My latest article is in INDY Week. “Teenage Artist Eli Melet’s Mixed-Media Work with Eggshells Earns Him a Spot in the Orange County Artists Guild” profiles the youngest artist to ever be admitted in North Carolina’s Orange County Artists Guild. It appears in this week’s print edition on p.21 as “Fresh Cracked Art.”
As is the process with every article, you can’t fit everything within the word limit. Thus, why I have the Behind the Pen section here on Write Naked! Melet, the artist, was only 13 when he was admitted to the guild in February 2017. However, he sold his first piece two years before that!
The creative talent seems to skip a generation in his family. While Melet prefers painting landscapes (and employing eggshells–see the article), his grandfather drew, created collages, portraits, and worked with pen and ink. His grandmother had a different creative calling: music.
When I asked Melet to name his favorite museum, I received a surprising answer. “I really don’t like to go to museums,” he said. With artwork just a click or tap away on the nearest digital device, he finds artwork online to study and inspire him.
As the youngest member in the guild, Melet is not just holding court. According to ceramic artist and guild president Judith Ernst, Melet is “enthusiastic” about drones and helped film aerial footage that the guild will use in their marketing efforts.
Writing this piece was a pleasure because it combined many threads in my life. Of course, creativity. Yes, local art. The most important thread: Moving toward your dreams regardless of your age.
Melet is part of the annual Orange County Artists Guild Open Studio Tour. Visit his home studio in Chapel Hill, NC 11/11-12 to meet him and experience his art. Free.