Hello, I’m Adriana.

Six years ago, my then boyfriend (now husband) gave me a shiny new set of paints for the holidays. “You can finally get back to painting!” he suggested innocently. To this day, we don’t know the source of that miscommunication. Truth is, I had never painted before in my life.

A few weeks later, not wanting my boyfriend to think his thoughtful gift had been a bust, I pulled out the paints and decided to give them a shot. And so I began my first painting – a portrait of the boy I loved.

It was 3:00 am by the time I finally ripped myself away from the canvas. In that one night of painting, I had become officially and hopelessly hooked.

Sometimes I like to think about that serendipitous gift, and how it redirected my life in such a profound way. It reminds me that potential is everywhere, and that we’re far more limited by our lack of experiences than by our lack of abilities.


I never imagined that I would become an artist.


In fact, after I graduated from Princeton University in 2007 with a degree in cognitive psychology, I set off to do nonprofit work. After several years in the nonprofit sector, I began secretly craving a more creative life. So, I began to cook, write and paint on the side. I spent an intense year getting my culinary degree at night, while working my day job, completing some food writing projects, and clocking in as a restaurant manager on weekends. It wasn’t until this particularly fateful day that I even began to consider a creative career.




I’m an unapologetically upbeat artist. I paint the people we love, the places that form us, and the pets that brighten our lives. I also take an occasional detour to paint cupcakes (because, why not?)

And I do it all from my home studio here in Madison, WI, where I live with my husband Noah and my mischievous dog Copernicus.


But enough about me, let’s talk about you.


I’m big on making new friends, so please don’t hesitate to reach out to me. You can find me on Twitter, friend me on facebook or talk with me on my blog. If you’d like to send me a note, just head on over to my contact page.

I also send out occasional emails to my super awesome email list. If you’d like to receive them, just sign up here


I hope to meet you soon,



Hi there! I'll be taking maternity leave during the summer of 2018. If you'd like a pet portrait during this time, feel free to drop me a note (awillsie@gmail.com) and I'll let you know as soon as I'm back to the studio. Thanks! Dismiss