Art medium(s): Paper, pencil and digital but I also enjoy acrylic and canvas!
How do you describe your art? I’d describe my art style as cute, colorful and playful. I’m taking it in a couple different directions at the moment: one is greeting card art and the other is City of Neenah art! For my greeting cards I’ve been having fun making cards with animals (manatees, dolphins, etc.) and adding birthday hats or Santa hats. It makes me happy. My other focus is drawing Neenah Storefronts and landmarks for the Sesquicentennial this year. I absolutely adore Neenah (it’s my hometown) and it’s been a really fun project!
Were you always interested in following a creative path? Yep, I’ve always been creative! My parents definitely encouraged it growing up. My siblings and I used to draw toad and frog comic strips that are hilarious to look back on. I took as many art classes as I could in school but I’d consider myself mostly self-taught. I really dove into it six years ago with acrylic painting (I have fun with the thick-impasto-type painting!) and then started digital artwork and Kandid Doodle in 2022.
What does your “day-in-the-life” as an artist look like? My day starts with getting food for my adorable meow-y cat Nairobi, a warm beverage for me, and starting work in my living room office by my large picture window. I’ll turn on some music and usually start with filling my Etsy orders and putting them in the mail. Then I’ll move on to my current projects. Depending on the stage I’m at I’ll be doing a pencil sketch, tracing a sketch into my tablet, adding colors and details in my tablet, or printing out cards, prints or stickers.
Where do you get your creative inspiration? A lot of it is from love! My love for the adorable animals of the world. Drawing them in a way that conveys love (like cuddling with each other!). My love of my friends and family inspires me to make cards with their favorite animals or something I know they’ll get a kick out of. Love of my hometown and specific places that are special to me. Love of flowers and nature!
Why do you love what you do? It’s the most authentic expression of me that I’ve gotten to do as a job! I love celebrating people, so to send out a birthday card I made and know it’s going to make someone feel special is the best feeling ever. And I love the fellow creative people I’m meeting along the way.
Have you faced any challenges as an artist? A big one was getting over my fear of putting myself out there—that feeling of “Is anyone even going to like it?” and just going for it; signing up for markets, putting my art online and starting my Etsy.
One thing most people don’t know about being an artist: Maybe that most of us are creative in a lot of other ways than our main art medium… I think we also love playing music, and doing other crafts like knitting or pottery or painting. And we usually have many of these things going on at the same time.
Early bird or night owl? I’m naturally a night owl. I love the peaceful energy of being awake when the city is sleeping.
Dog or cat person? I love them both but I am definitely a cat person! I have the cutest black cat who has been my best friend for the past 16 years and I live for the purrs, head butts and cuddles!
Is the glass half full or half empty? It’s half full.
What makes you happiest: Being with my incredible family and delightful friends! Snuggling Nairobi. Listening to music, dancing and singing! Sunsets. Laughing so hard that I can’t look at the other person or I’ll start up again and hearing that my art makes people happy.
Find Brienna on Instagram @KandidDoodle and on Etsy at Etsy.com/shop/KandidDoodle. You can also find her at the Neenah Farmers Market Saturdays through October 14.