With the pandemic slowing, cities are slowly opening back up. Amazing new experiences and artists are crawling out of their artist shells. Briana Tippetts, also known as Bri, celebrates her creative space and shares it with Birmingham. Tippetts sat in front of a fair crowd at the O’Neal Library in Birmingham, Alabama to share her most recent masterpiece, Rictus. Rictus is a spellbinding comic book of Japanese folklore that is bewitching, gory and kindly expressive of Bri’s inner creativity. Upon hearing of her appearance, HypeFresh decides to drop by to pick Bri Tippetts’ brain a little. Of course, we wanted support the artist as it takes will and courage to stand before a crowd. Artists are very sensitive about their work, so support matters. Without further ado—
Bri sat patiently and nervously next to a few stacks of books as the doors open before her presentation. As we approached her table for a short interview, she happily obliged. With a smiling face, shoulder length hair and a pair of glasses, she sat with us to answer a few of our questions.
Bri hails from Las Vegas, Nevada and her alma mater is UNLB, where she studied Fine Arts in painting. The artist recently moved to Birmingham with her husband a few years ago. When HypeFresh asked about her history of writing comic books, she replied with a sure answer, like most, as a child. However, over the last couple of years, she’s been taking the art much more serious. She is adamant about creating art that she would like to see on bookshelves.
In reference to Mental Health Awareness Month, Bri explains her coping mechanisms with her creative process and how painting is relaxing for her. The comic book author actually illustrated her own book, taking out 2-3 months to write and spends the rest of the year illustrating.
On Bri and Rictus
So, what is Rictus actually about? Bri explained the details of her story about a curse in a small town and teenagers who try to stop it. The book’s influence comes from Japanese culture. Being a 90’s kid, and having Urban Legends being great part of her upbringing, it fits perfectly into the narrative.
While studying under Ben Bavington in college, who is a modern artist who also plays a major part on her journey to comic book writing. From then, she began venturing into doing her own comics. Claiming to grow up as a monster kid, delving into horror movies from Blockbuster heavily contributes to her desires as a comic book writer. Bri explained in depth about how horror movies influence her work as well as growing up with Bernie Wrightson and Stephen King who are heavy influences as well.
Bri Tippetts is now working with a writer right now who has already been published a new graphic novel. Since most artists are sensitive about their work, she is reluctant to speak in detail about her forthcoming project. It is another horror graphic novel.
Where To Find The Artist
To find Bri’s work, you can search her Instagram at @britippettsart, where there is a link to her Etsy account and other articles.
Here is a taste of an excerpt from Bri’s work:
More than seven hundred years ago, at Dan-no-ura, in the Straits of Shimonoséi, was fought the last battle of the long contest between the Heiké, or Taira clan, and the Genji, or Minamoto clan. There the Heiké perished utterly, with their women and children, and their infant emperor likewise—now remembered as Antoku Tennō. And that sea and shore has been haunted for seven hundred years…