Meet Our Artist: Megan Myers

 

My name is Megan Myers. I’m an independent fine artist, freelance illustrator, and owner of my art brand, Megan Marie Myers Art. I have an online shop where I sell my own line of greeting cards, fine art prints, calendars, and other keepsakes. I also wholesale and participate in PNW art fairs and shows.

I was born and raised in Medford, Oregon. After high school, I moved to Seattle for University where I focused on painting and received a BA in Visual Arts at Seattle U.

After school, painting remained a regular side-hustle, but my main-gig for about a decade was a career in arts administration.  Early in that profession, I worked for municipalities in the Seattle Metro area as a specialist for their cultural arts, visual arts, and public art programs. In my mid-twenties, I took a position in Seattle at Chihuly Studio where my job was to coordinate the logistics of creating and installing full scale gallery exhibitions of Dale Chihuly’s artwork as well as private commissions of large-scale glass and steel art installations for public and private clients worldwide.

I moved to Portland in 2013 to be with my partner, Matt. At this time, I decided to make a major career shift and I took a job as a sign artist at the Hollywood District Trader Joes. With the new-found free time this position afforded me, I began working on creating and showing my personal artwork more frequently. The years in Portland mark the foundation-building period for my business.

Matt and I moved to Bend in 2015 because we both love the outdoors (a major inspiration in my artwork!)  By this point, I had been creating artwork and working in the industry for about 10 years, so I made the leap to pursuing my artwork full time. Bend has been an amazing place to steadily grown my art and illustration business. I’ve shown work in dozens of Pacific Northwest businesses and markets, continued to develop new products for retail and wholesale, and have been thrilled to partner with a variety of clients on illustration and licensing opportunities.

 

What inspires your work?

I’m primarily inspired by the natural world and our place in it. My art explores our relationships to nature, our relationships to each other, and our relationships to ourselves. I’m driven to make art that helps build healthy relationships between people and nature. If the work can do anything to help create reverence for our planet, it may encourage each of us to do what we can to preserve and protect it.

Boy Hare Owl Smith Rock

In terms of style and mood, here are a few other major influences:

  • The themes from the children’s book “The Little Prince” by Antoine de Saint Exupery. This book had a significant impact on me as a young person and still today. The themes in this book are presented simply, subtly, yet poignantly.  It’s an approachable and gentle exploration of friendship, priorities, tenderness, resilience, growth and love. These are themes that I wish to present in my own way through my artwork and I strive to capture them with the lightness, sincerity, adventurousness, and timelessness that the Little Prince has achieved so successfully.
  • I’m stylistically influenced by hand-drawn cartoons from the 60’s and 70’s. Specifically, you can see whispers of angles and line-work derivative of Hannah Barbara cartoons such as Yogi the Bear, Huckleberry Hound, The Jetsons, and the Flintstones. I find that the hat-tip to this style also conjure feelings of nostalgia and familiarly in the viewers, which makes it easier to enter the world through my paintings.
  • The comic strip Calvin and Hobbes by Bill Waterson is another huge influence from my youth thematically. Calvin’s imagination enhances his settings; giving them a vividness that is beyond the literal; you see the world through his eyes. That is the way I try to use my characters too, they are the filters. Also, Calvin’s relationship with Hobbes is so genuine and deep; they are thick as thieves. In a lot of ways, they teach us how to enjoy life together. Bill Waterson is a master of showing Calvin and Hobbes’ adventures as epic yet light—never crossing the line into goofy or silly. And every-so-often he hits us with a poignant moment; the appearance of which is rare enough to move us. My characters are never quite as mischievous as Calvin and Hobbes, but they do embrace a similar adventurousness and steadfastness in their relationships to one another.

 

Preferred medium / art-making process?

I prefer to paint and have spent many years working in traditional media, primarily acrylic paint on canvas. In the last few years, I’ve also enthusiastically embraced digital tools, specifically Procreate; I use the iPad for much of my illustration work. 

 Megan Myers Painting In Her Studio

 

Interests outside your art-making?

Matt, Andy, and Smokey (my partner, cat, and dog respectively)

The other things that fill me up:

  • Long distance trail running
  • Baking cakes (I make a mean apple rum cake)
  • Reading really good scary books. Inching into sci fi too.
  • Writing secret poetry
  • Drinking coffee all over town
  • Waving at other people’s dogs.

Oh – and I lead a running group for creatives every Tuesday mornings at Pioneer Park called Creativity Shakeout. It is currently my very favorite thing.

 Megan Myers with Her Cat, Andy

 

What are you listening to in the studio: bands/podcasts/books on tape?

My perfect podcast cocktail for creative work is The Creative Pep Talk with Andy J. Pizza mixed with both of Brene Brown’s podcasts, Dare to Lead and Unlocking Us.  I also listen to hundreds of audiobooks, mostly of the thriller/horror/true crime variety.

My on-repeat music right now is: Tyler Childers, Lorde and Billie Eilish. I also stream a lot of KEXP.

 

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