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Melissa McMinn

I am a full time artist specializing in traditional hand engraving, leather working, and painting.  Born and raised in Kansas, I graduated college then headed westward, landing in Southern California and spending over a decade in the Los Angeles area.  During this time I held various corporate positions within the Life Sciences industry, always pursuing my arts as a part time business and hobby.  In 2016, with the encouragement and support of my now husband,  I left the corporate world and the hustle bustle of Los Angeles to pursue my passions and craft full time.  We made the leap, and relocated to the picturesque mountains just outside Yosemite National Park.  During this time we were able to live simply and start my business, as well as do some domestic traveling to seek out places we might want to make a more permanent home.  We found that place in St. Augustine, FL, the oldest settlement in the US, and made the more there in the summer of 2018.  

All mediums I work in afford me the opportunity to carry on traditions and skill sets that are quickly becoming lost arts.  To me, and to my clients, there is a charm and romanticism to a traditionally, painstakingly crafted item, that cannot be reproduced by modern methods.  From the charm and distinctiveness of a bench made, hand tooled leather bag, the long flowing pinstripe lines running from the hand wrapped ferrel of a Mack brush, to the curl of metal coming off the end of a graver as each cut is made to construct an intricate engraving pattern.  Each is meant to bring years, decades, or with engraving, even centuries worth of inspiration and delight to their owner or onlooker.  It is my great privilege to carry on these crafts, to study and learn from many of the masters of each trade, and to create one of a kind artworks for my clients.

 

Awards

2016:  Golden Graver Award Presented by Master Engraver Sam Alfano