Style Profile: Jamel Saliba

Jamel is a beautiful young lady that I came across on Instagram and have been following for quite some time now. I had reached out to her via email and we got to know each other a bit that way and she very kindly agreed for me to interview her for my blog. Though we have never met face to face, she seems like a very sweet and talented girl, with similar interests to me.
She is a Fashion Illustrator with a certain bubbly and girly style that shines through in her art. Jamel did not start her career as an illustrator, though. She has tried many different careers before the creation of her brand, Melsy's Illustrations. Jamel has done everything from working as a sales associate at Coach for four years, was a Technical Writer at Raytheon, and then went on to work at CHANEL in cosmetics. She started painting on people's faces before paper!
Jamel now has her successful business with Melsy's Illustrations that was started just last August. Since then, she has been selling her illustrations at Harvard University, and crafts markets/fairs all throughout Boston. She has also landed a fashion illustrating position with Bloomingdale's, created a few illustrations for the CHANEL boutique in Boston, have created illustrations for countless brides, and designed fashion illustration/logos for fashion bloggers throughout the country. Her illustrations have been sold worldwide such as Thailand, London, and Italy to name a few. 
Surprisingly, Jamel did not go to school to study art in any way. Believe it or not, she studied for Communication Studies and a minor in psychology. Art has always been a passion for her's though, so that is why she decided to pursue it. I had the chance to ask her a few questions about her career path and also a bit about her personal style. Read her full interview with me below, and see the gorgeous photos she had submitted to me!



Mikayla:
What are some of your favourite pieces to wear from your closet? 
Jamel:
I absolutely LOVE my pink hunter boots, Chanel Broach, and my BlissTulle Black Ava midi Tulle skirt
Mikayla:
Did you find that your Communications program at Merrimack College is useful in your day-to-day life or in any of the careers you have been in? What kinds of things did it teach you/prepare you for? 
Jamel:
My Communications degree definitely helped! I learned a lot about PR and Advertising that I have implemented into my Etsy shop and Social Media sites. My sales associates position/makeup position at both CHANEL and COACH have definitely played a part in enhancing my communication skills, people/sales skills, and gave me a better understanding of the fashion world. Being a makeup artist at the CHANEL boutique was by far my favorite. The face was my canvas and makeup was my paint :) 

Mikayla:
Since you did not go to school for art, and more or less taught yourself, do you/did you find it at all hard to live up to other fashion illustrations in the market? Did you struggle at all, or has it always been something that comes easy to you?
Jamel:
I think art is a form of self expression and is so unique to each illustrator that you can't really "compete" with other fashion illustrators in the market. Art is art.. it's all about preference and unique style. Of course I have struggled before! My eraser is my best friend haha! Sometimes mistakes make the perfect pieces of art.
Mikayla:
You do have a bit of experience within the cosmetics industry, after working at CHANEL doing makeup - what did you like or dislike about that industry? What kinds of tips would you give to someone who might want to pursue a career in makeup? 
Jamel:
I loved experimenting with different looks.. like a bold lip or a bold eye. I absolutely LOVED rocking the bold red lip. I would wear a different shade every few hours and clients would be like "What are you wearing?! I want it!" It was definitely a way to open up a sale and conversation with a client. It's crazy how a bold lip color can strike up a convo and cause those lips to move!

Mikayla:
Melsy's Illustrations looks like a beautiful, glamorous type of business/job. What are all of your responsibilities while managing your business? Do you work solo, or with anyone else at all? 
Jamel:
I work all hours just by myself! It's definitely a lot of work, but when you do what you love you feel like you aren't working! I actually wakeup looking forward to what I have to do next. 
Mikayla:
Melsy's offers everything from prints, stationary, bridal customs, logos, cell phone cases, mugs, pillows, etc... Is there anything else you are hoping to incorporate one day? Or anything to extend what your brand has to offer?
Jamel:
I'm actually working on bridal invitations now! I would love to work more within the wedding industry and high-end fashion, such as Chanel, Kate Spade, Louis Vuitton, Celine, Prada, etc.

Mikayla:
Do you believe that Melsy's will be your forever career now, or are you still planning some other career endeavors for your future?
Jamel:
Yes, I believe Melsy's is just starting and am hoping to only make it grow from here on out! I'm hoping to one day have a Melsy's boutique in New York City or Paris... ONE DAY!
What Jamel Wore:
Dress // Shopbop
Lipstick Shade // Rougue Coco by CHANEL
Rings // Made by a friend

Photography by Danielle Pikus (Three Chestnuts Photography