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FSM Update: Equipment Galore!

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Earlier this week I posted a photo of my new camera, a Nikon D5500. I use to have a Canon Rebel xTi which I adored but sadly lost in a fire a year ago. I have been camera-less ever since and had to settle with the camera on my phone. Ugh! Better than nothing but it was extremely frustrating at times…most times. The worst is over though and I have finally replaced my beloved equipment. Although this time I decided to go with Nikon. Honestly, there is no particular reason other than that was the model and price I decided upon. I was looking at both Canon and Nikon with no prejudice to either brand. I have used Nikon while working as a photographer for Lifetouch so I am familiar with both. Both take great pictures and are user friendly. It all boiled down to what I could find in my budget that offered what I expected from the camera.

I came across an amazing bundle which gave me an overwhelming amount of accessories. I truly do not know what to mess around with first. I received four different lens, seven different filters, a tripod, a very nice bag to hold everything and countless other items….memory card, card reader, table tripod, flash…the list goes on. All of this for less than $1000. I could not pass this up. The camera is considered an “entry-level” camera but comparing it to my Rebel which was 10.1 MP, it greatly outshines it with 24 MP! So for me, it’s quite the upgrade. I have taken a few pictures here and there to start getting a feel for it. No special lens or filters yet. Nor have I been able to take pictures outdoors but I hoping to go out this weekend for a little photo adventure. I am very excited to play around with the macro and telephoto lens. I have been wanting a macro lens for a very long time! I can’t wait!

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Also, my husband and I have recently improved our computer station. We each have our own computers now on a two person desk with three monitors. I’m not going to lie, it is surreal. It’s nice being able to work next to each other; my son also gets more time to play his PC games so we are all happy. My husband and I want to start streaming our own channels; now we have hardware to do so. I still need to get a good webcam or two and a mic but other than that I’m ready. Starting a stream is another thing I am excited to mess around with! By the way, do you like my Starry Night mousepad? I couldn’t resist! 

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I am truly grateful to be in the position to gear up with new toys and hardware. I’ve worked really hard to get to this point and I am finally seeing the harvest. It’s a great feeling. I do not have to “settle” with outdated equipment that barely works, is poor quality or any other headaches I have dealt with in the past. Work hard and you will be rewarded. I feel like I have finally earned it.

Thanks for stopping by and sharing in the excitement! What kind of camera do you adore? Or perhaps there are some streaming artists out there with some tips for a noob? Any suggestions for a good webcam? Leave your comments below. Thanks for reading!

Until next time,

“You got to dress for the job you want, not the job you got.”

 

 

 

#1 Rocky the Snowman

Let’s give “Megtography” another shot. I used it as a type of therapy, I suppose you can call it, after my family suffered the house fire. I posted one black and white photo a day and now looking back I am glad I did it. In such a terrible moment in my life, that doesn’t have to remain my only memory from that point in time. I have pictures with friends and family, dinners together, funny moments with pets and other great memories for me to hang on to. So I know no matter what happens, I can always find the light in the dark.

I’m not struggling with life right now but looking back at those photos inspired me to start Megtography again. I enjoy having a journal in pictures to remind me of all the great times I had that I may otherwise forget.

So here we go…

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3/11/18, Megtography #1 – Rocky the Snowman

 

FSM Update: Snow, Sketches & Subs

I apologize for my absence last week. These nor’easters are kicking my booty! I have been working snow removal since these last random snow storms have rolled in, therefore, I was gone most of the day and night. The snow has finally gave us a breather…at least for now.  Although there is one nice thing about working in the middle of the night in a snowstorm; everything looks absolutely beautiful. Nothing is touched, the snow is fresh and everything totally blanketed in white. Unfortunately, I was drenched and was afraid to pull out my phone for many pictures. I did however manage to get these two photos.

Winter Nights
Winter Night
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Blue Night

I haven’t had the opportunity to draw anything new these past two weeks but have a couple treasures sitting in my sketchbook waiting to be shared. I recently made a flight to Ohio and had a four hour layover between connecting flights. I had downloaded the “IT” audio book to go along with the actual book I am reading right now by Stephen King. (I am actually going to finish it tonight and I’m ecstatic!) Anyways, long story short, I’m obsessed with “IT’ and drew this while I listened to the audio book. It was relaxing even though the story is so murderous. ;P

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“IT” 2017 movie poster

I have also been working on tangles. I have a couple sketches that I ,naturally, enjoyed creating. Do not be offended by the finger. Even peace-loving free spirits can get angry sometimes. I was pretty upset that week. Nothing was working how I planned. So I said, “F!ck it all!” and I felt much better after the drawing! ;P

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Some days…

I have a list of totem animals I still want to complete. Every time I think of a new animal I write it on a post-it note on my desk. I’m up to 56 and counting. I feel like the squirrel, the manatee and the hawk will be completed in the near future. I’m surprised I have not done horse yet. That one needs to get bumped up as well. Stay tuned for new work and symbolism to come!

I’ve recently subscribed to WordPress so I have many new tools at my disposal to better customize my website. I immediately opted for my own domain name which is now…dunt da da da…. freespiritmeg.com! No more dot wordpress dot com. I do love you wordpress, dont get me wrong, but it’s time for my own name. I also have changed the look of my page, adding a new home page and a theme that is clean and simple. I feel it is a suitable look for displaying my work and is easier to see that this is an “artist’s website”. A new slideshow welcomes you to the site and my blog now has it’s own tab where you can find all of my recent and past posts. I will be continuing to play around with all these new features more and more to bring a better viewing and reading experience for all.

Thanks for stopping by this week! I hope you are staying warm through this last winter battle. What do you think about the new look? Do you like the new layout for my page? Leave a comment below and let me know what you think.

Until next time,

“I believe whatever doesn’t kill you simply makes you…stranger.”

Totem Animal: Owl

Owls are everywhere! There are over 200 different species of owls in habitats ranging from deserts to forests to snowy tundras. They are all around us yet we seldom even notice. Being nocturnal and having fantastic camouflage, they could be right in front of our faces and still go unnoticed. But if you are one of the lucky ones who has witnessed this avian king, perhaps they have a message for you.

No, it’s not your invitation to Hogwarts. Although Owl represents wisdom, it is what makes them wise that I find most interesting. Owl sees through the darkness where others cannot. Owl is a silent flyer, in order to swiftly snatch his prey in the dead of night. He moves through the night without even a single swoosh from a feather. Native Americans have called them “deceiver feathers”. Deception is Owl’s way.

His eyes are not spherical but instead immobile tubes. This is why Owl can rotate his head 270 degrees to be aware of everything around him. Owl’s ears are asymmetrical on either side of his head so he can hear multiple dimensions.

If Owl has presented himself to you it may be time to heighten your senses to see everything more clearly. Pay attention and broaden your perspective to better judge a situation your in. You may come off a little intimidating to others but this is only because you can see through the dark. No one can deceive you when you have the vision of Owl.

Owl might be warning you that you are being deceived by yourself or another. Beware of others who may seek to harm you. Owl is associated with white magic and also with black magic. Make sure you don’t end up on the wrong end. Stay sharp and strike with the precision of Owl when necessary.

 

My mother would hear an owl calling in the night from time to time. A short time later a loved one would pass. Whether it was a family member or a beloved pet, the Owl seemed to deliver the warning. Death is another symbol of Owl. Though it should not always be taken literally. Sometimes the call of Owl represents the death of a chapter, renewal.

I hope you have found some insight on this week’s post. What experiences have you had with Owl recently? There is a lot more symbolism that I didn’t cover today. I would love to hear your story in the comments below!

 

I am very pleased with how this piece came out. I really enjoy incorporating Zentangle and feather patterns. Theye simply go together. It just shows how there are patterns through out the universe, just repeating….repeating…..over….and over….into a beautiful existence. All the same, all connected. It just depends on how far back you stand and look. Thanks for stopping by this week.

Until next time,

“Pin feathers and golly fluff!”

Art by Logan

Totem Animal: Raccoon

Raccoon is a powerful totem. These fuzzy ninjas of the night represent protection and generosity. It is common for males to band together for greater strength against predators or other male raccoons from different territories. A group of raccoons is called a gaze. The gaze will have a dominant male who will stand watch and defend the group while the others forage for food. The best morsels will be given to the dominant male as a sign of respect and gratitude for the protection he offers. Raccoon is generous and protects the young and elderly. They are the guardians for those who feel like a dark horse, the underdog. They offer strength and wisdom gained from self experiences.

If Raccoon has bumbled it’s way across your path, it is time to share your wisdom with others in need. Does anyone around you need help or guidance that you can offer? You possess knowledge that you have worked hard to obtain. It is time to share this with others. Do not become a crutch but rather equip them with the tools necessary to obtain their own strength. Lift them up, dust them off and show them the way. Speak up when others speak ill behind another’s back. Do not tolerate unfounded judgement and gossip. Recognize the guardian within you. The protector is always rewarded for their great deeds. Though beware of those who refuse to help themselves; those who are lazy and greedy. They will drain you of your resources while refusing to learn how to stand on their own.

Perhaps it is you that needs to be lifted up. Are you stuck in self pity and feeling like you’ve hit rock bottom. Change your perspective and see the strength you hold within. Do not become a victim but fight. Help someone. Do not become selfish but instead be giving. The gratitude and appreciation you will receive for helping another will give you the boost of confidence you need.

On the contrary, Raccoon could be warning you to take time for yourself. Female raccoons often live solitary lives excluding mating season and when raising young. Have you been giving too much energy and have left nothing to care for yourself. An empty pot feeds no one. If you do not tend to your own needs first, you will have nothing to offer those who depend on you. Take time for yourself and recharge.

It’s no surprise that I enjoyed creating this piece. I enjoy creating all my totems yet I believe Raccoon may be my cutest so far. I still need to add color to

this piece as well as moose and owl. I’ll talk about Owl symbolism next week! My prismacolor pencils are preforming beautifully and I can’t wait to finish these three totems completely. I have much more coming that I’m excited to share with everyone. I hope you’ve enjoyed learning the different totem animals with me. I know I have!

What raccoon stories do you have to share? Leave a comment below and thanks for stopping by this week!

Until next time,

“Don’t call me raccoon. -I’m sorry. I took it too far. I meant trash panda.”

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Sources: Medicine Cards by Jamie Sams & David Carson

https://www.nationalgeographic.com/animals/mammals/r/raccoon/

http://insider.si.edu/2013/07/suburban-life-does-not-alter-solitary-ways-of-the-raccoon/

https://academic.oup.com/jmammal/article/89/3/646/862216

Totem Animal: Moose

I have always wanted to see a moose in the wild. I have yet to have the opportunity but until then I can incorporate them into my work. I enjoyed creating this piece very much. I still try to rush through my work sometimes if I get too antsy but creating zentangles and doing so in pen forces me to slow down. To enjoy it more rather than being overwhelmed, feeling the urge to hurry and finish pieces. It is not the destination. It is the journey.

Moose is a powerful totem for self esteem. Perhaps that is why I was able to approach this piece more calmly and confidently than I felt creating the bear. If you are a lucky soul who have encountered these massive beasts in the wild, you may have heard the male and his mighty call. They confidently holler, looking for a mate as they strut their massive rack, sometimes weighing up to 40 pounds! They are the largest deer species in the world.

If Moose has crossed your path today, it may be time to start giving yourself a little more credit for your accomplishments. No matter how big or small, everything we achieve is worth a “good job” and we must tell ourselves that. Encourage yourself and become empowered with your “git ‘er done” attitude. Moose energy gives you the power to encourage others to get the work done while also not being afraid to get your own hands dirty. You are a leader; a leader that can lift the ones around you. Wisdom comes from Moose and is often associated with our elders. The wise ones that have the knowledge and encouragement that is to be given to the younger generations. Moose tend to eat tall grasses so there is no need to keep their heads low in an uncomfortable manor. You too should hold your head high, taking great pride in the success you have achieved and the enlightenment you can offer to others in having such a confident attitude.

Or maybe you are being too bull-headed? If taken too far, this confidence can be turned into selfishness. Do not stand on top of others while you keep your head held high. Becoming too egotistical is detrimental to you and your relationship with others. Do not forget that we all have something to learn and everyone has something to teach. No one is better than the other. If we lose sight of this, we are hindering our opportunities to grow further.

Between Bear and Moose, I’d say it is time to stand strong in my decisions and continue with confidence. This way of life becomes easier the more I work on my art. So I will continue to do so! Stop by again soon to check out the next totem animal, the raccoon!

I hope you enjoyed this weeks post. Have you seen a moose in the wild? What lessons has Moose taught you? Share your story in the comments below! Thanks for reading!

Until next time,

“Great men are not born great, they grow great.”