Artist Spotlight: McCal Joy O’Donnell

March 3, 2021
2 min read

Meet the Fargo-based artist behind Brew Bird’s latest merch.

Brew Bird’s latest merch features one of our hottest sandwiches, the Hot as Cluck. Our shirt had to feature, what else, but a hot-as-cluck chick! 

We spoke to local designer McCal Joy O’Donnell about her original design.

What inspired your latest design?
When I was assigned the Hot as Cluck design, I immediately thought of spicy chickens, big-breasted hens, and when you add some jazz in the background — flapper girls!  It was perfect magic, and I loved the idea so much that I sketched up 12 different flapper chicks before settling on the final design. I drew plenty of inspiration from 1920’s clubs, Pin-up girls, Alphonse Mucha, Betty page, and even a couple of Egyptian and romanesque inspired ladies. Once the final sketch was approved, I cleaned it up and drafted up some t-shirt mock-ups. 

What is your creative background?
My childhood home is in Minnesota, but I have lived in Fargo for 14 years. I came for my Art Ed degree at MSUM but stayed because… well, Fargo! I love it.   Although I had been a full-time artist for several years, I now spend half of my time as the Art Specialist at Roger Maris Cancer Center, the rest of my time freelancing or personal projects, so I would consider myself a full time creative! I started my creative career creating large watercolor and oil paintings themed on folklore and stories. Several years ago, after realizing that I couldn’t store all of the artwork I wanted to create, I began exploring digital art. 
I spent some years illustrating children’s books for a handful of whimsical local authors, which has led to my own writing of my own illustrated novel in my spare time. I hope to have it finished sometime this decade. Ha! But in the meantime, I love illustrating for other people and their ideas.

I’m excited to sport my new t-shirt this summer. It should be hot as cluck!

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