A love of horses first spurred Melissa’s early interest in drawing. Today she can most often be found creating abstract mixed media collages or painting landscapes in watercolor or pastel. She has recently become interested in creating visual journals, altered books and Artist Trading Cards in addition to her painting.
Melissa is a National Board Certified art educator with over 19 years experience teaching elementary, middle, high school and adult students. She received a BS degree in Art Education from East Carolina University and a MA degree in Painting and Printmaking from the University of North Dakota in Grand Forks. She has continued to study painting with well known artists and instructors Robert Burridge, Bob Rankin, Joe Deguilio, Sterling Edwards, and Jack Shields. Melissa is a member of the Pastel Association of North Carolina and the North Carolina Watercolor Association as well as a long time member of the North Carolina Art Education Association. She recently had 3 artist journal pages published in the book, “1000 Artist Journal Pages,”, by Dawn DeVries Sokol.
Melissa teaches art at Randleman High School in Randleman, NC and has also offered numerous art workshops to artists and teachers alike. Her students have won numerous awards and she has inspired many to pursue an art career of their own.
Melissa’s work is influenced by abstract expressionism and incorporates many mixed media elements. She loves the intuitive experimentation and discovery involved in creating abstract art. The interaction of colors and shapes on a surface, the tension between lights and darks, the blended edge versus the hard line have long fascinated her. Building layers with collage, and adding gestural lines, as well as journaling and stamping are just some of the techniques she currently incorporates into her art.
Melissa lives in Seagrove, NC with her husband of 33 years, Ed Walker. Ed is an artist himself and owns Carolina Bronze Sculpture, a fine art bronze casting foundry.
click on the thumbnail pictures below to see the full painting