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Meet Brenna Butler of B. Butler Studio in Santa Monica

Today we’d like to introduce you to Brenna Butler.

Brenna, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
Art burns in my blood; calling upon me since I was little to express my learnings, push boundaries, and act as my voice when words shied away from me. Art is simply something I have to do. I turned simple book report projects into elaborate art projects, used my skin as canvas when paper was not present, and doodled my way through class notes. I found my focus in high school, choosing to dedicate all four years to it. Self-taught, these classes provided formal learnings to natural tendencies. Selling my first piece at 15, and I found myself excelling in Advanced Placement classes by my third year.

After high school, I spent the next four years studying Graphic Design and Art at Chapman University in Orange, CA. I fell in love with fine line, white space, bold graphics, and feminine forms. Using my understanding of both Fine Art and Design, I challenged my traditional techniques to incorporate minimal design elements and developed a new voice.

My early twenties were full of self-exploration in femininity, sexuality, and the physical form. Burdened by pieces of myself that were lost, hurt, or buried art was an empowering outlet to reclaim control, purge what no longer serves, and bloom into something new. During this time, I also started working as a designer in the beauty industry and currently continue to balance the roles of Designer and Artist.

Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
Frankly, no. Choosing your passion is a bold choice and one that takes dedication, trust, and persistence. I trust in my choice to strive for nothing less and choose to step outside my comfort zone to grow. It has proven challenging at times to balance a full-time design career, creating my own work, having a social life, and taking care of myself; but it is all worth it to know that I am accumulating knowledge, growing, and truly achieving everyday. There are moments of feeling lost and unsure of the path, but I continue to take the jump to put myself out there, paint after work, and set smaller goals. It can be hard to look at how much you have actually accomplished when focused on future aspirations; but as I sit back and consider this question, I found my struggles have surrounded by some of the most loving, creative, and thoughtful people. I am truly grateful for the creativity that continues to flow and the love that fills my cup when it is empty.

Please tell us more about your art.
During the day, I am a professional full-time Graphic Designer in the beauty industry with a focus in branding. I take on freelance projects when I can.

At night and on the weekends, I am a Fine Artist with a small studio, b. butler studio, which sells fine art prints, paintings, and digital illustrations online, through Instagram, and at the Mar Vista Artwalk. My work incorporates nude women, social commentary, and sexuality. I love to switch mediums depending on what speaks to me for a specific piece. One week I will be drawing on paper, next painting on canvas, then sewing on un-stretched canvas, then painting on wood, and then making digital illustrations. It’s fun to learn how to use new mediums and finding the right channel to execute the concept/idea.

I share my process on my Instagram and have truly been surprised and honored at pieces being purchased in early stages if the creation process.

What moment in your career do you look back most fondly on?
As a Designer, my proudest moment was the day my team launched an entire professional haircare brand in 600 stores across the U.S. with over 100 skus in less than eight months. I designed the branding, packaging, marketing materials, photoshoots, and worked with the web and app developers. I even flew to Poland and back for press check in 72 hours. I am still in awe of what our tiny team of three accomplished and continue to achieve everyday.

As an Artist, I am extremely proud to have a commissioned large personal pieces and continue to have a list of requested works. I am also proud to have generated a complete body of work and participate the Mar Vista Artwalk.

Each day I achieve in design or art reminds me of how proud I am to do this for a living.

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
All original works by Brenna Butler

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