ST. AUGUSTINE, Fla. — Many tools in an artist's tool box help them achieve a vision. Briana Serna needs to make sure her vision matches the real-life inspiration. 

"This is really good because it shows a lot of detail," Serna said. 

She uses the details to craft faces through history, painting the lifelike details on wax figures.

What You Need To Know

  • Painters keep up wax figures at museum

  • Potter's Wax Museum is the oldest in the United States

  • The museum is open seven days a week

  • Artist Briana Serna's favorite figure is Martin Luther King Jr.

“It's very cool that I get to come here every day and make things look realistic and work on painting or sculpture. It is what I wanted to do all my life — so pretty rewarding," Serna said. 

Serna is one of the few artists that keep up and preserve wax sculptures — at Potter's, the oldest wax museum in the country. 

“We have a lot of figures that belong to the museum because they've made an impression on history,...and I think we are the only ones really doing that," Serna said.

She takes pride in her days spent painting and cleaning pieces of history from a little corner office that overlooks the fruits of her labor. 

She has a few of favorites among the hundreds of restorations on which she has worked. 

“The inspiration in Martin Luther King Jr.'s eyes and the feeling behind them,  I'm really proud of it because it's a special part of St. Augustine history and the civil rights movement," Serna said. 

Along with Martin Luther King Jr., the museum features dozens of historical faces and figures, from Ponce De Leon to Ray Charles. 

Serna has worked on most of them. 

“I think if I could somehow time warp and meet myself and not disrupt the time continuum by doing that and go back and meet me at 9 drawing my little dragons, I think I'd be impressed. I'd be thrilled," Serna said. 

Potter's Wax Museum is open seven days a week, and most days you can find Serna and other wax painters hard at work preserving the collection.