Born in London Brenda Hartill emigrated to New Zealand with her parents, in the late fifties, and was educated there graduating FA honours at the University of Auckland. She returned to London in the late sixties, on a New Zealand Arts council grant as a graduate student at the Central School of Art and Design. She become involved in theatre design, and after marrying, spent a period lecturing and designing in University theatre in the United States (North Carolina State University). She returned to London in the early seventies to take up a British Arts Council award in the National Theatre at the Young Vic under Frank Dunlop and Peter James. She then worked as a freelance designer at the National Theatre, (Fanfare for Europe "Twelfth Night"at the Old Vic), Criterion Theatre ("Rosencrantz") Royal Shakespeare Company, Birmingham Rep, Traverse Theatre Edinburgh, and the Theatre Royal, York.
In the early eighties, in search for more artistic independence, she turned towards printmaking and has successfully published her own work since. She is a fellow of the Royal Society of Painter Printmakers and has shown in the RA Summer Exhibition and the National Print “Originals” Exhibitions in London, as well as many mixed shows countrywide. Her work is in the collections of many large companies , including BP, Bank of England, Global and BT, and her work is sought after by art consultancies, interior designers and architects worldwide.