Thank you for your interest in my artwork. If you enjoy my style, but don't find exactly what you are looking for in my Available Originals gallery, a commission piece is a great way to get the exact size, subject and colors you desire. It is fun for me to work with people on specific colors, textures, backgrounds, borders, subjects and sizes. Commissions are among my favorite things to do, offering me new challenges and ideas to work on. I find it rewarding to create a custom piece for someone and know that when I am finished my artwork has a good home to go to. Commissions are fun and easy to do. Just check out the directions below to see how you can order a custom piece of art small or large, specifically tailored for you! And, scroll down the page further to see actual examples of preliminary sketches and their corresponding finished artwork.

If you are interested in commissioning a piece of artwork, the process is quite simple:

1) The first thing to do is choose your dimensions. I often create works of art for specific areas in a home or business (thin horizontals over fireplaces, narrow verticals beside windows, large triptychs for expansive walls, small squares for bathroom or kitchen nooks, etc.). I charge approximately $300 per square foot (so a 12" x 24" would be around $600, for example). I usually take a half down deposit to get started and accept MasterCard, Visa, check, or money order. I can also set up a payment plan if you would prefer.

2) The second thing to choose is your subject, paying attention to colors, backgrounds, textures, and borders when you look through the website. I can either combine a number of paintings (if you like the subject in one, the water in another and border in a third, for example), or paint something similar to an existing painting, keeping in mind that every painting is unique. I can also paint new subjects although my style will remain the same. I prefer animals, botanicals, landscapes or people (though no exact likenesses of people or pets please).

3) The third thing to choose is your medium. I work with acrylic on canvas, wood, clay and metal or a combination (Please see three dimensional "puzzle" paintings). When working on wood, I am able to add accents such as fused glass and stone tiles, wood moldings, and sculpted clay (fired and air-dried) to add three-dimensionality.

4) After you have chosen your size, subject, and medium I will do a rough sketch and email or snail mail it to you for approval. You are able to make any changes you would like. Most commissions can be completed in 3-5 weeks, depending upon my schedule. When I am finished I will send you a photo of the completed piece. If you approve it, I will collect the second half plus shipping and send it out to you. If you are not satisfied with the finished piece (which hasn't happened in over 50 commissions!) I can make changes, or return your deposit.


“I have a deep love for the artwork Melissa created for us. Her ability to really listen was evident in the elements she included in the piece. Our entire family loves the painting and feels proud to have it in a central place of honor in our home.  Our experience of working with Melissa was outstanding. I was nervous, since I don’t come from a background or family that “purchases art.” Melissa was always kind, down-to-earth and straight forward. She made the entire process very accessible.” Teresa S., Spokane, WA

“We were very impressed how Melissa could transform our conversations about what we’d like to include into a finished work that has a number of touchstones from our life. Seeing the watercolor preliminary sketch reassured us about the investment we were making. It was the first time we ever purchased commissioned artwork and the experience exceeded our expectations both in the process and the finished product.” Sheila and Paul Brunton, Spokane, WA

“I have worked with Melissa purchasing artwork for our pediatric clinic in Portland and purchased and commissioned artwork from her for my home as well. She is a delight to work with and has an eye for where artwork should be placed and has guided us through the purchase of many pieces of artwork for our clinic. We get lots of inquiries from patients regarding Melissa’s artwork and I am always happy to share her contact information.”  Pam B., Portland, OR




Dr. Gruber is the leading researcher of lemon sharks in the world. His scientific lab is in the Bahamas. He and his wife Marie wanted a painting to represent his passion for lemon sharks and their environment.


Marie wrote, "The painting is outstanding, I could feel the love and fun in it!" and Doc added, "She arrived and is hanging in her place of honor, thank you 1,000,000 times!"


Kris had enjoyed my artwork at various shows, but was looking for a specific size, shape, and subject. After I drew the sketch, she decided she wanted an uneven border, so we made that change to the final piece.


She wrote, "I wanted to let you know how much I love the painting!! It looks great on my wall and my family and I enjoy looking at it. I cannot thank you enough for your willingness to make such a cool painting "just for me"!

After client reviewed preliminary sketch, I was directed to create a warmer painting, substituting mauve, gold, and ultramarine blue pigments in place of the turquoise hues in the sketch.