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Meet Brett Blumenthal

Meet Brett Blumenthal

Brett Blumenthal’s art continues to inspire us. Her baby animals have the sort of soulful air that only an artist and an animal lover can create. Brett is both those things. We talked with her recently about how her art career is evolving.

Oopsy Daisy: What inspired you to focus on animal portraits?
Brett Blumenthal: When I was pregnant with my son [Alexander, who is now 4], I wanted to create art for his nursery. I did a series of safari animals with our cat, DaVinci, intertwined into them. I did a series of a family of three, plus our cat. People who would look at Alexander's nursery art said "oh my goodness I had no idea you could do this. You should sell it." When I did start selling my art, the family thing wasn't resonating as much as I hoped, so I started exploring what I thought was interesting.

OD: Have you always had a passion for animals?
BB: Yes. One of the reasons I dedicate ten percent of my own profits to animal welfare and wildlife conservation is that they don't have a voice and we do.

OD: Do you have formal art training?
BB: My dad was an artist and most of my training came from him. I took lots of art classes through grade and high school and never thought of it as a career, but I did become an architect. Lots of design classes and art are part of that curriculum.

OD: What is next for you?
BB: I will always continue to focus on animals because that is a passion of mine. I did a set of dinosaurs for a customer, and dad cancelled the order because the family switched their nursery theme to trucks. I asked if I could do some trucks for him instead and he agreed. At the same time, my son is getting into trucks (he’s not so much into animals anymore). I have been exploring the path of opening a new genre for boys. I am branching out and finding it challenging and interesting.

OD: What would you tell kids who are interested in a career in art?
BB:I would tell a kid to never be scared of being out there. I'm a pretty literal artist, which is why I'm a realist instead of an abstract artist. You might have a bit of fear of going out of the ordinary and wondering if it's going to be accepted. Don't let fear squash your creativity, and do something every day. Find a way to have an artistic outlet every day.
I find that if I look at what I did for Alexander's nursery compared to what I'm doing now, you really can't compare the two. If you don't keep working at it you won't get better.

Brett Blumenthal lives in Charlotte, NC with her husband, cat, and son.

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