Mel Mckinley is a current MFA candidate in the Applied Craft + Design Program, a joint program between Oregon College of Art and Craft and Pacific Northwest College of Art, and is living and working in Portland, OR. Her work focuses on material exploration and research in ceramics, and its applications in the fields of both everyday domestic objects and product design. In hoping to work towards a practice that brings design and human interest together over democratic objects. She received a BFA from Eastern Kentucky University in both ceramics and jewelry based metal-smithing in 2016. Her work has been shown in the Furthermore Gallery in Portland, Or, the Giles Gallery in Richmond, KY, and the Arts Place Gallery in Lexington, KY. Mel has had extensive arts based experience working as a studio technician at various universities, and is currently the studio manager for the ceramics studio at the Applied Craft + Design studios, as well as a work-study for Oregon College of Art and Crafts ceramics department. Her current work can be seen in the Portland area.