do you use eco-friendly shipping?
Yes! all my shipping is plastic free - I use recycled cardboard and paper tape when shipping orders from my website. everything is wrapped with care and i use recycled tissue paper for delicate items. I also donate a portion of sales to trees that count to help offset the carbon emissions caused by sending my products throughout NZ and the world.
Do you sell Wholesale?
Yes! I welcome wholesale enquiries, please email me at melissa (at) melissaboardman.com or get in touch through the ‘contact’ page on this site. I have a dedicated wholesale ordering page which is password protected, to gain access please email me with a little bit of information about your shop.
what exactly do you do?
I illustrate, design and produce my own range of products, these include paper goods such as greeting cards, calendars, hand stitched notebooks and more. I also make a small range of illustrated hand built ceramics that I make, illustrate and fire myself. I sell my goods through my website, and a selection of shops in NZ, also at local markets and pop-ups.
What medium do you use?
all my illustrations are painted with gouache, it’s my absolute favourite medium. gouache is an opaque watercolour that can be used just like watercolours with added water, or it can be used to create large flat opaque areas of colour.
do you do commissions? if so how much would it cost?
yes I do commissions! costs vary because there are so many variable factors, if you would like a quote please get in touch with a few details about what you are looking for. I specialist in native NZ bird illustrations so if it’s bird related I will definitely consider it!
do you sell originals?
yes! I have a range of originals available - if you like a print but would prefer the original please get in touch!
can you tell me more about your process?
I’m always happy to talk about my process, and to answer questions on anything from finding inspiration, being a full time artist, even the technical aspects of illustration. If you’d like to listen to me talk about how I work, check out this interview I did for Radio New Zealand here.
where do you get your reference photos from?
I take them all myself! I love photographing birds, it gives me a good excuse to get immersed in nature, and I feel like I can better represent birds in my illustrations when I know their personalities and behavioural characteristics. I am often at my local sanctuary Zealandia snapping photos of all the beautiful native birds and I try to travel to other birding hot spots in NZ to see a variety of birds when I can.
Can i use your photos for my own art?
this is always a tricky question for me. I take my own photographs to use in my illustrations, I want the reference I use to be unique so the same bird isn’t seen in another artists work. I have such a passion for our native birds that I have a photography account on instagram where I share some of the photographs I have taken, i don’t get any gain from this all, I simply share my photos because I love talking about our native birds and sharing facts about them too. This leads to many people asking to use my photographs for themselves. I respectfully ask that my photographs aren’t used without my express permission.
a lot of effort, time, patience and sometimes money goes into bird photography, but it is very rewarding, and I encourage others to get out and take their own photos, it’s so much more meaningful knowing you have spent time with the bird you are illustrating or drawing.