Melissa Gay is a critically-acclaimed, genre-spanning artist of the Imaginative Realism style. Starting her career as a scientific illustrator doing ink drawings for botany manuals, she later used those same skills to do black and white line art for roleplaying games, her true passion. Her award-winning work has since appeared on the covers and interiors of many games, books, magazines, academic publications, and even a tarot deck, while her original paintings are in the hands of private collectors around the world. She loves featuring people of diverse genders, colors, sizes and ages in her illustrations. Whether depicting criminal masterminds, comic book heroes, historical fiction, eldritch horror, child mermaids or sentient bugs, she tries to imbue her scenes or subjects with a sense of dreamlike wonder. She has worked with publishers such as Mythopoeic Press, Llewellyn Worldwide, Hay House, Apex Press, Pelgrane Press, Evil Hat, DOJ, Margaret Weiss Productions, Third Eye Games, Blackwyrm Press, Accessible Games, Immersion Press, Lone Wanderer Productions, and more.
Her game credits include illustrations for the multi-award-winning Dresden Files RPG, HERO 6th edition, Fantasy HERO and its supplement Book of Dragons, Trail of Cthulhu supplements such as Dreamhounds of Paris and Soldiers of Pen and Ink, the Firefly RPG supplement Freedom Flyer, the Crimeworld Fate Core supplement, the ENnie Award nominated Mermaid Adventures and Camp Myth, Part-Time Gods and its supplements, Psi-Punk and its supplements, the Dungeon World supplement Plague of Storms, The Algernon Files NPC superheroes sourcebooks by Blackwyrm Press, The Elves of Uteria and its supplements, and Infestation: A Game of Bugs and Heroes. Her speculative fiction book covers include Sara M. Harveyâ€™s Penemue trilogy (Apex Press), and HebrewPunk (Apex Press) and Jesus and the Eightfold Path (Immersion Press edition) for World Fantasy Award winning author Lavie Tidhar. Recently she has branched into childrenâ€™s illustration with Cathy Coleyâ€™s Felix the Comet.