Melissa works to commission on many different scale projects from small interior pieces such as lighting to large scale gates and railings. The commissioning process allows for the client to participate in the development of the design, usually with specific ideas or requirements.
A client might want a response to a location or space; they may need to create a barrier or enhance a space. These critical aspects may influence the design and finish of a commission and there may be building regulations that have to be adhered to.
Time is spent researching and developing ideas with a client and communicating these ideas through sketches and/or maquettes. A timescale is worked out that will suit both parties. Usually a written contract is developed outlining the commission process, timescale, costs, installation and maintenance requirements along with a description of the piece being made.
'Driftway Imprint' Forged steel and bronze sculpture for Oxford City Council 2012 Located on Horspath Driftway
'Driftway Imprint' Forged steel and bronze sculpture for Oxford City Council 2012 Located on Horspath Driftway. Side view
Commissioning a bespoke piece of ironwork is fun and should be rewarding for both parties. Clients are encouraged to visit Melissa's workshop during the making of a commission. Forged ironwork has a longevity that crosses generations and is an investment for more than a lifetime. Please contact melissa if you would like to discuss a commission.
Meryl and Andrew Ainslie came to Melissa having seen and liked her forged 17th Century series of sculptures in exhibitions.
Melissa was asked to design gates and fixed panels to create a link between the new build and existing old barn.
The galvanised finish is the final finish, an agricultural look links with the zinc roof, gutters and doors on the new build. Door handles were also forged and finished in zinc to link to the gates.
Chippenham Town Bridge Railings
2001 Chippenham Town Bridge Competition. Melissa was the winner of an international competition to design new railings for the main town bridge over the River Avon. The design depicts arches with water beneath and did incorporate a balcony on each side of the bridge for people to step out over the water away from the activity moving behind them. The balconies were not included in the finished design. Fabricated by DHF Engineering. Also included stainless steel panels with coloured back lighting on each pier at the ends of the bridge.
1998 - 2000 Mountwise Greenlink Community Environmental Art Project, Plymouth
Working with local residents to design and make new gates, railings and panels around a community events space. Funded by City of Plymouth, The Po Shing Woo Charitable Foundation, European Regional Development Fund and The Arts Council.
Westwood St Thomas' School - Sculpture Park Project. Sept. 2000 - July 2002
While employed as Artist Blacksmith in Residence at the school working with ‘A’ Level, ‘GCSE’, GNVQ Foundation, Intermediate and Advanced students, staff and members of the local community producing large and small scale sculptures for the school grounds. Based in an old bike shed that has been converted into a studio, students worked with Melissa for one or two days a week on the forge to create their works. The project was devised by Jayne Stillman, Head of Art and Design, and was funded by Southern Arts, The Golsoncott Foundation, Barclays New Futures, Salisbury District Council SWAG Fund, Westwood St Thomas’ School and private sponsors.
Wall-mounted entrance piece for Dolby Laboratories European Head Quarters, Wootton Bassett, Wiltshire. The design is based on the original circuit board design for Noise Reduction and the making process which uses a wave solder machine (4.5m x 4.5m) .