About & Contact…

An amazing lion in Piazza San Marco, Venice-- I'm the blond in the background!
Me (the blond) and the best lion in Piazza San Marco! We have similar manes.

Hullo, I’m Brenna. I am a non-practicing art history doctor, who wants to see the world and everything in it and tell you how amazing, sucky, or not ugly it is. When I travel  I focus on cultural activities– museums, exhibitions, historical sights, etc — and I will tell you honestly whether I think they’re worth your time, energy, effort, and money.

I lived in Rome and Italy for 18+ months while researching my art history dissertation and this blog began so I could share photos of the Eternal city and my travels; experiences at museums, sights, and in the streets; and my thoughts about it all. It has since evolved to include travel book and tech reviews, and commentary on travel culture. Now I am back in the States, with no cure for my wanderlust, but ever-evolving plans to adventure back out into the abyss.

Moby Dick is one of the best things I have ever read and has this line which is immortal and I want emblazoned on my forehead:

“I try all things; I achieve what I can.” (Ch. 79, page 355).

Go and try, achieve what you can.

Thanks for reading!

* a small note: the internet might be generally democratic, but this site is not– it’s brennocratic. If I don’t like your comment I will not approve it/delete it. If you don’t appreciate that stance, start your own blog.

If you’d like to get in touch with me to talk about Rome, books, or beagles (my three great loves), do so here:


128 thoughts on “About & Contact…

    1. Hi Brenna, Your articles are lots of fun to read. I am an artist and writer living in France. I have lived in Europe for 20 years. I studied fine art and art history. If you ever come back to Europe, let me know. There are so many awesome museums to see…

  1. Looks like a very interesting blog. I am looking forward to checking out all of the posts on your home page. Thank you for the likes on my low-key, personal blog!! Good luck for everything!
    Sabine, South of France – based translator, also hooked on art history and beauty.

  2. Oh my goodness! A fellow ITALOPHILE! How wonderful that you stumbled across my blog and I was allowed to stumble across your own. Immediate followship, on accont of YOU HAVE LIVED IN ROME!! It is my most favourite holiday destination. I love travel, and most of all Italy… but have you been to Greece? I am DESPERATE to go… (I’ll check your archives…) xx Mother Hen
    p.s. we will be visiting the Aosta valley (again) this December… woohooooooooooo

    1. I haven’t been to Greece, but I’m planning on it for next year. Rome is the BEST and the worst and the best all at the same time! I’m sure Aosta is gorgeous in the winter, I need to travel more in the north…. Thanks for reading!

    2. Yes, Italy is so lovely. It is my favorite vacation destination of all time too. I go there at least once per year. The Venito is fantastic.

      1. Brenna, when you return to Europe, if you want to travel on a budget to Greece, check out RyanAir.com. It can be a trial to travel using this carrier if you have lots of bags. You can also find great last-minute deals in terminal A at Frankfurt airport (if you fly into Germany). Let me know when you are ready to plan your trip and I may be able to give you some intel.

      2. Thanks so much! I’ve flown ryanair a few times before, so I know the (a bit unpleasant) process. I super appreciate you giving me info though, I’m happy to listen!

  3. Been twice, Rome and Tuscany, and hope to go again. Loved traipsing around Rome to all the old, off the beaten track churches because they had the most amazing mosaics and frescoes.

  4. Thanks for stopping by my blog, as you can see it’s a baby and seeing someone like it is huge! Love your page and posts and will stop by regularly to see what you’ve been up to. We are going to Venice in a couple of weeks, we’ve hardly explored Italy so we’re super excited!

  5. Thanks for finding my blog and liking my latest post about NYC. As you saw, my topics vary greatly but whenever I’m out in the world I want to share the experience. Having grown up in Switzerland I was in Italy quite a few times and what I miss most is – real espressos! I never drink espresso anywhere else than Italy or in an Italian bar.

  6. Wow, Moby Dick is one of the great novels of all time, someday I hope to create digital illustrations for it. I did hitchhike around the US and Canada, so I am looking forward to your travels. Best of luck!

  7. Hi Brenna, thank for such a quick response. Thank you for reading my blog. It is encouraging. Isn’t it amazing we can be in touch with others all over the nations. May you meet the Truth as you go on your quests. Angela

  8. Hi Brenna, thanks for the like. I’m a brand new blogger so just trying to learn as much as possible! Your latest post on the Blue Mosque made me nostalgic for Europe already (after only a week in Asia!). Unfortunately I didn’t get the chance to go into the mosque but I admired it from the outside. I love Istanbul and the food there!

  9. Thanks for liking my patagonia post. Has led me to your amazing blog. I like similar things that you do, so ill definitely look forward to exploring more of your work! Cheers!

  10. Although not a huge fan of ruins and relics, probably because I’m fast heading that way myself, it’s refreshing to read your lighthearted take on the things. I will enjoy taking a leisurely look around your blog.

    Keep up the good work! 🙂

  11. Hey, thanks for checking out my little blog! I have been to Europe but I missed out on Italy and I am a huge book + travel lover too so I will be following. Keep up the book reviews, how cool!


  12. Thanks for the Like on my latest post (Bonjour Montreal”) and thanks for all the great street art I’ve just seen as I riffle through your own posts. It’s one of my fascinations as well.

      1. Hmmm, that’s really hard to answer. Since Moby Dick was a recent read I have to say Ishmael; Jake Barnes from the Sun Also Rises; Don Gately and the PGOAT from Infinite Jest; Elizabeth Bennet from Pride and Prejudice… I could go on and on.

    1. David Foster Wallace is AMAZING. Don’t start with IJ though, definitely get hooked on him through the non-fiction essays first. IJ is a SLOG, but well worth it. I try to read a spread of stuff, usually 1 fiction and 1 non-fiction at the same time, with a mix of classic and contemporary stuff. And yes, sometimes I don’t finish. If I really clearly don’t like something in the first 1/4 or 1/3 I’ll usually abandon. If’ I’ve made it over half, I’ll typically finish in case I surprise myself and like it in the end. How about you?

      1. I used to finish, but some very poor books made me finish as life is too short, and so many other great books to read. Is there any supposed classic you don’t rate?

  13. Hi – loved about your travels – especially Italy. Have nominated you for ‘A lovely blog award’ – you may be way too established for this now but anyway the details will be up on my site later today I hope. Happy travelling!

  14. Hi Brenna! thanks for stopping by & liking my posts about Hong Kong! I really loved my time there. I hope to get to Italy soon so I’m really enjoying your pictures & stories. Thanks for sharing 🙂

  15. hey, thanks for dropping by. encouragement from the blogosphere is always welcome. you’ve got a fantastic blog yourself, made me reminisce about my trip to Italy years ago! happy travels 🙂

  16. HI Brenna, thanks for stopping by my blog and leaving a like on my recent post on Cambridge. I wish you many years of happy travelling, and I hope you develop a career that you enjoy the rest of the weeks of the year 🙂

  17. Looks like I’m joining a brennagraham fan club. Thanks for stopping by my blog also: http://georgerede.wordpress.com/

    How wonderful that you’re able to share your travels and insights around the globe. As a native Californian turned die-hard Oregonian, it was wonderful to finally visit Italy two years ago: Venice, Naples and the Amalfi Coast provided variety and wonderful memories. Should I get a second chance to go, Florence and Tuscany have great appeal.

    Congrats to you on a cool blog and thanks again for the “like.”

  18. As a brand new blogger I just wanted to say thank you for expressing your “like”. With your experience of Rome and Italy, you’d have got on famously with my dad. He was posted there during WW2, learnt Italian and submersed himself in Italian culture. I am named after an Italian love song! I will continue to follow your blog as we plan our trips in the ‘van’.

  19. Over a decade ago a friend in Trentino told me that you can live 20 years in Italy and still not have seen everything. I reflect on that statement every time we get out for a little R&R around the boot. This country is amazing.

  20. Hi Brenna!
    Thanks for liking my Rome post because I’m so happy that I got to check out your blog. I’m in Italy for a semester, and will definitely be referring back to this for my last few weeks here, thanks again! 🙂

  21. Thanks for liking my post on Istanbul, Doc. Great photos, writing style and info in your blog. Time we kept our 2007 promise to visit Italy a second time. Caravaggio, Bernini et cetera ad infinitum. I remember wondering, awestruck, what would make anyone emigrate from such a beautiful land.

  22. Brenna, I like your saying, “Go and try, achieve what you can.”
    You are seeking to achieve through art and I am trying to achieve my birdwatching adventures.
    Thanks for sharing and stopping by my blog..

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