In Steve Jobs, the new Michael Fassbender-starring biopic about the late Apple co-founder, a considerable amount of screen time is given not only to Jobs, but to several important people from his life. Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak is there, played by Seth Rogen. Joanna Hoffman, Jobs' head of marketing, is portrayed to great acclaim by Kate Winslet. Jeff Daniels continues his impressive October run (he's also in The Martian) as former Apple CEO John Sculley. And then there's the character of Chrisann Brennan, played by Katherine Waterston. Brennan is the ex-girlfriend of Jobs in the film, and the two of them share a daughter, Lisa Brennan-Jobs. Jobs spent years denying that he was the father of Brennan-Jobs, and the movie spends a great deal of time on this complicated, little-known, and darker aspect of a man whom many believed was an infallible genius. And while we know what became of Jobs later on in life, where is Chrisann Brennan now?
Today, Brennan is believed to own homes in both Monterey and San Francisco, California, and she works as an artist. Painting seems to have been her lifelong passion, as she studied fine arts at Foothill College, California College of Art, and San Francisco Art Institute. In an interview with InMenlo.com, she described her work as "light encoded paintings", and she has created murals for a number of hospitals such as the Ronald McDonald House and Packard Children's Hospital at Stanford, Los Angeles County Hospital, and Massachusetts General Hospital. She told InMenlo of her art:
"Painting is a language for me. Letters are form, and paintings are documents for information. When I mix those two, I’m happy. It gets me out of the normal way, which is what I want to do."
In addition to her regular job as a painter, Brennan also found the time recently to pen a book about her time with Jobs. Published in 2013, The Bite in the Apple paints a portrait of the Steve Jobs that only Brennan claims to have known. She shares rare details about him in the book, such as his love for 1940s big band music, or how he would sometimes lament how he wished he were flying a plane while driving a car. She also talks about his interests in Zen meditation and his experiment with LSD-induced primal therapy. And of course, there is a lot of unflattering material surrounding Jobs's alleged cruelty toward Brennan and his denial of his child with her.
Although Brennan has managed to make a name for herself through her artwork, she will likely always be best remembered as Jobs's first girlfriend and as the mother of his child. And she seems to have accepted this by embracing it and continually telling her side of the story. Just this week, the wrote an article for The Daily Mail about her life with Jobs, and though she admits to sometimes hating him, she also confesses that over time, she has come to appreciate the man that he was. A somewhat peaceful ending, it seems, to a rather tragic tale.
Images: Universal Pictures (2)