Happy Thursday, friends! I feel like each time we make it to *almost* the weekend is pretty much a miracle. Today, I am SO excited to share something I’ve been working on putting together with a few of my dear industry friends! If you’ve been following along for the last couple of weeks, you may know that I’ve been struggling a little bit with deciding what content I want to share here on the blog… on Instagram… online in general.
I created a little BINGO board for myself and for other creatives to use to take care of themselves and their biz a few weeks back, and as one of the items, I wanted to interview a fellow creative to share here on the blog! I’m so excited to be able to introduce you to TWO of my amazing industry friends over the next two weeks!
Today, you get to meet Brittany of By Brittany Branson!
She is an amazingly talented artist and live wedding painter who I was lucky enough to meet through a mutual friend (Hi Vanessa!!!) when I first moved to DC. Since we met, I’ve loved watching Brittany’s business grow, evolve, and serve so many amazing people. We have an exciting branding portrait project on the books for future, and I’m so excited that, by the time we’re able to safely photograph it and I get to share it with you, you’ll know so much more about her, her heart & her craft!
She is so incredibly talented, so genuine, and so incredibly kind. She was sweet enough to agree to meet with me just a few weeks ago to chat through her business, what she does, and a little bit about what she’s doing through this season. What she has to say is a lot more valuable than anything I could write here (Seriously… she’s AMAZING!!!), so we’ll get right to it today, but first… if you want to connect with Brittany online, you can find her website, Instagram, and Facebook through the previous links!
Introduction & Getting to know Brittany
I can’t wait for you to meet my amazing friend Brittany, her business, and her sweet pup Bolt! She is a destination live wedding painter in the DMV, but she serves couples all over the country. Last year, she painted in 10 different states! She got into live wedding painting after having one at her own wedding to her sweet pilot hubby. It’s one of her most precious pieces, and she wanted to see if she could provide heirlooms to other couples while allowing for flexibility in her and her husband’s lives.
Can you talk a little about what live wedding painting is and what the process looks like?
Seeing Brittany in action is SO cool! I was lucky enough to work with her on a wedding a few months back. She brings her canvas, paints & easel to the wedding and sets up to get to work! After touching base with her clients before the day, she has a clear idea of what her clients are envisioning. Her most commen mometns are first dances, ceremonies, or “just the two of us” moments. Live wedding painting is a great entertainment source for guests during your reception and is such a super meaningful tangible heirloom from your wedding day.
I know you love to travel! What does that look like & do you have any dream destinations?!
Whether her weddings are local or destination, her setup is pretty much the same! All she needs is her portable easel, paints and a canvas! Depending on the destination, she may bring a canvas with her or pick one up at a local art store. She’ll often take the painting home with her to put on the finishing touches, but Brittany is also able to leave the canvas with her couple if that is possible.
When it comes to dream wedding destinations, she’s definitely interested in Hawaii, California, Utah & Washington state. Any couples out west need a live wedding painter & wedding photographer?! She also loves southern states… bonus points for those gorgeous southern states with plenty of Spanish moss.
What does it look like to plan live wedding painting? How does the process work?
By the time most couples are hiring a live wedding painter, most have an idea of what they want! BUT, to start the conversation, Brittany will often ask which portion of the day they are interested in having painted (ceremony or reception!). It usually comes down to what is important to them as a couple! Some couples opt to have just the two of them painted or opt to have family members that were in attendance painted in. Brittany also specializes in painting in the likeness of loved ones who have passed, for a visual representation of their presence on a couple’s wedding day. Most people have an idea of what they want and a vision of what they want hanging in their home!
You can give live wedding painting as a gift!
I just LOVE this idea! About 50-60% of her bookings each year are gifts from parents, wedding party members, or friends and family of the couple. She knows they’re looking for something super meaningful to give a couple on their wedding day.
What do you love most about what you do?
The big question!!! She gets to book and serve couples that are super excited about what she does! It tends to be a part of their day that they are incredibly excited about if they are familiar with live wedding painting. Brittany also continues to educate those that may not know about live wedding painting as an option, sharing what she does and why it is valuable and worth investing in. This process tends to make the experience between her and her couples that much more meaningful because they are already SO excited about what she does.
Are there any live painting misconceptions or things you would want people to know?
Live wedding painters have their own style and personality. They’ll never be able to replicate anyone else. Though she doesn’t run into it often, Brittany really wants to remind couples hiring live wedding painters that each artist’s style is such an individualized and unique thing. She’ll never be able to replicate another person’s style, especially within the confines of creating a live painting in such a short amount of time! She wants to remind couples to review her portfolio before hiring because it is SO important to her that you are in LOVE with your painting. Just because you find a live painter, don’t just go with them because they are the only one available.
How are you pivoting the way you are offering live wedding painting during this COVID era?
Brittany is super excited to begin offering virtual live wedding painting experiences. She had her first one last Saturday! She wants to be able to give couples an adapted and meaningful experience. She tunes into the couple’s virtual feed of their wedding day to create a gorgeous painting based on what she sees! After the wedding, she’ll be able to provide a timelapse video of the live painting from her end. Click here to see the virtual timelapse from her first virtual experience! (It is SO cool to see Brittany in action!)
What else do you do in addition to live wedding painting?!
Live wedding painting may be her bread and butter, but she also does custom crests. This is something she’s really leaning into during this period of social distancing. In addition, she also does custom commissions. She takes inspiration from images from a couple’s day and combines them into a new work of art, instead of directly copying from an image. She sees a lot of commissions for anniversaries or for special family pieces/gifts.
How do you give back through your business?!
Brittany donates a portion of her live paintings and commissions to the organization where they adopted their sweet pup, Bolt, from! (Click here to learn more about DC Lucky Dog!) She often will put aside a portion from every booking for a big donation on Giving Tuesday or will donate to organizations during hurricane season when shelters are working on emergency rescues. Recently, she has been looking into a way to hyper-organize her efforts to give back. She would love to set up a nonprofit wing where her business is the primary funder to create an emergency legal fund for families or rescue organizations where individuals need to hire legal assistance to save their animals. She hopes her business can be the driving factor for making this organization a reality.
Is there anything else you wanted to add?!
I loved this response from Brittany… she wants all couples to continue to plan and to book and to dream about your day. Don’t feel like you have to stop. It is your dreaming and planning and booking that will get the events industry through these scary times. 2021 friends… let’s all chat!
Final fun questions & where to find Brittany!
I’m not going to summarize all of her amazing points, so you’ll just have to watch to find out! We’re chatting all about her favorite art supplies, new paints, where she shops for supplies, her favorite color to paint with, what she’s doing to relax (I love what she has to say here about slowing down and breathing during this season), and where you can find her online! Find the links below to connect with Brittany on:
A huge THANK YOU to Brittany for sitting down with me and for being such a bright spot in my day! I hope you enjoyed this, learned something new, and will give her a follow if her work is new to you!
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