By Sarita Crandall, Contributing Writer
Hailey Mealey, a junior biology major, has decided to put her artistic talents to work by opening up an Etsy shop to sell her creative watercolor paintings. Since Mealey is paying for her own education and is going to school full time, she needed an extra boost in her financial life and thought using her own abilities would do the trick.
“I was really nervous when I first opened up my Etsy shop because there wasn’t a lot on it,” Mealey said, “but I got a notification on my phone, it makes a little cha-ching, and so when I got that I was so excited someone had bought this portrait I did!”
Mealey’s biggest seller, compared to her printable downloads, are the colorful portraits that she replicates using a photo of your choice. The customer has to provide the photo either via email or through the mail if the customer lives far away they can physically give the photo to Mealey if they live close by.
Bill Charles was a recent local customer that was genuinely pleased with the portrait he paid for. The photo Charles gave Mealey was a photo of a family trip to Canada. “It’s a very memorable time so to have that personalized portrait really means a lot to me and adds to the significance of that trip,” said Charles, “It really has it’s own memory when looking at it.”
Not only has Mealey been working on her artwork to satisfy her customers, but she is working hard in school. One of her professors, Jean Doty, is especially pleased with Mealey in the classroom.
“I’ve known Hailey since the beginning of the fall semester. She took my Cell Biology class in the fall, and she’s currently taking my Genetics course,” Doty said, “Hailey is very enthusiastic and engaged in my classes. And she has excellent lab skills!”
Most people are confused when they hear that Mealey is an artist but also is highly interested in science, especially biology. “I have a lot of diverse interests,” Mealey said, “I think that’s what is good about both artist and scientist is that they’re more diverse than people give them credit to be.” Mealey said.
Doty agrees with Mealey, “Science requires creativity, too, though, so it makes sense that she’s interested in both art and science.”
This past break Mealey went to MDI to spend the entire week looking through microscopes at worms and learning about organisms through multiple bio labs. While she was there she learned a lot about the other students and professors. One professor was in a cover band for Metallica!
“Sometimes I feel like there are stereotypes of both artist and biologist and I think people don’t realize how common it is for the two to mix,” Mealey said, “Dr. Sherrod is my chemistry teacher and he does theater and singing.”
For further information about Mealey and her artwork, visit Etsy.com, search “Hailey Jane Creations” and view her unique work.