hike in Abalone Cove and finishing at Terranea Resort to get gelato at Sea Beans. Abalone Cove is a nature preserve that also has tide pools. It’s a great break from reality and you get the mountains and the ocean at the same time.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
My sister, Dr. Linda Rillorta, has been an invaluable source of support across the years. She has dedicated her life to listening to the stories of students, oftentimes stories of overcoming adversity, and is a natural mentor and source of healing. We would also love to give a shoutout to all of the 100+ amazing cancer survivors who chose to share their stories with us in our book, “Beyond Remission.”