Originally from Manila, Philippines, Melissa moved to New York in 1989 to attend the School of Visual Arts, pursuing her passion for the creative arts. She earned a One Show Award-College Competition and graduated in 1992 with a Fine Arts Degree in Media and Advertising.
Following graduation, Melissa has partnered with many of New York’s most influential design and publishing firms. As Associate Production Manager and Designer for Interview Magazine, she was involved in all aspects of production management as well as graphic design for leading art galleries, hospitality and retail accounts.
In the role of Art Director at Baron & Baron, Melissa collaborated on a range of luxury and fashion assignments including Giorgio Armani fragrances, Calvin Klein Home and fragrances, Francois Nars Cosmetics, and BCBG Max Azria. Branding projects included the full complement of Ian Schrager’s Morgans Hotel Group—including Paramount, Royalton, Morgans and Hudson hotels in New York, Delano in Miami, Mondrian in LA, St Martins Lane and Sanderson in London, and Clift in San Francisco. Publishing projects included design of the 1997 Pirelli Calendar—images by Richard Avedon, the Dolce & Gabbana 10th Anniversary retrospective book, Michel Comte’s People and Places with No Name book and collaborations with Ismail Merchant Productions.
Melissa’s on-going creative relationship with Lipman included creative problem solving for global luxury and lifestyle brands Ermenegildo Zegna, ZZegna, Erno Laszlo Cosmetics, Bacara Resort and Spa, Jennifer Anniston fragrance, Lord & Taylor, Godiva Chocolates, DVF Diane von Furstenberg, Smart Water, Gansevoort Hotel, the Whitney Museum and IAC (Interactive Corp).
The quality of her relationship with Ian Schrager’s hotel brands led her to be tapped in succession first as internal Art Director of Morgans Hotel Group followed by becoming Creative Director of Advertising and Design for Ian Schrager Hotels working on all aspects of Morgans, Royalton, Delano, Mondrian, Hudson, St Martins Lane, Sanderson, Clift and his new high-profile developments including 50 Gramercy Park North, 40 Bond, the reinvention of The Gramercy Park Hotel, and the most recent project Public Hotel.
Her desire to pursue accessible global brands led Melissa to Laird as Creative Director on GAP, Gap Kids, and GAP Baby touching all facets of creative leadership including advertising, moving image, digital and brand strategy. Additionally, she partnered with AR New York as Creative Director for Banana Republic, and the LVMH global brand DFS for the rebranding and launch of Duty Free Shops. She has also led projects as Creative Director for Bloomingdale’s, Ogilvy & Mather on AVON, Versace, and most recently CIRCA Jewelry and Zeckendorf Development for their properties 18 Gramercy Park and 50 United Nations Plaza.
School of Visual Arts, NYC (9/89 to 5/92)
B.F.A. Media Arts and Advertising, Honors Graduate
Proficient in most current versions of Adobe programs such as: In Design, Photoshop, Illustrator; Microsoft Word and Excel, Power Point; highly knowledgeable in photo/print production, post-production, quality control and press-checks. Well-travelled and internationally experienced.