A A name synonymous with art, talent and creativity, a name that speaks to the very soul of magic. Brandi Hartigan is the soul of BH original art. The mention of her name brings joy and smiles to those who are privileged to know this amazing artist both as a person and as an artist. Brandi has always been an artist and bringing artistic magic to the world is routine for her work.
By Deva Moore
At a very young age, Brandi was mesmerized by horses as most young girls are. She sought to create their magic by asking her father to draw her a horse. Her father insisted that Brandi draw it herself as he saw her abilities and talent. Her dad knew she could do it and do it she did!!! This led her to encourage others to embrace their own artist inside and Brandi has only lived her life encouraging others to cultivate their own secret artist inside themselves bringing the magic of art to life in many genres and styles. Brandi sees each soul as an artist who only needs encouragement and courage to free their own magic.
Brandi sees art all around her every day, as a child she enjoyed the simplicity of her grandparents delicious and satisfying meals. It opened the magic of art all around her with the basics and simple meals provided nutrition, color, design, flavors and more to her young life. Those lessons began to parallel in her life in everything she saw. Soon the lines, colors, shapes and designs began to emerge in all she saw. Brandi took those fundamental lessons and turned them into the magic of art that is BH originals.
It is important to gain some insight into Brandi’s life and accomplishments. Upon graduating from high school, she decided the Air Force was a good career choice and she signed up to serve her country. Her 13 year career found her success in the canine units and her love for art and animals flourished. Brandi found time for her art and she found inspiration in music and art filled her spare moments.
As she found her career in the Air Force ending, Brandi decided she would attend college to pursue degrees in graphic design and art. She found that she could combine her love for art and animals into requested hand drawings of photos of the animals in action during training. Brandi knew her dream to one day have a studio of her own was in her future. One where anyone who wanted to be an artist could come and explore their bliss as well as exhibiting her own work or one could simply sit and observe art in a relaxing environment. That dream is a reality. In a quaint and cozy studio space at the top of the stairs at 470 S. Main suite 400 upstairs here in Boerne. One enters on the side across from the snow cone stand and as one climbs the stairs the magic begins. Brandi encourages one to bring a beverage of their choice and a mind ready to absorb the beautiful pieces of art they will encounter.
Expect a laid back, intense, colorful and exciting experience. Brandi explains that while not everyone realizes their own talent for art, many stay in their comfort zone of merely appreciating and engaging with the art and not realizing their own abilities for art.
Brandi stresses how each person has an artist within them and if they relax and embrace it then they too can be an artist extraordinaire!!! Brandi is often quoted as saying “Real art should be attainable for everyone.” Brandi and her husband and child have enjoyed the Boerne area for several years living in the area for about 5 years. Brandi realized her dream of opening her studio in the area in 2020 but it coincided with the current pandemic which has only limited her hours of availability but not her zest for art and the public. The studio is open Tues, Wed, Thurs from 8am to 3 pm and Fri and Sat from 2 to 10pm. If these times do not work within your schedule then Brandi is open for appointments at other times. Contact her at 830-331-1228 and leave a message so she may contact you and meet your specific needs for time and services. Brandi is quite accomplished at commissioned pieces and each one is unique and designed to suit. Each piece of BH original art is a one of a kind and is not reprinted en masse.
Brandi is a master of many mediums and shies away from nothing. She is seeking out a genre of scratch ink art and hopes soon to offer classes for customers to gain competency in yet another artistic endeavor. Currently, Brandi offers private classes in pencil, watercolors, acrylics, portraits, graphic art and more. One must merely request an appointment with Brandi to learn of her many teaching abilities. Brandi has pursued art armed with her delightful raw talent. Brandi enjoys wildlife art and her use of animals and wildlife boundaries are astounding yet within the borders lie a most detailed artist renderings of landscapes and dreamscapes of color and such vibrant tones. Brandi’s use of acrylics allows her to play with color and texture. Brandi loves the window to the “soul” of the piece using balance of clean lines and space to frame the soul of the piece infinitely. The color and texture allow the story to come to life within the portrait.
Ink and pencil is one of Brandi’s favorite expressions. She has an appreciation for the line work and detail that pencil and ink affords her art. Color makes most art come to life and the use of texture adds an intensity of drama.
Having a beautiful child brings the whimsical side of Brandi as unicorns and comic themed art are a passion of hers. The magic continues as the unicorn comes to life on her canvas seeming to be on the verge of coming alive and escaping the confines of the canvas any second.
Children are always welcome in Brandi’s studio. Children are no judgmental when admiring art. They know what they like and will admire all art and enjoy exploring artistic genres equally enthusiastic and with no preconceived notions of what should be or should not be.
Brandi first started in her art career for herself. Her art was simply for her own pleasure in creating and owning. One day someone asked her to do something for them and her art became available for sale. She did create pencil drawings from photos of the canine working within the police department and those were popular with that limited audience.
Brandi suggests one just have fun with art, she is self-taught but stays up to date on new techniques and designs constantly. Music is a great motivator and Brandi always keeps some music in the background to work by and to motivate. Painting outside is great and one of her past times but it is much more complicated. The weather affects the paint, changing its texture and ability to lay on the canvas exactly how she wants it. And an interesting issue is the bugs who are attracted to the paint creating a texture not desired. Weather also affects ink and pencil marks and strokes so perfect weather is favored but seldom accessible in perfection. Brandi enjoyed her art in Paris and England. The structures, the landscapes and the people motivated her to examine the culture and find a niche in her art that welcomed beauty and uniqueness. Brandi finds Da Vinci and Van Gogh particularly impressive and while she loves their art she is intrigued by their stories.
The charm of Boerne attracts the artist in Brandi and the quaint studio space she occupies invokes the vision of a beret and a tall cappuccino for this author.
Art is therapeutic to Brandi and she expresses that sentiment for many of her students. Art is enjoyable and there are no rules in art. She is amazed at the admirers she finds that feel they have no talent until they find it opened up for them by Brandi.
Brandi has drawn a sketch of pencil work for a tattoo by request. It turned out fantastic. According to Brandi, men are more likely to become artists. Women are more aesthetic in their view of life but less likely to become artists. Brandi exclaimed that “…art is like a good song, you get lost in it.” “A good piece of art should speak to you.” Art is responsive. A photograph is more realistic and captures a moment, art captures the moment and the feeling.
Brandi has plans to organize a painting class in the future once the current pandemic restrictions are loosened. But remember she will set up small classes now for events of choice. Brandi thinks that the art world is somewhat intimidating due to its more pretentious influence. But she brings it to a more comfortable professional level of enjoyment. Brandi enjoys the small town feel of Boerne, it reminds her of the small town she grew up in. It offers the bit city benefits of nearby San Antonio while maintaining a more village appeal. Brandi is quick to assure that she accepts all challenges and no challenge is too big or small. She enjoys all art mediums and encourages anyone to dialogue with her for any art request.
She is also exploring skull carve art and is learning the anatomy of the skull to effectively create a piece of long lasting art on the animal skull.
BH originals is always directed toward the artsy and the “non artsy”. Whether one is a budding artist, an experienced artist or feels they have no artistic talent whatsoever; they are welcome at BH Original studio. One may just find Brandi painting, drawing, sculpting with paint, or painting on an animal skull but be assured whatever art Brandi is working on she always has time for a conversation and some tips!!!! If you want to hear about Brandi’s adventures around the world. Her time in the Middle East gave her some thought about how lucky we are to live where we do and have what we have. Or pick her brain on how to bring out your inner artist or better yet commission her for a piece of your own or find one in her studio that fits perfectly in your home or as a gift. No matter what takes you to her studio, it will delight you and change your life.