Melissa Leslie is thought provoking Artist, Author, Health Advocate and Entrepreneur.
As a persistent brand builder, Leslie is internationally known for her fine art reflecting musical inspirations and deeply symbolic works depicting spiritual thought processes, experiences and revelations. She has dedicated over two decades defining her craft through oil paint, fashion design, graphic design, film, photography and showing all along the west coast in galleries and art events.
Born in the Midwest, her childhood was marked early on with racist incidences that would set a course of shaping her thinking about what it is to be a minority, a female and an artist in a small blue collar town set among fields of corn and cows. Before she was to find her unique style of art she would first have to make sense of it all through journaling her experiences on canvas, a safe space to divulge her spiritual milestones.
Her escape strategy by way of a school loan was presented to her in 2004 and without question jumped at the opportunity to attend the Academy of Art. Her dream city, San Francisco, became her home for the next couple culturally enthralling yet spiritually bizarre years. Those short yet trying years would forever alter her art career leading to one of her well known pieces, "City of Hendrix" in 2005. In skipping class and pursuing her career, she frequented underground reggae clubs and began showing and doing live art in galleries and clubs.
During her time in Orange County in 2007-2009 she began creating works reflecting her love of the ocean and jazz with multimedia pieces that sold almost as soon as she created them. She broke free from the concrete jungle and was GREEN beginning to express herself on canvas in a new and unique way. It was there; Laguna Beach, Dana Point and other beach cities, that she would discover her passion for healthy living, recipe development and her life journey to help others reach healing and healthy lifestyles.
In 2010 she spent her free time raising up another generation of creative entrepreneurs through her online magazine she started with her husband and fellow artist, Daniel Quinones, MLoveizm Magazine in a 6800 sqft old light building set inSouth Central Los Angeles. During that time she focused on the action sports and fashion industry creating multiple clothing lines from her years working with and creating all store buys for mainstream brands. Major brands have also taken notice of her talent and collaborated in a myriad of signature series projects such as Hart and Huntington, Sullen, Chester Bennington of Linkin Park, Metal Mulisha, Carey Hart etc. That year she began painting 'Heaven, Earth and the In-Betweens' a body of personal experiences reflecting heart break, regret, false power and a shift in her trajectory.
Her experimental audacity would be put to test in her collaboration with the band 'Icon For Hire' for 'Off With Her Head' in 2011 where she took on the fashion, styling, make-up, hair, set design and lighting.
Leslie took account for all her years developing her craft and began defining her why in 2014. Everything she had done was pressing in to raise a higher conscience to those around her. She specifically zeroed in on creating her one personal signature brand, Sticky Rice, that had heart, substance and practicality for sustainability to restore women and children brought out of human trafficking. Her hopes is to raise their own sense of value, identity and purpose and magnify the powerful voices they have to those who may still be 'voiceless'.
In 2015 Leslie began to co-create her best works through the pinnacle of what her body could do, birth. Poetica and Ethica are now her main focus as she documents memories of life as a Mother and advocate to natural birth and women's rights. Her creative time is made use by producing works driven by the notion that 'we are not promised tomorrow', a notion that beautifully haunts and propels her to spend her time on things that matter to her legacy. Her children have reignited her passion to instill identity and value as foundational building blocks through writing and watercolor illustrations continuing the Sticky Rice brand through whimsical storytelling with substance in her first children's book "Princesses With Purpose".
Melissa has exhibited in galleries such as the 111 Minna, NOHO Gallery and The Artery. She has also shown and painted live at pop-up events for clubs and openings such as Cannibal Flower, Tiny Stage, Space Gallery, Sullen Art Show, The Light Gallery, Club Six, Takeuchi Gallery, The Abbey, The Conga Room LA Live and more.
In the early 2006 Artist Melissa and Husband Daniel founded POAB DESIGNS. POAB Designs is a full service multimedia, design, art and production house.
We specialize in creating for the local advertising world by creating TV commercials, e-mailers, web banners and social content that reflect the fast paced monthly changes from corporate incentives.
We handle TV, motion design, film treatment, editing, commercials, filming, marketing, advertising, web, social, print, animation, music videos, cinematography, photography, screen printing, apparel production, cut & sew, graphic tees, etc. VIEW WORK
CLIENTS: Ford, Disney, Nike, Chevy, Nissan, Toyota, Dodge, Ecko, Adidas, Quicksilver, Vans, Rock Star, Plan B, Disney, Urban Outfitters, Harley Davidson, Dragon, Roxy, Hurley, Hello Kitty, Alpinestars, Metal Mulisha, Aqua 6, Bassaholics, Billabong, DC Shoes, Etnies, MLove, PoabStyle, Sullen, Dream Works, Sanctioned Violence, FMF, SRH, Silver Star, Vecel, Hart&Huntington, Regular Hero, Rock Smith, Primitive Shoes, Mavado, VonZipper, Rolling Stones, In God’s Hands, Oneill, Tillys, Skulls&Scrolls, Eldon, Infamous, Vindicated, Ryan Sheckler, Life Guard, Beach Candy, First Light Surf, Gods Rainbow, Dr. Seuss, Vimby, Dust Bunny, Raw B, Metallica, Love & Death, Three Days Grace, Propaganda (Humble Beast), The Whosoevers, Somebody Loves You, Suburban Noize, POD, Hed PE, Kotton Mouth Kings,Genetics, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Avenged Seven Fold, Walt Disney Pictures, Jerry Bruckheimer Films, Mac Haik