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 😂.  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. 💛 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.  😑 <-- 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 • Tues: 9am-4pm

Art Exhibition: VinoNostra in Fullerton

Visit VinoNostra Wine Bar this month to see my artwork!

In downtown Fullerton, Calif., we celebrate First Fridays with an Artwalk.  Many of the restaurants, bars, and art galleries promote artists who are hobbyists and full-time artists. 

Dena of VinoNostra Wine Bar (website | yelp) was kind enough to host my gallery of original images and art prints for the month of February.

We had a great opening night last Friday (the 3rd) and I hope you'll be able to make it during the rest of the month.

I want to also thank all of you that came!  Besides family and close friends that supported me, I was really happy to see others that I hadn't seen in a long time!  Also, to those who were brand-new, kind faces that purchased or talked to me about my artwork, I wanted to send a special thank you to you guys as well. You really made my night and it made me really glad to see my artwork being appreciated by people outside of my regular social circle.

If you come later in the month, have a beer or glass of their wine! She has an amazing collection.  The atmosphere is great for post-college-aged people looking for a relaxed place to chat and have a good time.

Take a look at some of the art I'm displaying:

Info about VinoNostra Wine Bar:

See my artwork ALL of FEBRUARY

 

Location:
123 E Commonwealth Ave
Fullerton, CA 92832

Phone:
(714) 278-1023

Contact:
dena@vinonostra.com

Hours:
Monday-Closed
Tuesday-3:00PM-10:00PM
Wednesday-3:00PM-10:00PM
Thursday-3:00PM-10:00PM
Friday-12:00PM-10:00PM
Saturday-12:00PM-10:00PM
Sunday-1:00PM-8:00PM

 
 

Podcasts & Audiobooks to listen to while painting, drawing, and designing

 
podcasts and audiobooks for creatives painting drawing designers

My other post, Podcast for Women Entrepreneurs, is so popular (thank you Pinterest!), I thought I'd share my favorite podcasts (and audiobooks) for listening to while being creative. 

Unless I'm writing emails, making calculations, or reading through a prompt, I'm probably listening to a podcast or an audiobook. When I'm doing those other things, it's likely I'm listening to something instrumental or folk-y on Spotify.

Get your iTunes ready, and check out my favorite podcasts

(listed by theme; I won't state the obvious ones likes Serial, Radiolab, or This American Life, because, duh.)


PODCASTS

---CRIME---

Criminal
"Hi, I'm Phoebe Judge; this is Criminal." Probably the best opening line to a podcast I listen to. Her voice is great, and stories are intriguing.  All about crime; whether it be the person who commited it, witness to a crime, or about things that are crimes.
iTunes | Website

Sword and Scale
Well-produced show about true-crime, high profile trials, unsolved murders, and missing persons cases (from their iTunes info)
iTunes | Website

---SUPERNATURAL & PARANORMAL---

The Black Tapes
A serial docudrama that takes you from one paranormal story into a deeper, darker one.  Kind of spooky, but really entertaining.  Don't listen at night! This is my favorite one besides Astonishing Legends (bottom of this supernatural list).
iTunes | Website

Lore
Bite-sized stories about "dark" historical stories that "fuel our modern superstitions."
iTunes | Website

TANIS
This is another docudrama by the same creators of The Black Tapes.  It's about the search for the mythical entity called Tanis.  They kind of get over their heads and the journey is very engaging.
iTunes | Website

Astonishing Legends
I love every episode of this show.  Scott & Forrest are great hosts who talk about strange legends and events in history (and even current events).  I love the interviews with peopole who've hadclose encounters, too!  I never miss an episode of this. 
iTunes | Website

---STORY TELLING---

The Longest Shortest Time
I'm not a parent, but these stories are too good to ignore, even so.  There are even episodes about women who've decided to not have children and ones that wanted to become a single parent.
iTunes | Website

Reply All
A show about things that involve the internet.  Super broad theme makes for some good episodes regarding things that happen because of the internet.
iTunes | Website

RISK!
True stories told by people who experienced "hilarious, heart-wrenching, and remarkably real" stories.
iTunes | Website

The Allusionist
Podcast about words! The wanna-be linguist in me loves this.
iTunes | Website

Strangers
"True stories about the people we meet, the connections we make, the heartbreaks we suffer, the kindnesses we encounter, and those frightful moments when we discover that WE aren't even who we thought we were."
iTunes | Website

---HISTORY---

Stuff You Missed in History
History lessons with entertaining and lovable hosts.  I don't listen to all their episodes, but everyone I've listened to is a fun learning experience.
iTunes | Website

The History Chicks
My favorite history podcasts. This has women-centric historical figures only.  I love that they talk about the women behind some prominent men and women that are just as prominent.
iTunes | Website | Pinterest board about their stories


AUDIOBOOKS

These are recommendations for only the audiobook version. While some may be read in a physical book at the same enjoyment-level, these books are especially delightful to listen to due to factors such as: Full-cast readings, sound effects and music, and/or the narrator's take on the story.

Graceling series (Graceling, Fire, Bitterblue) by Kristin Cashore
Series of books I *really* enjoyed.  Female lead in a fictional world where some children are born with a "grace" or special power.  You can tell one is graced because they have heterochromia and once their eyes change as a child, they belong to the King. It's a story of rebellion, adventure, growth, and first love (though that's on the back-end story).  Even though the characters are young-ish, I wouldn't say this is a YA genre book series, except for maybe Bitterblue.
Audible | Author Website

The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern
"The circus arrives without warning. No announcements precede it. It is simply there, when yesterday it was not. Within the black-and-white striped canvas tents is an utterly unique experience full of breathtaking amazements. It is called Le Cirque des Rêves, and it is only open at night. But behind the scenes, a fierce competition is underway a duel between two young magicians, Celia and Marco, who have been trained since childhood expressly for this purpose by their mercurial instructors. Unbeknownst to them, this is a game in which only one can be left standing, and the circus is but the stage for a remarkable battle of imagination and will."  Just read this, it's on my all-time favorite list of books ever.
Audible | Author Website

The Rose Garden by Susanna Kearsley
This is mainly a romance, but it has historical elements that I love. I love most of Susanna's novels. 
Audible | Author Website

Outlander series by Diana Gabaldon
Okay, how can I not put this series here?  This also goes for the John Grey books. Diana is currently writing the NINTH book in the series.  Yep, ninth.  And she thinks there may be one more after that.
Audible | Author Website


You may also like:

Podcasts for Women Entrepreneurs

These are business-focused for creatives building a business.  There's legal advice, marketing tips, and interviews.


 

New Classes being released starting January 2017

Excited to announce I'm stepping my tutorials up a notch (okay...many notches)!

 
 

Starting beginning of January, I'm going to be releasing (fingers crossed) one NEW class a month  around the topic of surface pattern design and illustration and how knowing your computer and programs is how you accelerate your business' efficiency.

I'll be talking about some of the things my tutorials teach you, but I'll be going into way more depth and covering all the bases of that topic, rather than a quick(ish) video. I've been messing around on iMovie & Premiere Pro (okay, let's be honest, mostly iMovie, 'cause I can't even with that other one), and I'm hoping to give you guys well cut and edited video with a bit of fun music, too.

What you'll be getting:

• 20-25 minute video on a specific topic.
• PDF worksheet with areas to fill in your own notes.
• If applicable, one real-live sample of the thing I'm helping you do.  For example: Custom-made Action, Brushes, or Templates.

The first class in January is going to be a reboot and complete redo about learning to automate your workflow using Actions and Droplets in Photoshop.  Very few people seem to take advantage of both of these things and it's my mission for everyone to be automating every fibbity flam thing they can. It's one of those things that makes you realize how incredibly sluggish everything moved before you discovered them.  You'll love this one.

Above all, I want the mini classes to be fun and engaging while being affordable.  I'm kind of tired of dry and informational stuff.  Yes, sometimes, you just want to see how to do something, but other times, you need to understand it.  Understanding is where I come in.  And I'm all about allegories, you guys.  And you're gonna get em.

Be the first to know when a new class comes out!

Select "Fellow Artist" PLUS you'll also get some free brushes & printables.

You can also follow me on Gumroad to keep up to date.

Orange Coast Magazine Editorial Illustrations

My illustrations are in a magazine you guys!

http://www.orangecoast.com/subscribe/

Spent a week in September working on these editorial illustrations with Orange Coast Magazine's Creative Director.  I had originally emailed the magazine about a month earlier and almost forgot about it, when I got a reply out of the blue.

Orange Coast is a well-known magazine, locally, with a considerable amount of subscribers and it was a pleasure to work with such a great publication 💕

The article I contributed to actually appeared on the cover (sans illustrations), so that's kind of awesome!

The Creative Director had specific needs, but asked me to be creative when illustrating, giving me some freedom, but with a direction. 

My Process

Initial sketches that I "inked" over later in Illustrator (except the article opener page which I inked with my Micron pens).

After that, I used my lightbox table to watercolor over my sketches.

megan dunagan editorial illustrator orange coast magazine illustration

It was really fun to see the Creative Director place my illustrations into a mocked up magazine while I worked.  It went through a few revisions and the outcome was fantastic!

 
 
Line-lime-1000.jpg

Video + Subscribe

You can subscribe to Orange Coast magazine here.

Note: All photographs & videos were taken by me with my Canon 20D and 50mm lens or iPhone.  Orange Coast Magazine is not affiliated with this blog post; all thoughts are my own.

 

Trip to Ireland

This isn't a travel blog...

But it's my blog dag nabbit!

But I wanted to post some photos from our trip to Ireland this pay May 2016.  We arrived in Dublin and stayed there for about 3 days too long (maybe I'll love it next time!),

Our trip started after we drove to Galway (pr. Gahl-way, not with a long a).  Airbnb was new to us, but the hosts in Dublin & in Galway were great.  Especially Galway -- if you have a chance to stay there, I HIGHLY recommend staying in Marie's Annex (if it's listed).  She was just great and the place was cute and close to *all the things*.

Cong Ireland Abbey
Cong Ireland Abbey bridge
Cong Ireland Abbey forest

After that we made our way to Dingle, stopping at Dunguaire Castle and getting lost at a cave. 

Dunguaire Castle Ireland
 Cliffs of Moher

Cliffs of Moher

 Connemara Pass, north of Galway

Connemara Pass, north of Galway

Let me just say....

DINGLE IS THE MOST AMAZING PLACE.

You MUST stay here.  It's a bit out of the way, but if you're like me -- rather introverted but enjoy meeting people in a slow way -- Dingle is the way to go.  Plus, they were filming the next Star Wars movie while we were there so there was a hub bub about the small town.  We even got to see the crew on a *distant* hill (read: we didn't see much but we can say we were there!).

 Dingle Peninsula Ireland

Dingle Peninsula Ireland

 Dingle Peninsula Ireland

Dingle Peninsula Ireland

After that, we drove down to Kinsale, then Cobh (pr: Cove), then up to Cahir (pr: Care), then Cashel to see the castles. Our last stop before heading back to Dublin was a sleepy/small town of Slane.  I don't REALLY recommend it as there was literally one place to eat, but it was somewhat close to the larger city of Drogheda (pr: Draw-heh-duh).

 Cashel

Cashel

Overall, Ireland was just great -- I wanted to stay in Dingle forever.  I loved almost every place we went that was a bit slower-paced than the OC.  Dublin was just crazy and reminded me of LA in that busy kind of way.  Lots of people, too many cars, and a shite ton of buses. ...But if you like huge cities, you'll love Dublin.  Plus, if you love your Irish authors, they always remind you that they were born in Ireland ;). One of the cool things I did like about visiting Dublin was that this year they were commemorating the 1916 Rebellion.  It was super interesting to learn about how the Republic wanted to break way from the UK.  This is basically why there's a Northern Ireland (which is part of the UK) and Ireland (Republic of Ireland), which is a different country all together.

Castle Ireland