Welcome to VAIC Studio, a place where children can get messy and explore the process of making art. Thank you for visiting! I am Melissa, the artist who pretends to teach. :) When I was knee high to a grasshopper, I spent most of my spare time getting my hands dirty or making a mess with clay, mud, paint, costumes, paper, textiles....stealing my mom's Scotch tape......making things. As a teenager, I taught simple art classes to local school kids, and spent half-a-year at an orphanage in India, teaching and learning from sixty-four children in a little village outside of Hyderabad called Yerragondapalem. In 2004, I graduated from the University of Virginia with a B.A. in Studio Art, and for the past twelve years, I have taught art to people of all ages in a variety of contexts.
I believe in an age of screen-time and information overload---now more than ever--- children can benefit from slowing down, using their hands, engaging sensuous mediums. I hope to help them develop their own pattern language and inner culture. I offer an atmosphere of calm and ease, where students can learn new skills, and respond to their inner/outer world with sensitive, poetic works full of unity, and rich design.