Blog You're Happy / Snapshot: Julia Breckenreid

Julia Breckenreid is a helluva lady. She’s conceptual, articulate, wise and kind. Evocative and perceptive, her illustrations express both mood and idea through strong, smart and beautifully painted imagery. To put it simply, she’s passionate about illustration. It shows in her work, her teaching and her community efforts. She’s an inspiration to the folks here at Sorry You’re Happy and we’re fortunate to call her a friend.

Julia lives in Toronto with her very funny and Epicurean husband, Ryan. She is also a founding member of this wonderful creative hub.

1. In about 25 words or less, tell us a little bit about what you do.
First and foremost, I’m an illustrator: conceptual, intuitive and versatile. I specialize in editorial, got myself a gold medal for it. Secondly, I’m an educator & illustration community activist.


Awarded a gold medal in the Editorial category at the Society of Illustrators in 2010.

2. How long have you’ve been doing this?
I graduated in 1998 and never looked back.

3. What’s inspiring you currently?
I just got back from two inspiring trips – Italy and then the ICON7 Conference in Providence RI – I highly recommend both. Otherwise, I’m inspired by reading a lot, music, working in my garden, organizing objects in my home and studio with a touch of OCD, people watching and Ryan Feeley.

4. What’s your dream project?
Great collaboration with people who do what they do well. And who will allow me to do what I do well.

5. What’s your favourite holiday?
First day of school – does that count? It always feels like the New Year, more so than in January.

6. Cake or pie, and why?
Do I have to choose? Elderberry pie, which I haven’t had in YEARS because no one other than my Grandma George and a few Mennonites knows how to make it. And it’s tedious. On the other hand, Chocolate cake or ice cream are at a tie finish.

View more of Julia’s work here.
Follow her on twitter here.

Thanks, Julia!

Julia Breckenreid

Sorry You're Happy is an art licensing & surface design studio made up of husband and wife illustrators Kyle Reed and Jen Hsieh.

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