"Rocks and Raindrops"
Melissa Jean, "Rocks and Raindrops," 24x24 acrylic on canvas.
Born: 1975, Winnipeg
Price Range: $500 - $5000
Jennifer Tasker is the owner of Woodlands Gallery, a Winnipeg fixture since 1984. She has seen a recent affection among clients for lots of colour, particularly red, and notes that people are “gravitating towards a blend between realism and abstract. Clients like to see something recognizable in a painting rather than a complete abstract, but far enough away from photo-realism that they can insert their own vision into the piece.”
When Tasker first met Melissa Jean in 2010 Jean was seeking gallery representation for the first time outside her community. Painting professionally for only a couple of years, she is a fast-emerging artist Tasker is quick to endorse. “Her prices are reasonable but climbing. In her first year she sold over 25 paintings plus several commissions. She was recently a feature artist in the gallery.” Jean takes inspiration from her Lake of the Woods surroundings and every painting is an adventure. As she said in a recent interview, a favourite experience on a summer day “...is to sit on a dock/island/beach and watch the reflections in the water, and if it rains, watch the raindrops ... it’s as mesmerizing as watching the flames of a bonfire, coming together and pulling apart.”
Tasker’s advice to collectors: “Don’t over think it. Don’t stress over starting with a perfect piece to feature above the sofa. Be open to possibilities. Start with the first piece that tugs on your heartstrings… small or large, start with the piece you can’t stop thinking about.”