Melissa Stephens paints with melted beeswax and damar resin, a medium called encaustic painting. The artist connects with her viewers in a personal way by visually transcribing her family's stories and traditions. Stephens also creates based on the stories of others. By creating a visual reference, she is able to share her experiences, lessons and perceptions.
When asked about her inspiration, Stephens says,
"When people express themselves through stories and uphold their traditions, I am able to learn more about them and see the world through their eyes. Sometimes in my attempt to understand, I start running down a different path, exploring their experience in ways that relate to my life. I visually explore how similar people are, even if our lives are clearly different. There is so much that we can learn from each other by staying true to ourselves and our journey."
Stephens is always looking and listening for her next inspiration.