Melissa Garden is a freelance illustrator based in Oakland, California, who specializes in illustrated recipes, food and beverage illustration, and product packaging.

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My interest in the world of food and beverage illustration has been a lifelong love affair. Raised on a farm and vineyard in the Napa Valley where food and wine is not just a necessity but a lifestyle I had the privilege of getting to know passionate growers, makers, vintners and chefs. I learned how to distill these spirited images and stories into engaging packaging, logos, and illustrated branding. I knew that my intimate knowledge of the inside of the business, paired with my own passion for the food world would enable me to successfully marry my loves and make successful work for my clients. 


  • Eating Well Magazine
  • Baskin Robbins
  • FrogsLeap Winery
  • Blue Apron


What fruit or vegetable do you most love to illustrate?
I love to illustrate otherworldly tropical fruits with their bizarre and varied colors, forms and flowers. Most are so strange and unrecognizable that I love the distinct challenge of making these amorphous blobs look like something delectable and delicious.  

What is your comfort food?
Growing up in Northern California my comfort food has to be simple street tacos. Tortillas put directly on the flame, slow cooked meat, fresh cilantro from the garden and a little squeeze of lime is all it takes for me to feel at home. 

What is your favorite beverage?
My favorite beverage has to be the cocktails my friends and neighbors make from the fruit in our yards every Friday night. We gather and share homegrown passionfruit, Meyer lemons, loquats, kumquats, oranges and blackberries from the block in Oakland mixed lovingly into bright fresh drinks by people I love.  

Like what you see by MELISSA GARDEN?