Feature Friday #017 — Brianna Eng

Feature Friday #017 is here! Checkout Brianna's IGWebsite, and full Cotton Bureau collection here. Read on to hear about all things art, bad roommates, and a guide to surviving Walmart after-hours. 

Hiyah! I'm so excited to catch up with you. How's the art world? Are you still doing exhibitions? If not, what are you spending your time on as of late?

I haven't worked toward any exhibitions in the past few years but have been making lots of things in the background! I've been spending a lot of time improving my sewing skills and have been making some collages and design zines as my main creative outlets. Lately I've been working as a product designer and an art teacher. I love teaching in a studio space, working with different age ranges in different mediums. It's given me a lot of creative energy that helps me create more on my own time.

I saw the collages! I went creeping on your IG and was so intrigued, I kept going back to the same ones and noticed something new each time. They're incredibly fun to look it, I bet creating them is just as entertaining. 

As someone who took every art class offered in high school I give you serious props. Maybe I just got lucky but I think art teachers are the kind of people who can inspire new ideas and have the patience to trust the process. That takes some real charisma in my opinion. Teaching art is an art. Do you have a favorite medium to work with? Do your students tend to gravitate towards anything specific? 

Aww that means a lot that you took the time to look at my work! It's all pretty exploratory and mostly an outlet for myself, so it feels so magical when others want to engage with it. Thank you for that! :)

And I love that you took advantage of art opportunities in school! It probably sounds cheesy but I think a lot of teaching is learning from students: opening it up to them to be creative and not feel too confined by the project. Plus it's always fun to see what everyone comes up with, and how unique artistic voices can emerge.

I usually mix materials but I think my favorite medium is watercolor. I love how fluid it is, and how loose I can be with it. I could paint something highly representational, or I could let it splatter and drip and decide how it wants to be. Plus I think it's beautiful to look at. I find that students also enjoy using paint, exploring how colors blend and getting a little messy with it. It's definitely a favorite especially when we're doing abstract work!

Not surprised paint is a fan favorite, and is it even art if you're not getting a little messy? Watercolor always looks fun but I think I might end up with a big brown blob if I tried it. I always see reels on IG where people draw an outline of their dog (or whatever) then color it in with watercolors and I just love it. My dog is all black but I think he'd enjoy a pop of color if he got to choose. 

Do you have any pets? I couldn't help but notice the cutest bunny when I was doing my Brianna due diligence (stalking).

Oh that's my bunny Grady! You're right, he is definitely the cutest. He's a very funny, sweet, snuggly, soft and round little bean and definitely the perfect studio buddy. He's kind of the ideal roommate besides never doing any chores for himself. I highly recommend his company.

I feel you can represent your dog with other colors! Grady is a pretty dark gray but I always color him in blue or purple when I doodle him. And I'm sure you could still have fun with watercolors, especially given how much you enjoyed art in school. You'd be surprised what lovely colors you can blend together, and I'm sure if you did end up with a big brown blob it would be beautiful anyway.

Oh my gosshhhh Grady! I love him. I never knew I wanted a bunny but now I know (I'm learning through these interviews that I should've been a farmer). TBH I don't think Grady is the only freeloader pet out there. I think they pull their weight by providing emotional support <3

Alright, let's get serious for a minute. Suppose you were trapped in Walmart for 1 month. You can use/eat/move anything in the store, just no communicating with the outside world. What does that first week look like for you?

Being a farmer honestly sounds amazing, I would love that life! And I agree, Grady definitely does do his part. He's impossible not to love.

Hmmm I think after the initial visit to the snack section, I would take out those big plastic inflatable balls and set them loose. I've always wanted to play a massive game of dodgeball or soccer in the store with those. If I were alone in there I'd just kick them around everywhere. Then I'd take every blanket and non-creepy stuffed animal I could find and set up a mega blanket fort. In there, I'd get some popcorn and find some way of watching movies and then go wild with materials from the craft section. I think they have a pretty solid sewing machine selection so I would definitely want to play with all of those!

A mega fort is brilliant and Walmart sounds a little scary at night TBH so the non creeper stuffed animals are essential. Are you sure you're not a survivalist? I think you have a really good thing going here. 

Alrighty, last question. Assuming it's not Walmart, tell me about your favorite place on earth. Could be a vacation spot, childhood home, nearby park, etc. Where is your happy place?

Hahah I could only be a survivalist if it's in a contained, safe environment and snacks are already provided!

Oooh this is a good one. I feel like I love and get sentimental about almost every place I live, and I move around a lot so at the same time I can't get too attached. I'd say my favorite place is a quiet park with a good view of the sky so I can witness a sunset. It's sunny but shady, not too hot and not too cold and I can hang a hammock and read a book or doodle or be with a good friend or eat a burrito or all of the above. A lot of my favorite moments have been in this sort of setting and it just fills me with so much joy and contentment. I know that's not a specific place, so I hope that counts!

Yesss, that totally counts! Just thinking about a hammock with a book in a nice park is relaxing, then add a burrito? What's not to love. 

Well hey, it was so nice catching up with you! We love having you on the site and can't wait to see what you get into next.

P.S. Use code featurefriday15 for 15% off all Brianna Eng's Products now through 5/17!