Melissa “Mellen” Reinbold - Bio

Mellen grew up playing in the small swath of forest behind her childhood home in suburban Allentown, Pennsylvania. Climbing trees barefoot and eating wild plants while she would dream up colorful characters and worlds. She is a graduate of Kutztown University with a BFA in Graphic Design, where she also received the Don Breter Excellence in Illustration Award. Also traditionally trained as a tattoo artist with over 3 years experience, she is armed with a wide variety of skills. No matter the medium, her careful pen strokes create iconic imagery that’s emotional, honest, and impossible to forget. After working for Crayola at the start of her career, she headed out on a year-long adventure living and working full-time in a 20ft RV. Now a full-time freelance artist, she may have stopped roaming for now, but still enjoys exploring her new home in Bethlehem, PA. When she’s not working, you can find her walking through the park identifying edible plants, cooking imaginative dishes from her findings, or belting her heart out at Karaoke (seriously). She’s a lover of the natural world, yet thrives in the warming glow of technology. She also really likes loose leaf tea.

Artist's Statement

“I love silence and solitude. Only recently have I found these things so comforting, and become so at peace with myself and my place in the world when I am alone. A lot of my personal work and poetry reflect those feelings, but also reflect the dark and self-critical aspects of my mind as well. I can be giggly, cute, and funny one minute, and I can be somber, brooding and macabre the next. Immortalizing my daily struggle with Bi-polar disorder in both poetry and paintings helps me work through the fog and share my experiences with others. More often than not, my positive outlook wins and a colorful world full of soft and smiling creatures takes center stage. Yet, even when the negativity does take over, I always hide a small spark of hope in the darkness.”