SHORT VERSION WORK BIO:
Digital designer by day, fine artist by night.
Brenda has proven success in digital media, bringing expert knowledge of multimedia design, creative strategy, vision, communication, and management with an emphasis on web 3.0, social media and usability for global brands.
Brenda Kato formed Kato Marketing LLC in 2012 and has been working on fulltime B2B contracts and doing part time freelance projects for small businesses. Over the past three years Brenda has worked contracts for the following national companies and international organizations: Loan Logics Inc., the United Nations, Lambda Legal, the XO Group Inc. Brenda has also consulted and managed projects for many small businesses helping them with branding, marketing and developing a web presence using the number one CMS, WordPress.
Brenda spent four and a half years, 2007 to 2012, working for Newtek Business Services filling several roles as Web Producer, Digital Designer and Web Marketing Manager. Newtek Business Services is a large business services corporation in New York City with several web properties and over 550+ plus affiliate sites called “alliance partner portals”. Newtek provides business financing, insurance, merchant processing, payroll and web hosting. Newtek is the largest non-bank SBA loan provider in the US. They are one of the largest Microsoft hosting partners. They are one of the largest merchant processing companies in the US. Brenda was responsible for managing the affiliate sites, assisted with the rebrand to "The Small Business Authority" and produced their new website from concept to completion. She created a content rich, informational, business resource site for business owners.
Brenda has been working in the field of communications for many years. She started out as a public school art teacher and graphic designer. She spent the 1990's as a 3D animator and art director and in 2000 turned to website design and marketing. She has worked inside many large corporations in the following roles: Web Producer, Digital Designer, Web Designer, UI/UX, Animator, Art Director, Creative Director, SEM - Search Marketing, Social Media Management and Analytics.
Brenda's diverse experience working for government contractors, video production studios, multimedia design, marketing, broadcast, and event companies helps her understand the marketing needs for many industries. She works with high level marketing concepts to create eye-catching, effective visual communication from scratch for products, services and branding. She meets with stakeholders to discuss the vision and concepts for promoting services, products or branding. Brenda excels at being creative and is passionate about getting results.
Experienced with all media channels, Brenda has developed interactive training for the military using 3D animation and Flash animation. She has created animation and graphics for broadcast TV, websites, CDs, presentations and industrial videos. Brenda worked as Art Director with the creative team at Wizard Studios International Event Company to create award winning experience design. Some of the projects Brenda worked on include, themed interiors for large corporate events, the interior for the WWF Restaurant in Times Square, the Doral Golf Village’s Millennium Celebration with Earth, Wind and Fire, Lager’s Old World Grill logo and interiors, Outback Steakhouse’s Clubhouse Tent for Golf Tournaments, and Bush Gardens Haunted Trail. For seven years in a row, she created the graphics, slides, and video presentations for the annual awards presentation for Outback Steakhouse.
Brenda spends her time off from work perusing her passion for fine art. She likes to work in acrylic paint, mixed media, modern batik and high-density urethane foam. She has explored many subjects over the years and is currently interested in “The Day of the Dead”, cubist portraits and yoga energy art.
Brenda’s excellent references can be seen on her LinkedIn profile.
LONG VERSION WORK AND ART BIO
Brenda Roberts Kato was born in Jacksonville, Florida. She discovered her artistic talent as a child, winning various art poster contests as early as the first grade. In high school, she entered the commercial arts program at the Westside Skills Center, a vocational school, where she learned the basics of graphic design, illustration, sign painting, silk-screen printing, airbrushing, and 3D displays. She won many awards during high school. She won 1st place in Florida State and 2nd place in the USA for a presentation she created for V.I.C.A. (Vocational Industrial Clubs of America). She conceived the 3D display to celebrate the 200th Year Anniversary of the US Constitution and to incorporate the silks from each trade taught in the skills center. She managed to get collaboration from the wood and metal shop students to construct the 3D Display. She scripted, directed and edited the video presentation showing how all students in all the trades worked together to created the display. She designed the presentation binder, laid out all the content and formally presented the project at the contest.
Brenda also won 1st place in Duval County's "Just Say No To Drugs" poster contest sponsored by Continental Cablevision who turned her poster's slogan "Wanna Grow? Just Say No" into a TV commercial.
After high school graduation, Brenda entered the Graphic Design program at the Savannah College of Art & Design and soon discovered computers in her elective classes. Her first animation was on an Amiga using Aegis Animator and she fell in love with digital design. After a year and a half at SCAD, she transferred to Ringling School of Art and Design in Sarasota, Florida where she studied illustration, painting, photography, animation and art history. Brenda's work was included in the RSAD senior show and their annual publication.
After college, Brenda returned to Jacksonville and helped form a local arts group called “A City of Expression”. Over the next two years the membership grew to be about 150 artists. This arts group created opportunities for artists to get community exposure outside of the established galleries by producing monthly group art shows in parks, coffee shops, and vacant storefronts. They also produced a magazine featuring many new and unrepresented artists. After gaining much exposure, this group launched and advanced the careers for many of todays top artist. The founders went on to join larger arts organizations and pursue new creative opportunities. Brenda went on to serve on the board as a marketing consultant for Beaches Fine Arts Guild. She was asked to participate in many group fine art shows, showcasing her series of "Green People" acrylic surrealist paintings.
Brenda's first job after college was teaching art at an inner-city high school and elementary school. She loved teaching art to children, but when they took away her classroom and gave her a closet with a rolling cart she could not suffer the lack of support and respect for the arts and decided to give up teaching for public schools. Brenda wanted to become an animator and joined a large government contractor, Logistic Services International. There, she gained experience with several animation packages including WICAT, Animator Pro, and 3D Studio MAX. She also fell in love with Adobe PhotoShop and Illustrator. LSI developed computer based training courses and instructor led courseware for the military.
A few years later, Brenda joined the commercial video and multimedia department at Orlando's JHT Multimedia. She was soon promoted to Art Director and excelled at illustrating storyboards, creating info-graphics, animation, and user interfaces for computer based courseware, CDs and websites. Her worked included projects for NASA, The Army, ORMC (Orlando Regional Medical Center), Olive Garden, Watermelon Board, FedEx and EDS. In 1995 her 3D animation made the Siggraph show reel for the use of a new plugin with a ribbon effect in 3D Studio MAX. She animated the open for an Orlando Housing Convention, which showed an orange with a bunch of ribbons twirling around and a pop-up book with a neighborhood and the sun rising in the back. During this time Brenda created a series of paintings exploring body language and surrealist imagery called "The Green People" and exhibited and sold her work in a local restaurant and bar called The Copper Rocket.
In 1997, Brenda became the Art Director for a live television talk show for Paxson Communications in Clearwater, Florida. Paxson Communications used her background design elements in the overall look and feel for the launch of the entire PAX Network. Next, Brenda became a full-time freelancer, accepting work from several Tampa production facilities, including Tampa Digital, Island Media, Magic Studios, Edit Suites, and Digital Video Arts. She was soon offered a full time Art Director position with Wizard Studios International, a large themed-event company. Brenda was part of a talented creative team that handled conceptualization, illustration, fabrication, painting, and lighting. She specifically, helped theme the interior of the WWF Restaurant in New York, designed "Country Club" style tents for Outback Steakhouse Golf Tournaments, created the FedEx/Doral Resort's Millennium Celebration water-screen video, and designed the logo for Lager's Old World Grill.
In 2000, Brenda moved back to Jacksonville to open Digital Chemistry Inc., a Multimedia Design Alliance. She worked on several projects with this alliance of marketing and design professionals. In 2001 she rejoined her friends at Logistic Services International to work on the ASE contract for the Navy. As lead artist she managed a team of artist to create distant learning courses using 3D Studio Max and the latest Adobe Flash technology.
Brenda joined Emergency Debt Relief Inc. in 2003 as their Art Director and was part of a marketing team providing EDR with an excellent website and printed marketing materials. She left EDR in March 2004 to work with a former EDR co-worker, Jeff Nykerk, who had left previously to found Pro Design Labs a marketing and web development company. Brenda worked on many web design projects for small businesses with Pro Design Labs. Still active in the local art scene, Brenda was part of the initial group of people responsible for creating a monthly arts festival in the urban core of downtown Jacksonville. She began showing her acrylic painting series of contortionist females in several venues during the “First Wednesday Art Walk” and was the featured artist at the Karpeles Manuscript Museum for the month of October 2004.
In November 2004, she became Art Director for SkyeTec Environmental Building Solutions and helped them transition from a small mom-n-pop inspection company to a thriving mid-size indoor environmental solutions provider. During this time she had several art shows in bars and restaurants in Jacksonville, Florida and her first art show in New York City at a Russian Tearoom in the Lower East Side. She was one of 12 artist selected to show at Art After Dark, April 21st, 2006 at The Florida Theatre in downtown Jacksonville. This art show is an annual charity event for the theatre.
Brenda attended an AIGA design conference in NYC and became inspired to move to the city to advance her design career. At this conference she learned about the study of patterns created by sound called Cymatics.
Cymatics and archetypes fascinated her and the study of all patterns reinforced her understanding and research of design, user interfaces and user experience. She moved north in August 2007 to work in Manhattan for Newtek Business Services, now called The Small Business Authority, as a web designer and marketing projects manager.
Her political art show called "I Love Big Brother" hung in October 2008 at TenEleven Pub on Avenue C in the Lower East Side. In her spare time, Brenda redesigned the website for New York Hardcore Tattoos and in 2008, she launched a community site called NYHC4LIFE.com to help promote the music genera. This was before Facebook and WordPress. She also redesigned the website for the band Murphy’s Law who is fronted by hardcore legend Jimmy Gestapo. Working with her favorite bands in the NYHC community was a dream come true. Brenda joined and participated in several professional groups in NYC, Web Grrls International a technology group for women, AIGA’s New York chapter for graphic designers and IXDA, a group for user experience professionals.
In March of 2009, she joined Art-Trope, a start-up arts group in NYC with the mission to help artist show in high exposure venues in the city. Brenda started drawing cubist portraits at corporate events managed by Wizard Studios in NYC. She created a quick portrait with watercolor markers on paper much like a street sketch artist would in about 10 to 15 min for the party guest. To her surprise, the people loved it and actually started fighting over who was next in line. Since then she has explored creating cubist portraits with acrylic paint and mixed media.
In 2010 she organized the first ever NYHC4LIFE ART SHOW hosted by TenEleven Pub on Avevue C in the Lower East side of NYC. The show featured two hardcore artist legends, Gary Gilmore and Sean Taggart along with new artist Craig Holloway, Brenda and photographers Chris Roque and Samma Jamma. The artist showcased album covers, flyers, paintings, and photos of hardcore punk bands.
Still working in New York for Newtek, Brenda decided to start working remotely for the company and moved back to her hometown in Jacksonville, Florida to be near her elderly parents and large family. In April of 2010 she opened a fine art gallery downtown in The Jacksonville Landing called the Bee Gallery & Studio with two other female artist partners. The space was part of the “Off the Grid” initiative putting artist in unused spaces downtown. Bee Gallery participated in the First Wednesday Art Walk each month and featured contemporary work by local and guest artist. Having a studio space allowed Brenda to work on her modern batik, sculpture, and large paintings. She continued to work on her cubist portrait series. Brenda participated in the community art project called Imagination Squared and submitted her cubist self-portrait which is now on permanent display in the downtown public library. Brenda hosted figure drawing classes, sewing and craft classes at the Bee Gallery.
The 2011 NYHC4LIFE ART SHOW was hosted by Live Fast NYC on Clinton Street in the Lower East Side of NYC and ran for four months from May till the end of August. It featured artist Gary Gilmore, Craig Holloway, Adam Finnegan, and Brenda’s new Hardcore Legends Skateboard designs. Brenda showcased her new “Day Of The Dead” paintings, batiks and hand carved skulls in the October art show at Bee Gallery called “Haunted Hallows Eve” featuring Horror Artist Jerrod Brown.
In March 2012 Newtek Business Services restructured when her boss, the marketing director and part owner of the company moved to the Phoenix office decided that all management needed to be onsite with him. Brenda decided to part ways with Newtek and start her own company called Kato Marketing LLC. Since launching Kato Marketing Brenda has worked B2B contracts for the following national companies and international organizations: Loan Logics Inc., the United Nations, Lambda Legal, the XO Group Inc. Brenda has also consulted and managed projects for many small businesses helping them with branding, marketing and developing a web presence using the number one CMS, WordPress.
In 2014, while working for the United Nations in New York, in her time off, Brenda taught two hour painting classes at night in bars and restaurants as a licensee for Paint Nite. She grew the paint and sip business to include ten venues and four teams of artists and assistants in the Queens, New York area and four venues in Jacksonville, Florida. Brenda parted ways with Paint Nite in July of 2014 to create her own creative events company. Festive Arts provides arts and craft events for teambuilding, fundraisers, birthday parties and other private events.
Brenda continues to pursue her passion for fine art with projects using modern batik, mixed media, acrylic paint, found objects and high-density urethane foam. She is still exploring "The Day of the Dead" imagery, cubist portraits, yoga energy and sacred geometry.