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Meet Briauna Williams of BriiNoir in North Dallas

Today we’d like to introduce you to Briauna Williams.

So, before we jump into specific questions, why don’t you give us some details about you and your story.
I’ve known I wanted to be known for my Art since the age of 5, I would draw all day long and on anything I could get my hands on. This carried on through high-school, in 2007 just after my graduation my little sister was taken from us, she was killed by a stray bullet at the age of 14. My artistic eyes began to grow dull, I managed to finish college graduating with a degree in Graphic Design. My desire to create was stolen along with my sister, Charez. I had what felt like a block on my creativity for ten years, although I managed to fill this small book where I would write her letters, poems and draw pictures. After grieving so badly the healing finally began to be apparent in my world.

In 2017 I taught myself how to paint, I look at it as “God taught”. I now felt my purpose and I took off running. I began body painting, designing jackets, hats, doing henna, making body care products and teaching art in various places every opportunity I had. I began my own events “Afro Vibe and Paint”; a community event where we explore a variety of African cuisine, I have a pop up art gallery, vendors, live Dj, and some people paint while others just vibe. I took on being a full-time artist during the summers to test out if I could make money, like enough to survive on. I went full-time and resigned from my job with Mpls Public Schools. Five months later, I guess I was still in the adventurous mindset because I moved to Dallas. I’m definitely loving it here, it’s like starting from scratch again since no one knows you, I keep telling myself “Soon they will”.

Soon the world will. I am always motivated, out networking and just being a light in this world. One of my main focuses are connecting my art with healing spaces and events. Art has truly changed my world, Healing took place the moment I picked up the paintbrush. “Art Is Life” As of now I’m at various markets and pop up events. I plan on doing more art raffles so stay tuned on my social media accounts. You can book me for your events; henna and face painting services.

Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
It hasn’t been a smooth road, mental health and healing has been my main focus I’ve battled depression, anxiety, unhealthy self-talk. Being surrounded by death so much it’s very hard to stay positive and bubbly. The homicide rate in Minnesota was always on the incline and it felt like it was always someone I knew, or if not me directly then someone I knew. Even today when I hear about a young teen/child losing their life from Gun violence it brings me back to the very day of tragedy I’ve experienced. Every opportunity to be with youth and to create is a blessing. My purpose began to be clearer. Where ever God plants me, I will bear good fruit. I’m definitely in the beginnings of my business but the will and desire are strong and I have so much more in store.  I’ve expected to fail so when things don’t go as planned I just take the lesson and reproach with a modified plan.  It truly isn’t failure unless you give up.

 Please tell us more about your art.
I’m a visual artist. I’m known for my henna services, and how I combine the traditional mehndi designs with African tribal art my own creative flare. I have a variety of painting styles and things I enjoy creating. Capturing emotions and promoting healing with my art.  My work is a hint of realism mixed with an animation feel.  I love using bold colors.  The things I most commonly paint are abstract designs and faces.  I hand-paint denim; jackets, overalls, etc. I’m a teaching artist. I host paint parties. Children’s book Illustrator. Graphic Designer. Body painter.

Any shoutouts? Who else deserves credit in this story – who has played a meaningful role?
Hi Mommy, I love you.
I would like to shootout my older sister Jasmyn.  She has played a major role in my business and life she is always there to bounce ideas off, help with any behind the scenes work and always willing to come out to events to  be an extra set of hands. Always so positive and motivating.

Another big shout out I would love to give is to the hottest Dj from MN to TX Khalif A.k.a. “my other half” he has always been behind every choice I made even when I wanted to move across the country.  Before Texas it was almost NY, he is patient, a great communicator and he even helped me create the ideal working environment within our home, without giving me hell about my things being everywhere lol.  He is the very first person to view my final pieces and often the first person to hang them up in attempts to claim them for himself. He is another positive outgoing person that makes me a better individual.

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