Artist of the Month: Melissa Farias as reported by Paige Darling

To celebrate both art and culture LION has chosen Mexican American artist Melissa Farias ‘21 to recognize Hispanic Heritage Month, which spans Sept. 15 to Oct. 15. Farias does photography, poetry and filmmaking through LTTV.

Farias’ current focus is LTTV and filmmaking, she said. A project she is developing as of Sept. 16, 2019, is a 1980's themed Coke commercial with a modern twist.

“Melissa has an artistic eye; she can see mundane things or places and find interesting ways to shoot them,” LTTV teacher William Allan said. “She also has a very real female perspective to her art, which translates into stories she tells visually with her sense of direction and subtle subtext.”

Photos found in her book "Melissa"

Her artistry spans wider than just film making. In 2017, she published her self titled literary piece, “Melissa”, as a compilation of poetry and photography, she said. It was created for her seventh grade teacher’s Genius Hour project, where students took an hour every Friday for a year to work towards a goal of their choosing.

She uses her book to discuss a variety of topics ranging from middle school crushes and flowers to self harm, she said. Farias uses art to communicate ideas she finds difficult to express and to also exhibit her extroverted personality. In her everyday life she tries to make others laugh and transfer her positivity.

Poem and Photo found in "Melissa"

“I think [art is] the most important aspect of humanity,” Farias said. “Our culture is most impacted by art. There’s just something special about it. I also think it’s necessary and a valuable aspect for people to have.”

In her poetry she tries to evoke deep emotions whether that be sadness or joy, she said. She also strives to bring a sense of wonder and allow readers to come up with various meanings to her poetry. Between all of her mediums she is most passionate about poetry.

“There’s something different that you can convey with words; to some degree photography is something you can just look at,” Farias said. “With poetry you can analyze it and there’s something you can communicate that you can’t through visuals.”

Sister of Melissa Farias

Her identity is shown in her photography with loud, popping images and different colors and hues, Farias said. Facial expressions and people she finds interesting are her muses and inspiration.

“I like capturing the expression on peoples faces,” Farias said. “There’s beauty in what their emoting.”

Farias enjoys art because it is rewarding and fun. After spending two years on her book, she was thrilled to get it in the mail, she said. Fifteen people have brought her independently published book that can be purchased on www.blurb.com.

“It just feels so good working hard on something and then seeing it,” Farias said. “Not only you do you get to enjoy what you’re proud of, but other people do to.”

Poem from the book "Melissa"

Though she has not been working as much on poetry and photography, she continues to communicate her artistic visions through LTTV.

After two years of shadowing and working hard in LTTV she is able to take on a leadership role, Allan said. She now works as director and producer while doing cinematography and editing work as well.

“LTTV is all about making any video you’ve ever wanted to make whether that be music videos, commercials, documentaries or short films,” Farais said. “It can be so cool and freeing; there is a lot of creative freedom here.”

Model Alejandra Rodriguez
Created By
Nina Shearrill


Melissa Farias