Morristown artist’s illustrations bring residential and commercial properties to life

By Jillian Risberg 

 

Her stylized drawings of storefronts, homes, cars, restaurants and a variety of retailers pop off the canvas, to the delight of mixed media enthusiasts in Central Jersey. 

 

“Molly’s attention to detail was second to none. The artwork I asked her to complete brought tears to the eyes of the business I commissioned (it) for,” a client says they were thrilled and plan to hang it in their establishment.

 

Molly Brusser offers architectural (exterior/interior perspective) illustrations: houses, rooms, commercial buildings, streetscapes located in Hunterdon, Warren, Morris, and Somerset Counties. 

 

They have turned into meaningful keepsakes. 

 

“If I sell a portrait of a restaurant or house I want it to be a commemoration of what the building was,” says Brusser. “Like a photograph, it captures a moment in time. For commercial, I really try to get in the character of the building, to show the actual usage of it.”  


In off time from her art studio, the illustrator can be found visiting local thrift shops since she also loves to paint and repurpose furniture and home accents.  From selling her designs at flea markets, Brusser branched out to her own website and a realtor friend suggested doing house portraits.  

“Home decor, interior design, architecture, history of furniture… how do we mesh that together and create a theme I like to term, ‘civilized space,’” the mixed media artist says.  “I want to start expanding to commercial clients, hone in on different restaurants in the area.  My thinking: ‘why stop at houses.’”

 

Brusser has been pleasantly surprised her creations are resonating with people after a random September 2021 Facebook (ad) posted to multiple groups she’s in took off. 

“I wasn’t expecting anything,” says the illustrator. “I’d get feedback like: ‘as long as you attach that portfolio piece, your work speaks for itself’ and to have something personalized like that is less common now because everything is digital.”   

She originally drew pictures of houses for that realtor friend, who gifted them to clients.  

“Between October and December alone I got 40 orders (only three were realtors),” Brusser says she usually puts a call to action at the end of ads she writes now. “People say, ’I’m interested,’ or ‘send more information.’ It was people like you and me who just wanted a picture of their house.”

For commissions she uses graphite marker and acrylic, but the mixed media artist says everybody thinks it’s watercolor based on her drawing technique. 


“As long as you know your craft well, you can adapt any medium to what you need,” says Brusser, adding that when it comes to the element of art she enjoys the most — lately her stuff has been very stylized.  

“So, caricature art because people have told me (my) house pictures are playful, like caricatures of their house, created by man-made environments — as opposed to photo realistic.”

 

Her art journey started young.

 

Back in daycare, Brusser snuck over to the art center even though they were only allowed to do one station per week.  

“Since (age) five, I knew I wanted to do something creative and with the arts,” the illustrator says she uses her professional marketing background to generate sales, and recently completed additional schooling in computer graphics.

 

According to Brusser, there are multifaceted creative fields one can pursue, but most colleges — unless they have an intensive art department — you learn to be an art historian or painter.  

“So I think it gets a bad rep of ‘you’re not going to be able to do anything’ with (the degree), because schools don’t openly market creative careers,” she says. 

 

Then the mixed media artist found Hunterdon County Polytech, in hindsight where she wishes she attended instead of college. They have an intense art program geared toward juniors/seniors in high school, with the goal of making them employable. 

She circled back to art because of its current relevance. 

“When you study creative disciplines like graphic design, user interface, industrial design — it’s more complex than people think,” says Brusser. 


The illustrator says architecture teaches her about physical structure, human culture and art history. 

“My art captures the result of existing human usage and potential capability of buildings and furniture,” Brusser says she loves developing her own business and unique relationships with art aficionados. 

 

For more information or to contact Brusser, visit 

myminstudio.com/

 

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