Melissa Koby

Melissa Koby is a Tampa based digital illustrator. She specializes in creating digital illustrations which emphasizes social justice, inclusion, and positivity with women.

Melissa gained recognition through social media for her piece called “Change is Coming”, which went viral and has since been shared by over half a million times.

Since then, Melissa has since done her first solo exhibition, partnered with West Elm, Erin Condren, done illustrative work for Anastasia Beverly hills and has had her work featured in several online and print magazines.

“Even though I primarily illustrate to address our climate and talk about social issues, I still want to represent women beautifully, because I believe every woman is so much more beautiful than any adversity she may face. Historically women have not been treated equally in the art world. Most museums and galleries feature majority male artists and women represent the minority in leadership curation and directorship roles. I love that Mashonda and Artleadher is using their knowledge, expertise, and connections to promote equity and equality for women in the Arts. This platform is exactly what women, especially women of color, need right now.

I wanted to make a subtle nod to Yves Saint Laurent’s love of Morocco while capturing what I dream to see in person. The landscapes and oasis are so warm and vibrant with orange and green hues and I wanted to capture that exact palette. As beautiful as Moroccan architecture is, the idea of freedom is what made me illustrate this fiery haired woman of color, out in the desert, unencumbered by her surroundings.”

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