Brenda Hoddinott is an award-winning artist, author (Wiley, Alpha/Penguin, and Drawspace), internationally-certified forensic artist, illustrator, art educator, and curriculum designer.
Born in St. John’s, Newfoundland in 1952, Brenda grew up in the small town of Corner Brook. By using illustrations in books as reference material, she taught herself how to draw. At age 17, after graduating high school and a one-year commercial art course, she was employed as an artist and copywriter in an advertising company in St. John’s. After the birth of her daughter, Heidi in 1975, Brenda started a home-based business as a portraitist, graphic designer, and forensic artist. Her son, Benjamin was born in 1978.
In 1982, Brenda left her well established career as a portraitist, graphic designer, and forensic artist, to move to Nova Scotia with her family. Once there, she re-established her home-based art businesses, and also began painting in oils and exhibiting her work in local art shows. Over the next few years, Brenda’s paintings and drawings were honored with numerous awards in provincial, regional, and international art exhibitions and competitions.
As an Art Educator
Brenda has developed art curricula and taught graphite and colored pencil drawing classes since 1980. Numerous teaching positions provided her with opportunities to teach drawing techniques to students of all age groups. As supervisor of her community’s recreational art department, she taught drawing classes from beginner to advanced. She also hired/trained art educators, and designed core curriculum for several children’s art programs.
By 1989, she had expanded her teaching portfolio to include painting classes. In 1998, she chose to channel her 18 years of teaching experience into writing lessons for her first art education website. In 2002, Brenda retired from her twenty-five year career as a forensic artist to expand her writing career into authoring educational drawing books. Her website (drawspace.com) was first launched on February 2, 2005 and has been growing steadily ever since. Drawspace Publishing is a Canadian company created by Brenda in 2009 to manage Drawspace art-related publications.
Career as a Forensic Artist
Brenda worked with criminal investigation agencies throughout Atlantic Canada, including all provincial detachments of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, municipal police departments, Department of National Defense, and other federal and private investigative agencies.
She was first qualified and recognized as an expert in her field by the Supreme Court of Canada in 1989 and has provided testimony as an expert witness in all levels of Canadian courts, as a result of her many successful drawings.
As a member of The Association of Forensic Artists (based in Scottsdale, Arizona) Brenda accessed articles and educational resources to further advance her forensic interviewing techniques and art skills. She learned cognitive interview techniques and adapted them to her specific needs in working with victims of, and witnesses to crimes. In 1993, Brenda began the application process to become a full member of Forensic Artists International and was awarded a Certificate of Membership in 1994.
During Brenda’s twenty-five year career as a civilian forensic artist, she interviewed over one thousand victims of and witnesses to crimes. She completed more than 1200 composite drawings resulting in hundreds of successful identification matches.
This member has not published any books.