Pia Braza is using technology to draw up fan favourites from the big screen as well as locations in Waterloo Region.
“I only got started three years ago,” she said. “I was an artist as a child but I took a 20-year break to raise my family.”
She adds that she found her inspiration through music, and in January, decided to challenge herself by drawing notable landmarks from around the region. One of these spots is the Tannery building, which has a special meaning for her.
“Earlier in my career I spent four years at D2L where I spent a lot of time with a lot of creative people,” said Braza. “It sparked a lot of creativity in me and really inspired me to push forward with my own work.”
She adds that maintaining a business during the pandemic has been a challenge, but has been motivated by the community to keep going.
“I was really inspired to continue because of the stories that I kept receiving every time I posted on my social media,” said Braza. “Community members would be messaging me and saying ‘hey I remember this, this is where I had my wedding, this is where I started my family.’”
The eye for art also runs in the family, as Braza’s daughter Raina follows in her Mom’s footsteps.
“What inspires me is music,” Raina said. “I got started first while doing stickers. I know that my age demographic has laptops and technology that they would put stickers on.”
The mother and daughter collaborated with Explore Waterloo Region on a special project in September to display their art outside for people to enjoy in a safe way.
“With it being on something like a picnic table, it makes it so accessible to people to be able to come, make some memories, have some food, enjoy some good beer, but learn while they’re experiencing some art,” said Caitlin McWilliams, marketing manager at Abe Erb in Kitchener.
Braza’s work is currently on display virtually at the Home Watson House and Gallery.