Krystii Melaine is on an artistic journey to discover and portray the people who shaped the American West. She brings a classically trained artist’s eye, an Australian perspective, a thirst for knowledge, and contemporary ideas to her paintings.
Krystii knew without a doubt that she would be an artist by age four, won her first art competition at seven, and was selling paintings by age fourteen. Following University studies in painting and drawing, Krystii enjoyed a successful career as a fashion designer in Australia, specializing in bridal and evening gowns.
But when her lifelong passion for painting became too strong to ignore, she undertook five years of atelier study in traditional tonal realism, focusing on portraiture. Achieving success as a portrait and wildlife artist in Australia, Krystii then found inspiration in the Native Americans, cowboys and wildlife of the American West. In 2010 she and her husband moved from Australia to Spokane, Washington, to be closer to her favorite Western subjects. Working in a realistic, painterly style in oils, Krystii portrays the people and animals who shaped the West in the past and who continue its traditions today. Her research begins with making and beading replica Native American clothing and equipment, then working with Native American models on location to ensure authenticity. Through intimate portraits and wider narratives, she tells individual stories in quietly poetic ways.
Krystii’s paintings regularly feature in major museum exhibitions, and she has 26 paintings in museum collections. Numerous notable awards confirm the quality of her paintings.