I've been working in Chewelah WA this past week as a teaching artist mentor with the Arts Impact program. I was in Kindergarten and 1st grade classes and we were doing art and literacy infused classes. It has been a lot of fun!
I was able to participate in an amazing community mosaic mural at the La Fortuna Clinic in Costa Rica. The trip was organized by Ecoteach and led by Laurel True of the Global Mosaic Project. I was a dream to work with such an incredible group of talented women and Costa Ricans....I learned so much.
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Artist Melissa Cole often finds herself snorkeling with salmon, smooching manatees, and swimming with tiger sharks. It is from these amazing encounters that she derives much of the inspiration for her vividly colored, heavily textured and patterned acrylic paintings.
Cole was born in Oregon and raised in London, Hong Kong, and India. She graduated from Oregon State University with a degree in Zoology and spent time as a naturalist guide in Mexico. She’s written over 30 children’s natural history books and travels with her husband Brandon, who is a wildlife photographer specializing in marine life. Melissa has always dabbled in art, but has spent the last ten years fully devoted to it. She is strongly influenced by ethnic patterns, which she sees in her travels abroad. “You’ll find lots of dots, and a distinct border pattern in each of my pieces.” Her work is found in galleries ranging from Stephan Fine Arts in Anchorage, Alaska to The Wild Side Gallery in Key West, Florida.