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PH: Describe your medium and what you love most about creating?

MS: I’m a pastel artist- there aren’t many of us out there- however I honestly can’t imagine working in anything else. Pastel is a passionate, expressive, impulsive use of color. Every mark is made with intention. Each painting can take on any mood or feeling, and it can change on a whim mid-process. The freedom I feel as a result is priceless. It’s what being an artist is all about.

PH: What is one of your favorite holiday traditions?

MS: My sister and I loved to hit up the Black Friday sales. In the old days we would turn on some Christmas music in the car and be there when the stores opened at 6am. Now our holiday ritual has morphed into a combination of elaborate meal prep and child rearing, but anything I do with her by my side is always fun.

PH: What is one of the most heartwarming gifts you’ve received?

MS: It has to be the first trinket I received from my daughter when she was 4- a silver necklace from the dollar store that says “super mom”. It sits in my jewelry box as a reminder on tough days of how she views me through her eyes and how I viewed my own Mom.


Melissa Saulsbury is Richmond-based artist with a passion for finding inspiration all around her. Specializing in the pastel medium, her work is saturated with rich color and dynamic compositions to bring the everyday to life on paper.

You may often see her painting in plein air with her easel or pulling off the road to snap photos of scenes to paint in her studio. While she enjoys painting farm landscapes of her native Virginia and her travels through the Coastal Carolina’s, her favorite subjects are her children – immortalizing the fleeting, treasured moments of childhood for years to come.

An art lover from an early age, Melissa pursued a career in business and kept art as a hobby for much of her life.  Her passion for art has since become her business while raising 2 kids at home.

Melissa is a member of the Pastel Society of America, Mid-Atlantic Pastel Society and the American Impressionist Society.



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