Melissa Milton is a native of Fayetteville, Arkansas who was born during the turbulent 1960’s and came of age in the groovy 1970’s. The colorful clothing, interior décor, and art of those decades influences her artistic expression. The family of colors and designs associated with those eras frequently find their way into her artwork, especially in tertiary blends (colors made up of three or more other colors).
She is a former attorney who began creating art late in life after becoming disabled by a neurological disorder. She mostly paints while lying down due to physical limits with standing up and sitting up. The neurological disorder, Dysautonomia, basically involves one's nervous system giving incorrect instructions to one's body, especially the circulatory system. The body’s circulatory system no longer copes well with the effects of gravity. This has not only heavily influenced her art, it has been the very reason for its existence.
Although she is limited in her movements on land, Melissa moves about quite well in the low gravity environment of water. She therefore spends a lot of time in water. The daily hours spent moving about freely in water have played a large role in influencing her art. Water is her freedom. The figures or objects in her artwork often glide about effortlessly with water’s weightlessness and fluidity. The paint layers are themselves often translucent like water.
The daily time spent in water has also led to her taking up underwater photography. The inspiration for this occurred one evening while she was admiring the way the pool lights danced around upon and inside of the water . It occurred to her that underwater photographs of people might be very beautiful, especially if taken at night. She began photographing people underwater and then later painting upon those photographs. She also photographs colored liquids moving about in clear water. The results often resemble vibrantly colored clouds.
Melissa creates art mainly because she enjoys doing so. She also enjoys listening to other people’s reactions to and interpretations of what she creates. Her third pleasure from creating her art has come from various people expressing to her that it has made them feel hopeful. She has been pleasantly surprised to learn that creating her art has served as an inspiration to some people because it makes them feel that they may likewise transform their own life challenges into something positive.
Melissa realizes that if she had not become physically disabled, her art would not exist. Her medical problems run in the family, so she feels they are probably inherited and thus painting is what she was apparently meant to do this at this time in her life. She is having a lot of fun creating the artwork and hopes you find enjoyment in it as well.