About Me, art, and design

Photograph of Melissa Whitaker with chin on her paint-covered hands.

I have been an artist all my life. At the age of 3, I painted what others did not see--  an all-white painting which I titled “Snowman Hiding”. My Mom always thought that my having been born in Hawaii and then moving to southern California, I longed to see and touch a real snowman. I knew snowmen existed because, at age 2, I had briefly helped build one while visiting my grandparents in Missouri at Christmas. Therefore, in my mind, snowmen were just hiding in the white-topped mountains of California which were visible from my green front yard. Passion to re-experience snow drove me to try recreating my desire even at that young age.


Don’t ignore your passion; ultimately it is who you are and determines who you will become. Passion helps keep you grounded. It took a devastating year and a turn of events to get me to pick up the paintbrush again. Now, I realize that I must paint to stay grounded and to keep breathing. It’s as simple as that. 


I live in a very conservative community where people’s views are often limited by their life experiences. I hope to bring a different perspective of life to the people, hoping to encourage those who have not yet found their niche or voice in society. Art often inspires, but it can offend as well. I paint/draw life the way I see it. and while people do not always agree with my perspective, it sometimes makes some realize that everyone’s view of life matters. It is not a matter of right and wrong—just different perspectives. Is this a way to bring change to the world? Maybe. In this very conservative community I, too, often feel that my voice isn’t heard or valued, and I know that I am not alone in that feeling. My hope is that people may SEE the art message, even if they fail to hear the voice. I create so those voices may be seen, if not heard. 


My work is often full of color or, alternatively, uses a minimal amount of color. There is no in-between. I do this to create emotion in my work. The intensity of the colors brings a vitality to life as it expresses emotion. Color carries its own energy in varying degrees of wavelengths. Each color has meaning and brings about different reactions in the human psyche, and I use this color theory in my work to create a connection with the viewer.

Redux of painting in Bio

Abstract painting of blue, magenta, and yellow with the illusion of a snowman hiding.

In 2011 I recreated the Snowman Hiding picture that I did when I was a young child that was mentioned in the bio above.  The original no longer exists because of sibling rivalry. (It was destroyed shortly after it was created).  This now hangs in my mothers home.  High enough where the sibling can not reach it.  ;)   



Where To Shop

Ink illustration "The Real Estate Agent"  on Bristol.  A woman peeking over her glasses with purple, turquoise and magenta hair piled on her head with a house intertwined in the hair.

For Prints from this artist please go to Society6


or feel free to contact me:

Society6

Typical Stuff

A colorful ink illustration of a woman with red hair.  Her hair covers half of her face so that only one eye shows.  Colors are orange, red, purple and turquoise.

My Story

 I have been creating art, in one form or another, my entire life. When I am not using my creative mind, I lose focus of who I am. It is the foundation of which I am made.  I create art to explore and release the pent up emotions that encompass the life I see all around me.  The world today is a scary place, full of troubles and chaos. My art looks beyond the troubling, to the beauty that lies underneath.  There is beauty everywhere in this world, including human emotion. I try to capture that emotion in order to move people to re-examine their lives and to re-discover their passions 

Find out more
profile portrait of a woman looking up painted on an abstract background of orange, yellow, blue and purple.

My Medium

The foundation of my art has been in illustration with ink, graphite and acrylic paint on paper or canvas.  I use the power of color to emphasize the emotions that are often understated in reality.  As an artist, I am constantly looking for new materials to use for self expression.  My latest venture has been to enter the digital age through the use of a graphics tablet for graphic design uses.    



Ink and Graphite illustration of a man and woman.  He is holding her while wrapped in a blanket of flowing paint of yellow and orange.

The Muse

  

Inspiration comes from all senses. It is in the music I hear, the taste of a fine glass of wine, the sunset after a rainy day, the feel of silk on the skin, and the smell of coffee in the morning. Each of these can bring about emotion that affects the way we view the world. When driving and exploring the back roads, my mind will often wonder to the next creation or problem to be solved. I will listen to the music that is playing, and start creating thumbnail sketches in my mind, of the vision that my imagination has stumbled upon. Often times it will occupy my thoughts until I can get it down on paper or tablet, in order to move on to the next project. Inspiration is a drug that consumes the soul, and there is no peace of mind until the artwork is created.