| OWL Venice
Introducing Brennan Woo: Longtime OWL freelance designer recently turned full-time in-house Creative Director.
WHAT'S YOUR ROLE WITH OWL AND WHAT INSPIRES YOU ABOUT THE COMPANY?
I am the Creative Director here at OWL. I’ve been working with OWL founder Lindsey Wilson as a branding/design contractor for a little over 3 years now, and instantly fell in love with the brand. Minimalist design aesthetic? Sacred geometry? Triangles!? Count me IN. I love working with her- our design aesthetics just clicked right off the bat. What inspires me about the company? Lindsey has built something that is truly special and unique, and has so many ideas on how she'd like to continue OWL's mission of helping people heal from the inside out. I’m inspired to be on board this journey with her.
HAVE YOU ALWAYS BEEN INTO WELLNESS, OR WAS THERE SOMETHING SPECIFIC THAT TRIGGERED IT?
I kind of fell into the world of wellness unintentionally. I abruptly went vegan in high school because I vainly thought it would help me stay thin, and that dietary change just kinda stuck and dictated where I chose to work. I got a high school job at a local smoothie shop, and then worked at the Real Food Company- a small specialty grocery store that was in San Francisco’s Marina neighborhood. I loved that job, and learned a lot about brands within the wellness space and seasonal, organic produce. I later got my first restaurant gig at The Plant Café Organic, also in the Marina. After that I moved to LA where I got hosting job at the newly open Café Gratitude on Larchmont. I worked my way up to management, and then created a position in the head office as Chief Brand Officer for the family of restaurants- Café Gratitude and Gracias Madre- I was in that position for the past 6 years.
WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO GET INTO GRAPHIC DESIGN?
I kind of fell into graphic design unintentionally as well! I’ve always been creative, and had taught myself Photoshop, Illustrator, the basics of coding in high school (shoutout to Myspace). After I graduated high school, I was in and out of rehab, trying to clean my act up, and entered a national scholarship competition at FIDM to win a free year of tuition. I ended up winning, spent my first year studying graphic design at the San Francisco campus, and then moved to LA for my second year in 2010. I’ve lived in LA since.
TELL US ABOUT A GRAPHIC DESIGN PROJECT THAT YOU'RE PARTICULARLY PROUD OF.
I created a 26 page cocktail book with Beverage Director Maxwell Reis at Gracias Madre West Hollywood. Max is super passionate about sustainable, ethically-made agave spirits, so I couldn’t help but be excited about the project even though I don’t drink. I didn’t realize how all these popular, celebrity-backed tequila brands are cutting corners to hastily produce a subpar product that, in the long run, will drive the agave plant to extinction. I felt very proud being able to shine a light on that in a creative way, knowing each day hundreds of guests would have the opportunity to learn about it as well.
ANY PASSION PROJECTS YOU'RE WORKING ON ON THE SIDE?
I’ve been doing freelance side projects with LA barman Jason Eisner for years now, and after 2 years of planning and branding, his new brewery Party Beer Co. just opened in West Adams on Jefferson. We went with sexy, simple can artwork and crazy eclectic one-off's that I’m super proud of and excited to introduce to the craft beer market.
WHAT ARE YOUR FAVORITE SELF CARE HABITS?
YOGA. I got sober a little over 4 years ago after a long, intimate, functional relationship with alcohol, and I 100% believe that if I hadn’t found yoga, I’d be drinking right now. I finally found a method of funneling all my addictive energy into something productive- not destructive. I recently started doing Ashtanga and am hooked. Also, designing for fun- working on something that I don’t need to get approved or send an invoice for. It definitely helps keep my creativity flowing.
WE HEARD THAT YOU RECENTLY DID THE OWL RESET- WHAT WAS YOUR EXPERIENCE LIKE?
I did! Listen- the entire time I worked at Café Gratitude I never once did their cleanse program from start to finish- and theirs includes food! As soon as I’m told I can’t eat something, that something is all I can think about eating. With that said, I sucked it up and did the 4 Day Reset and here’s a quick recap:
It’s obviously delicious. The broths and shakes are amazing. Consuming each component was easy and not only that, they're all super filling. I felt hydrated, strong and light. I never felt physically hungry, but...
The hardest part was engaging in the mental battle of wanting to eat. I didn’t realize how much I eat out of sheer boredom. I would catch myself wandering to the fridge like a zombie and just staring inside of it before remembering I was on a cleanse. The first 2 days were definitely the hardest, but after that I wasn't distracted by all the "restrictions," and was able to tune in to how I felt physically- and physically I felt pretty damn good.
I also made the Mylkshakes at home, and am now obsessed with kabocha squash.
WHAT MANTRA DO YOU LIVE BY?
One day at a time.
WHAT'S YOUR FAVORITE WAY TO EAT/DRINK/COOK WITH OWL BROTH ELIXIRS?
Hot with a healthy dash of cayenne, and a pinch of Himalayan salt. I also started cooking my rice with it, and now there’s no going back to using plain water. Our health coach Lillian just shared a Kitchari recipe and I've made it like, 4 weeks in a row now for dinner.
JUST FOR FUN- IF YOU COULD BE ON ANY REALITY TV SHOW (OLD OR NEW), WHAT WOULD IT BE AND WHY?
The Simple Life, season 1.
WHERE CAN THE OWL COMMUNITY CONNECT WITH YOU?