Nina Bravo's Biography

I grew up and live in Northern California. I grew up in far northern California where there are lots of redwood forests. There was a redwood forest right behind my back yard as a kid. I grew up before the age of the internet and video games. My youth was spent with my best friend Shannon, riding bikes down hills, me and my friends doing each others hair into french braids ,watching shows like the Dukes of Hazard on T.V. and going to the store to buy candy that I couldn't have while at my moms house, because my mom was a hippy. I dropped out of high school because I hated school, but I went into jr. college to please my parents instead. I spent a long time in jr. college, which I really didn't like either. Eventually I had a nervous breakdown while it was finals week in school. I was under too much stress and my soul just couldn't take doing something I hated any longer. It was like my soul was trying to shake something off of it and get free of all of the things I was doing for other people and not for my true self. Years went by before I picked up my first paint brush. I was in a class for art therapy and I started painting pictures of mermaids that had wings and could fly as well as swim. I really enjoyed the art therapy class. It was really art just for fun, and to enjoy the process of art with out any pressure to perform. I'm a self taught artist. (Well I did take one art class in jr college, just one, it was a life drawing class). Besides that one class I'm self taught. I certainly didn't learn the abstract, freedom in the moment style that I have from a class. My style of contemporary painting comes through me spontaneously. I have a few talented artists in my family, so I would also say that I was greatly encouraged to be artistic from a young age. My aunt Linda in particular constantly encouraged me and gave me praise for my art. Making art was another activity that was done regularly at my household growing up. I grew up thinking it was as normal as most would consider buttering toast. I used to watch my dad paint 20 x 30 inch paintings as a kid on the weekends. I got the idea that painting was a worthy activity from him although I was just doing ballet dancing at the time not painting. I started to dislike the ballet quite a bit and when I was 15 I told my ballet teachers and parents I quit. It was too formal for me and the only fun about it was the performance which we got to do only once a year. I actually didn't make much visual art as a kid, or teenager . I started to paint and draw around 2003 for fun. As an adult I kept on working on art, painting and drawing for several years however, I didn't show my work for a while. I kept growing a big stack of it of it in my room and wouldn't share it with the outside world. One day someone I knew got to be in the Whitney Biennial. I was in college for nutrition, a major I had less passion about than the passion I felt for drawing and painting. I was really jealous, really really jealous. He got into the New York times and my parents were making a big deal about it. I got jealous enough to get motivated. I thought, I can do that. If that person I know can do it so can I. So I started painting all the time and showing my work a little. I have been excited to find out that my work has been well received and others really like it, as well as myself. I've had several friends and acquaintances buy my work. Several strangers, also have bought my work as well. It's hard for me to categorize my own work. It doesn't look exactly like a lot of abstract art work because my work has more form and design. It's not realism for sure because I never try to draw realisticly. It's definitely contemporary art because I've make it in recent history. My friend has recently called some of my art celestial art because he thinks it looks like I'm channeling extraterrestrials.