When I graduated college, everyone wanted to set up a studio under a different name than their own. They wanted to be treated as an agency rather than an individual. This is really useful if the kind of clients you want to attract are the kind that want an agency behind the work, but I really enjoyed building a personal connection with clients. I think being accessible and putting myself out there has helped clients feel like they know me before they make first contact, and maybe made them more likely to contact me over someone with similar work hiding behind an agency name. Illustrators and lettering artists most often operate professionally under their own names so it just made sense as well.
As far as my “brand”—it’s really just me. I try to be as true to myself online as much as I can so that if you meet me in person you are hearing the same voice you’ve read online for years. It’s a lot of work to be anything other than yourself. The “brand” has evolved over the years based on who I am as a person and what interests me. I used to be known for my love of cats and whiskey, and maybe for cursing too much online and on stage. Recent followers probably know me best for sharing parenting horror stories alongside client projects.