Melissa’s career spans over seventeen years in domestic and international design and study. In 1990, she received a bachelor’s degree in visual media arts from the American University’s School of Communication. During her four year study at the University in Washington DC, she attended American University of Rome learning about Renaissance design and architecture in Rome, Italy where she lived for a year.
Upon graduation, she embarked on a career as a photographic researcher working directly with advertising and editorial clients helping them fulfill their pictorial needs. After a year, she became the manager of the research department for Pictor International.
In January 1992, craving the dynamic art scene and design potential of London’s Soho community, she left Washington DC and began her international career as a Graphic Designer within a leading UK photographic company, Sky Photographic Services. After holding that position for two years, she was promoted to graphic and digital design manager where she managed four busy designers. Melissa was also responsible for the company’s digital output facility. These duties included large format inkjet-display printing, high-resolution scanning, digital film outputting and slide creation. Design and output clients included M&C Saatchi, Estee Lauder, BAA Gatwick & Heathrow, Chanel, Mappin & Webb.
After five years with Sky, she decided to move away from the daily dealings of the output side of digital artwork and concentrate strictly on the design of large format exhibition and display work with Service Visual Communication [now owned by Imex Displays] where she was appointed senior designer after just three months of employment. Clients ranged from large corporate exhibitors [Ford/Brussels Motor Show ‘98] to retail outlets requiring holiday signage [Harrods ’97 & ‘98]. As well as being the chief designer on these projects, she was also in charge of managing these large-scale jobs from design start to print production finish. Such work included the CERN Travelling Exhibition [’97 & ‘98], The English Heritage ’97 & ‘98 Palace Tours, and the Frankfurt Book & Publishers Fair [‘97].
In March 1998, Melissa returned stateside and began her alliance with Skyline Exhibits - a tradeshow display and graphics company. Appointed as the Art Director at Tampa’s branch, Suncoast Skyline Displays and Graphics, she designed and project-managed large custom and pop-up display stands. It is here that she received recognition with a Local Addy Award for her involvment with the St. Petersburg Times "Images of The Century" millennium display.
Her responsibilities included outsourcing both stock and commissioned photography, print literature output and the production of the graphics for the displays. She also managed the meeting of art budgets, schedules and workloads for maximum design efficiency and lower costs. Clients included Walt Disney, AAA South Road Show [’00- ‘03], Kforce.com, Achieve Global, Darden Retaurants, Embry Riddle, Val-Pak/Cox Target Media, MOSI, Hard Rock Café, Shands and Digital Owl.
In 2003, Melissa left the Skyline family and launched a freelance career which has grown into her own agency. Commissions have ranged from tradeshow displays, Web sites, tri-fold brochures, newsletters and business cards to name just a few.
Clients include Beach Bistro, Ritz-Carlton, Sarasota, ExpoSource, Skyline Displays & Graphics, Ross Built Construction, Tidemark Resorts, Eat Here Consulting Services, Ellen Menard, Wagner Realty, Creative Color, Island Real Estate, RoseBay Real Estate, Fran Maxon Real Estate, Duffy's Tavern, and OrthoHelix.
Melissa has resided on Anna Maria Island for over ten years since returning from Europe.