We had the good fortune of connecting with Reebok Brown and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Reebok, can you talk to us a bit about the social impact of your business?
This is the question it all comes down to, isn’t it? Because if you aren’t using your business to help someone, then why are you doing it? I enjoy helping people, but my favorite way to help has always been to combine utility with the element of surprise. Things along the lines of painting a room while my husband is at work, or finding the perfect birthday gift that I know a person needs when they haven’t realized it yet. I enjoy doing things for others, but I love doing it in such a way that it’s surprising and delightful. That’s what I do with my business. Sure, lots of people love their pets, and anyone can print off a photo and stick it in a frame. But when I draw a Pet Portrait for someone, I’m not only preserving the memory of someone’s pet; I’m doing it with a quality of detail and beauty that brings my clients surprise and delight. That’s what Treebok Pets is all about: surprise and delight. And we could all use a little more of that in our lives, couldn’t we?
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
I’ve been an artist all my life, but Treebok Pets didn’t come about until 2017. My husband and I had recently moved states and adopted a dog, and when Hurricane Irma blew through that Fall, our new dog sat entranced at the window, watching the trees sway in the wind. I thought to myself, “He would make the cutest little charcoal drawing.” And that’s how Treebok Pets was born. The drawing is the fun part; the business side is what I struggle most with. I’ve gotten so much help in this area from Business Boutique and Christy Wright- it’s a program for women who want to make money doing what they love. I tell anyone who will listen that Christy can teach you how to run a business! I worked for years in retail, and I always disliked my inability to plan or make commitments since we only received schedules 2 weeks in advance. I love that I get to make my own work schedule now, and I’m excited that I’ve found a niche that will allow me to work as much as I want when we’re ready to start our family.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Ha! Well, I’m an introvert, so I’m not the best person to ask. Here are some of my favorites though:
-We love eating at Wasabi in Flowery Branch- best sushi, I’m having some tonight!
-Jack’s Local Station in Braselton is really great American food
-La Casa Del Taco in Flowery Branch has fabulous tacos
-Hiking at Tallulah Gorge or Amicalola Falls!
-Spend the day in Helen, a Bavarian-style mountain town with fun things to do like tubing and mini golf
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I’ve had so many positive artistic influences in my life. The first were art teachers, K-12; my high school art teachers, Mrs. Kind and Mr. Lockett taught me many lessons, many beyond the art realm. My manager, now friend, who quit her day job to pursue her artistic dream: Gwen Bowen of Frog Crossin’ Pottery. My coworker and friend who worked two jobs until she took the leap to full-time artist and is now kicking butt working for Dark Horse Comics, Bridget Connell. An artist who was first my client, then my friend, who lately has been doing some really cool stuff for Levine Children’s Hospital in Charlotte, Jonathan Grauel. My husband, who didn’t freak out when I told him I wanted to be a full-time artist, and has supported me every step of the way. I can’t pick one person who has encouraged me in this journey. There have been so many.