Fun Podcasts for Weird Women

 

I was going to name this blog post Podcasts for Women Who Work from Home ...but these are going to be podcasts for a certain person that likes a bit of weird in their life

I'm into listening to: Scary, murdery, paranormal, woowoo, and silly podcasts

Of course, these are in addition to all those normal ones like This American Life, Radio Lab, or Invisible...but the ones listed below are great fun and add a bit of drama to your regularly scheduled programming.  Enjoy!

The Strange and Unusual Podcast

THE STRANGE AND UNUSUAL

One-woman show spoken in story-like fashion about the reasons behind strange occurances

criminal podcast

CRIMINAL

Amazing host voice.  Tells real stories of criminals and victims to weird crimes.

the black tapes podcast

THE BLACK TAPES

This one is a bone-chiller but SO good.  It's in mockumentary format, but you forget all about that soon enough.

done disappeared

DONE DISAPPEARED

Hilarious parody of the Up-and-Vanished podcast. Humor and crimes, what could go wrong?

my favorite murder

MY FAVORITE MURDER

Super funny hosts talk about their love of hearing murder stories.  It's weird, yeah, but you can't not.

Astonishing Legends

ASTONISHING LEGENDS

Two dudes talk conspiricy theories and make it super interesting and sometimes sciency.

 

Indie Friday: Photoshop for Painters is here!

 

Photoshop for painters is here

 Support small businesses this year with Indie Friday; even if it's when you buy a gift for yourself! πŸŽπŸŽ‰  Β 

Support small businesses this year with Indie Friday; even if it's when you buy a gift for yourself! πŸŽπŸŽ‰

Β 

Do you dread how tedious background removal is in Photoshop? If you are spending hours manually erasing edges and little random bits of paper in your backgrounds, this will be perfect for you.

Ever had a client ask you to change the color of a single flower in your design? You don't have to repaint the whole piece.

You get over 3 hours of bite-size videos and you'll learn everything from getting your art into the computer, cleaning it up quickly and efficiently, recoloring and editing, and getting it ready to print.

Photoshop for Painters is available NOW, but only for a short time.  Get it while it's at this promotional price. 

 

Santa's Village Map Art Print

 

Fill that empty space by your Christmas tree with a Santa's Village Map art print!

santa's village art print, elf village, santa's workshop, north pole post office, rudolph the red nosed reindeer art

This print is new in the shop and I'm offering HUGE sizes for this because you'll love all the little details (like the street names!).  This is perfect for your holiday decor during the holidays...or if you're a person who loves it year-round (no judgement...okay, maybe a little 😬). 

I was super tempted to make Gumdrop Forest ominous (like Fangorn), because I feel like if this were actually a place, Santa would be pretty dang secretive of his whereabouts and wouldn't want the random passerby to find him and ruin all the surprises 🎁. Also, I envision Ms. Claus to be an introverted but independent lady (why else would she be cool with being in the middle of nowhere?) so I gave her her own Annex where she probably forgets about the tea she just made. I imagine her going into the creepy forest with a hatchet to cut firewood🌲and gumdrops 🍬 because she's just awesome like that. I feel like I could write a whole fanfic about this. Darn, it.β €
β €
In this particular illustration, though, I wanted a place for the elves to go that didn't feel prison-y, so I placed them near the water and went for a Scandinavian style for their homes and painted them green because I imagine they love nature walks after work. β €
β €
My favorite bits are the street names, not sure if you can see, but, we have Gumdrop Grove leading up from the bottom, then that turns into Borealis Bend (which is the best place for northern lights viewing!). You can then take a right onto Toy Dr, or a left onto Wishlist Way (which takes you to the Post Office). If you continue over the bridge over Stocking FJord, that takes you to Hot Chocolate Circle...which is the best place to live in my opinion.

santa's village art print, elf village, santa's workshop, north pole post office, rudolph the red nosed reindeer art
 

Preorder: Photoshop for Painters

 
photoshop for painters class, how to scan art into photoshop, scan painted art, best settings for scanning painted art, changing color on painted art

We have a new class for painters who use Photoshop!

Brooke Glaser and I have teamed up to create a new class for you called Photoshop for Painters.  Read a bit below or just click the button to learn ALL about that class.

Digitizing your art is a valuable skill

Having your art in the digital world will allow you to e-mail it to art directors, print your artwork (such as art prints, greeting cards, children books, or Spoonflower), and easily share it on social media, your own website or portfolio. If a client asks you for minor changes to your art, it's often faster to make changes to digitally. These skills will help you stay competitive the market as many companies may expect you to be able to send them work digitally.

In a nutshell, this class will teach you:

...how to change colors (subtly from one shade of green to another, or drastically from blue to red). Efficiently remove the background of your paper. How to choose the right sizes for your art (resolution and dpi) and how to get good colors. If you’re like us, visual learning is the fastest way for you to learn a new software, so these are all video lessons.

Photoshop for Painters: a masterclass for painters who want to bring their art into photoshop.
Photoshop for Painters: a masterclass for painters who want to bring their art into photoshop.
 

Now Represented by Artistic Designs Group (ADG)!

Yep, I've been holding onto this for about 3 months now...but it's official!  I'm SO happy to partner with such a great agency. During my time at Robert Kaufman, I actually got to work with Julia Ager, the agent there.  ADG was always easy to work with and it gave me the confidence to approach them.

megan dunagan represented by adg artistic designs group

I'm so looking forward to concentrating on my art full-time and handing off the company submissions, contracts, and show exhibitions to ADG.  I'll still be showing with my art collective at Blue Print next year for buyouts only, though. 

Email Julie at info@artsdg.com to request to view my online licensing portfolio.  If you want buyouts, please contact me at hello@megandunagan.com

Blue Print 2017 Recap

 

We did it! My collective and I just exhibited at Blue Print. In this post you'll get a recap of certain aspects of exhibiting like how the show went, pricing, what it cost, and what I wore (because everyone is *dying* to know...).

 A fancy shot of our booth decorations.

A fancy shot of our booth decorations.

 Reine from Lilla Rogers took this one!

Reine from Lilla Rogers took this one!

ABOUT THE SHOW

Blue Print is a small show (only 30 exhibitors per show) and there's one show 3 days prior to Surtex, and the next show ran concurrently. You can read more about it on Blue Print's website.  It's ran by Cinnamon Joe and a whole bunch of great volunteers.


GETTING PREPARED FOR THE SHOW

Timing: Being a perfectionist, I hate procrastinating.  I make spread sheets for everything and everything has a due date and a timeline. I'm glad the others in my collective were totally on board and not wanting to wait till the last minute, either.  Brooke was really great with setting up the timeline.  We started preparing pretty early for the show.  I want to say it was end of September when we began hustling artwork creation and getting our marketing campaigns going. We also sent out early postcards in January (I think, or December) and another follow up in early May. In addition to that, we had our collective newsletter go out every month (thanks, Katie!) We wanted to make sure people knew we were going and that we were prepared. 

I would say our busiest "holy crap" moments were between end of February and beginning of May.  It came to that time where "this is ACTUALLY happening, guys!" and we'd reconvene and have group Skype meeting about where we were and how we were doing.

Pricing: Blue Print is a bit different than Surtex (though it's changing), in that it's about 50/50 buyouts and licensing.  Most people we spoke to always asked our prices for certain pieces, however some were open to licensing as well.  In my collective, I'm kind of informally in charge of spread sheet stuff and we came up with a system to price our work.  Once we had that figured out, we put ALL the artwork we were bringing into an Airtable spreadsheet and had it automatically price our work based on a chosen complexity.  Then, that would auto-generate a letter code range that we could write on the back of our artwork. Here's the header of our spreadsheet.  Super simple but so effective.

It made it super easy to tell a price just by referencing the letter code to a "cheat sheet" on a clipboard.  We'd modify our prices if they wanted full buyouts or category buyouts. We also brought a Square chip reader (and mag reader) in case anyone wanted to exchange money while there. This never happened, but it was peace of mind. That's a link, where if you activate a Square account, you'll get free processing on up to $1k in sales.

Doing the actual work: Some of the getting ready stuff was theoretical and internet-based. A lot of digital marketing and figuring prices, etc.  When it came time to actually get my hands my printed artwork and do the booth decorations (I was in charge of cutting/printing the bunting flags), that was where the magic happened.  After I got my templates set up, I got them ready to print by converting to PDF, then PSD. Once I got the colors correct (using swatches), I replicated those colors throughout my artwork and just sent them all to the printer at once using a Droplet. Super easy, lemon squeezy. It was SO fun seeing my entire portfolio printed out. It made the show a whole new level of real. 

Yep, I actually use the techniques I talk about all the time ;)


HOW THE SHOW WENT

The biggest thing that happened was that it was the first time any of us met in person after 2.5 years of our collective!  We were telling people it was so weird to see the others' lower halves πŸ˜‚.  We all got along really well and we each used our strengths to help as a team.   It was the first time exhibiting for all of us - and people were genuinly surprised to hear it!

We exhibited at show 2, which was running at the same time as Surtex. There were a lot of companies coming over from there, too.  Mostly after lunch time on all the days.  We actually got a few companies say they came out to New York specifically to see us!  That was crazy and awesome!

While I'm still chasing leads and communicating with come companies, the show was a success!  I'm expecting to make a profit once deals are finished, thought not a large one.  Paul of Cinnamon Joe was saying how, since this was our first show, that we have to "pay our dues" and the next years will be more profitable once we have a client base that wants to see us.  You kind of become a legit business owner, it seemed, by exhibiting.

I think the real value of showing comes from the leads you get and people you meet in person.  There were companies that I never got replies from via email, however, when they met me in person and saw my art, they wanted to see more!  It was kind of interesting how that worked out.

 Photo of our booth on the first day before the doors opened.  We made a few changes at the days went on, but this is the general look of the tables.

Photo of our booth on the first day before the doors opened.  We made a few changes at the days went on, but this is the general look of the tables.


WHAT THE SHOW COST

Since I exhibited with my collective, a total of 4 members, a lot of the costs were shared. See the table below to see what it cost in total, and what it cost for only my share. You can filter or sort this list to see expense types or categories. πŸ’› Airtable!

I'm not including the cost of the Blue Print booth (which included the tables/chairs/default tablecloth) because Blue Print doesn't advertise the cost.  And the price will fluctuate in coming years so I don't want to ruffle any feathers.  However, I will say the total cost of the trip for me, not including the rest of the collective's shared booth costs, was almost $2,000.

I should also note that I didn't ever use my chip reader at the show, but I wanted to upgrade from the basic swipe reader from Stripe so I could get the fraud protection. Deals that were made at the show were just written on Invoice forms (that Betsy Siber provided) and they were billed after the show using my invoice app, Wave Accounting.  I only brought the Stripe reader in case it was needed or expected.


WHAT I WORE

 Image from Zappos.com

Image from Zappos.com

Yep, the most important question.  I scoured the internet and Facebook groups for information on what to wear...most specifically: shoes

Since leaving my full time job last July, I did a (in hindsight) bad thing.  I got rid of all my cute shoes that were business casual.  "I didn't need them anymore," I'd said.  πŸ˜‘ <-- my face when I discovered the lie I told myself.  SO, in addition to bringing my super-comfy grey TOMS (to wear after-hours)...this is what I did:

After reading a bajillion reviews and shopping around, I ended up purchasing some Dansko shoes in their 'Sam' style (in this Sand Dollar color).  They were perfect from first step. My feet never hurt and they went with everything.  I also bought some ridiculous toe socks that literally cover only your toes.  They worked really well to absorb any unsatisfactory olfactory developments. Also, pro tip: putting panty liners in your shoes will also act as a "sock".

Besides the shoes, Blue Print was very casual (more so than Surtex, I thought), and I wore a combination of leggings, tunics, dark jeans, and comfy, flowy tops.  So: get a shoe that's comfy and that is broken in.  Mostly any shoe company that deals in comfort is your best bet. 

 Brooke, Betsy, me, Katherine headed back to our Airbnb after grocery shopping.&nbsp; We got fresh flowers for the table! Oh yeah, and the Empire State building.&nbsp; No big.&nbsp; Thanks random (actually not creepy) guy for volunteering to take our photo!

Brooke, Betsy, me, Katherine headed back to our Airbnb after grocery shopping.  We got fresh flowers for the table! Oh yeah, and the Empire State building.  No big.  Thanks random (actually not creepy) guy for volunteering to take our photo!

COMMENT BELOW
Ask about vendors we used, logistics of getting there, or anything else!
 

I'm exhibiting at Blue Print 2017!

It's so weird to think that, 9 months ago, we purchased our exhibitors booth at Blue Print show #2. It seems so far away and yet in that time it felt like time went by so quickly to get to the present. All the preparations like booth decor, marketing materials, and getting all.that.artwork.finished, whew!  It's exhausting yet super exhilarating to think it's finally here!

 
Megan Dunagan at Blue Print 2017
 
 
Hydrangeas Megan Dunagan Blue Print 2017
 
 
Turtles Blue Print 2017 Megan Dunagan
 

I'm looking forward to meeting some artists I've befriended on Facebook and Instagram and my introverted-self is trying to have a brave face for meeting new ones.  After the show, I hope to make a blog post on all the details people would like to know - I know I had a difficult time finding information for random things, so I want to make sure to pass all my newly gleaned knowledge on to you!

Come by my art collective's booth (#8), Pencil Parade!  We'd all love to meet you!  If you're an art director or buyer you can make an appointment or just contact me personally.

Blue Print

May 21-23, 2017 (show 2)
404 10th Ave, New York, NY 10001
Sun & Mon: 9am-6am β€’ Tues: 9am-4pm

New Illustrations and Patterns: Hydrangea Heart

Added a new floral collection to my portfolio:

Hydrangea Heart

Digitally painted with professional watercolor brushes and I just love it!  I feel super happy about how this mini-collection turned out and even added some fun illustrations as well!  See all below.

Contact me if interested in licensing or purchasing the mini collection or an illustration (or 3!)

Hydrangea Heart | Thank you Illustration
Hydrangea Heart | A friend is someone who knows all about you and still loves you quote
Hydrangea Heart | Fabric Collection | Bolt Fabic
Graduation Sayings | Graduation Quotes | And so the Adventure Begins | Graduation Card