Artist Assistant

Melissa Hernandez
Oct 16, 2013 11:24PM

I have a great job that has been 20 years in the making.  

As an 18 year-old high school student in 1993 attending a campus in downtown San Antonio, TX and working with many Texas musical acts, I found whimsical fun that expressed my outgoing personality on the walls around the art area we affectionately call Southtown.  The creator was Robert Tatum.  A street artist by way of Los Angeles found home and family here in San Antonio.  Dubbed as "honorary" Hispanic, Robert Tatum fit in with our culture. We are a city that is not too politically correct and pretty chilled.  We ran in the same music circles, many bands requesting him to do their logos or cover art.  He has been the official artist of commemorative posters for Jazz'SAlive (20th/25th/30th year).  He has also designed "the look" for many San Antonio/Austin/Houston businesses.  It is his mural work that has always blown me away and transcends me to my "happy place".  Last year I caught him at his booth for our city's monthly art fest "First Friday" in Southtown.  I bought some 8 x 10 prints of his paintings and tee shirts that had that tongue and cheek humor and we started discussing social media and so over the year I worked off and on with him and started in August of this year on a part-time bases as his assistant to him and his wife and creative partner Carol Martelle.  I love the art Robert puts on www.tatumoriginals.com and admire the splendor he and his wife put on businesses as www.tatummartelle.com.

It is the best work atmosphere and I am in my zen spot when I work with them.  Now to shine the light and invite you all out in the world through the internet window, to come take a peek into a world as charming as Wonka's. 

Melissa Hernandez
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Jenna Gribbon, Luncheon on the grass, a recurring dream, 2020. Jenna Gribbon, April studio, parting glance, 2021. Jenna Gribbon, Silver Tongue, 2019