Free Spirit Meg’s Art Shop!

Free Spirit Meg’s Art Shop….I like the way that sounds! Anyways…I am so excited to officially announce that I have my own online store now! It’s been a long time coming. Now, I can finally offer prints and canvases of my work. I am slowly creating an online presence starting with Society6 and RedBubble. They have a lot of great products on both sites and it is really fun creating merchandise with my art! I’ve already made my first sale on Society6 and I am so excited and grateful! This is my next step to becoming a full time artist and I feel that much closer to achieving my goal! Thank you to everyone who has supported me this far. I hope I can continue to create beautiful artwork to please your eyeballs! Be sure to check out the new shop and pick up what you like. There are frequent sales going on so check back often!

Another way that you can support my work is by subscribing to Free Spirit Meg on Patreon. It is a site that helps creative entrepreneurs build their business and put together Reward Tiers. You get to choose how much money you want to contribute and receive subscription boxes for each month you are subscribed. I currently offer monthly photography postcards, totem animal prints and custom totem cards exclusively for patrons! The more I grow, the more goodies I can put in my subscription boxes! Check it out and let me know what you think!

Again, I just want to say thank you to everyone who has helped me get this far and I can’t wait to see where it goes from here! Let me know what you think of the new shop and what your favorite items are! Also, if you have a favorite totem animal that hasn’t made it to the shop yet, feel free to leave a comment and I’ll be sure to add it in with haste!

Take care, free spirits!

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Three Year Anniversary!

Today marks my third year with my blog! I’ve come a long way and learned so much in those past three years. I can’t believe what can happen in such a short time! Special thanks to everyone who has followed along this journey with me! I can’t wait to see what the years ahead bring!

 

Inspirational Quotes for Artists

I have been posting quotes on my Instagram for a few weeks now. I like to create a pattern in my posts so it goes…drawing, photo, quote, drawing, quote, photo….and so on. That way when you go to my Instagram, it’s clean and organized and my drawings don’t get overshadowed by my mob of photography. I have began accumulating quite a few quotes I would like to share with you. I look for quotes that are related to art in one way or another and that inspire me or make me feel good about creating art. I found a neat app, PicsArt, where I put the image and quote together. I use all my own photos for the backgrounds. It’s  fun to keep up with. I use to make little “computer art” pictures when I was younger. They were very simple and by no means what I would call digital art but it was still a lot of fun to mess around with crazy filters, duplicate images…etc. Now, this mini quote art is what I do to feed that part of me. I hope these quotes can inspire you the same way they do for me! Are there any I haven’t created yet? What are your favorite inspirational art quotes? Leave a comment below! I’m always searching for new quotes to use! Thanks for stopping by!

Until next time,

“Look beyond the paint. Let us try to open our minds to a new idea.”

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Totem Animal: Rhinoceros

The rhinoceros holds an ancient wisdom…

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They have been around for about 50 million years starting with their ancestor, Paraceratherium, the largest of all rhino species. They stood over 16 feet tall at their shoulder! This ancestor is also shared by horses and tapirs. Rhinos have actually been mistaken for horse-like creatures before. After being described by a historian around 400 BC, the myth of the unicorn began. A magical beast with a horn atop it’s head. The horn was said to have the power to protect one from poisoning if used as a cup. They were prized in medieval times and rhinos and narwhals were hunted to provide the gift of a “unicorn’s horn” to the king. Even today the rhino is poached for it’s horn which is used in traditional Chinese medicine, powdered and used for fevers. Unfortunately, this and habitat loss has led to the extinction to certain species of rhino such as the western black rhino and the northern white rhino.

Rhino might appear to be a lumbering brute but is in fact fast and agile for it’s appearance and is seldom aggressive. Males will use aggression when defending their territory. They will charge head on but not attacking with their horns as one may think. Their horns are actually soft being made out of keratin. They instead use their teeth, the lower incisors which can reach up to five inches long! They typically live solitary lives, only grouping up during mating season. A group is called a crash.

So what ancient wisdom do these creatures hold? They are strong and heavy, planting themselves firmly into the earth. They teach us to be grounded and stay connected to Mother Nature. Rhino holds all the wisdom needed in life. If rhino has come to you, it is time you believe the same in yourself. You know the answers; you have the wisdom. Be strong with your decisions and know why you are making them. Rhino knows when to use aggression and when to be gentle. We, too, should practice this balance. It is time we take the knowledge we hold inside us and use it to charge forward in life. You know what is best for you. Take that and run! Do not hold yourself back! You can go far if you take out self-judgement and fear.

Be careful not to trample others as you stampede through life with your newfound confidence. Help them as you go. Share your wisdom and help others find their own inner knowledge. We all have rhino’s ancient wisdom inside us. It is time to put it to use!

I hope you enjoyed learning about the rhinoceros with me. I sure learned a lot I hadn’t known before. For instance, the word rhinoceros is derived from two Greek words, “rhino” and “keras”. Together they literally mean “nose horn”. Thanks for stopping by this week! Check back next Monday to learn what squirrel’s message is!

Until next time,

“You’re braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.”

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Rhino Totem prints and products available on Society6 & Redbubble 

I’m Free Spirit Meg! I am a mother/wife/landscaper/artist working towards my goal to create and sell my artwork full time. All profits go towards art supplies, equipment and growing the blog! Your support is greatly appreciated!

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Sources:
Animal Speak by Ted Andrews
https://www.sunsigns.org/rhinoceros-animal-totem-symbolism-meanings/
https://www.britannica.com/topic/unicorn
https://www.britannica.com/animal/rhinoceros-mammal
http://www.bbc.com/earth/story/20150518-the-epic-history-of-rhinos

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.”

Scribbles & Scores

It’s amazing to see how a few scribbles and scratches on paper can create an image. I’ve been using a pen lately to prevent erasing. All my lines are permanent so therefore I don’t have the option of a second attempt to get a line perfect. I’ve been practicing many different pen and ink techniques that include hatching, cross-hatching, contour hatching and scumbling.

Hatching is using parallel lines to create different shades and tones. More space between lines leaves room for highlights. Every line is straight but various in length and placement to create depth. The more lines on top of each other the darker it is for shading. Contour hatching also deals with parallel lines but instead of staying straight they curve.

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Hatching, demonstrated with the sea floor

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Contour-hatching

Cross-hatching is using straight lines that criss-cross to create shading.

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Cross-hatching

Scumbling, in my opinion, has always been the craziest technique. It is basically controlled scribbling.

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Scumbling

There are many more techniques to try and I intend to try them all. I also personally enjoy pointilism which is just a series of dots repeating. This takes patience and I love doing natural sceneries with pointilism. Perhaps a near future project?

All in good time. For now I’m focusing on some more dog portraits, an equine piece and a painting with seahorses! Stay tuned for that and more! Hope your having a great summer!

Until next time,

“Not all who wander are aimless. Especially not those who seek truth beyond tradition; beyond definition; beyond the image.”

 

 

 

2,000 and You!

I’ve been keeping this blog for just under a year and I am amazed on how focused it has kept me. I have never had such a great way to share my work, photos, and stories with all of you! Which is why I am writing this post… to honor all of YOU! Yes….YOU!

In less than a year, my blog has hit over 2,000 views and I want to share a special thanks to each and every one of you! An artist is nothing without an audience and I couldn’t be more grateful for all the support. It keeps me chugging along and pursuing my dreams!

Ya know, I thought it was the blog that was keeping me motivated but now I realize it’s my viewers! Every like, comment, and share makes me “gitty” inside and I appreciate the time you’ve spent following along on my journey! I am more proud of my work than ever and I hope to continue creating art that catches your eye!

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My goal is to reach 5,000 views by my blog’s one year anniversary! Wish me luck and spread the love!

Until next time,

“It is not our abilities that show what we truly are… it is our choices.”

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Scatter Brain Jane

Do you ever have a million thoughts running through your head, simultaneously? Good, bad, ridiculous, valid, fantasies and realities? A little bit of everything all at once. I feel like that all the time. Sometimes I have a hard time quieting my head so I can focus on what I’m actually suppose to be doing. I always refer to myself as “Scatter-brain Jane”. That’s part of the reason why I enjoy writing. I can get my thoughts and worries out on paper so I don’t need to keep them in my head anymore. This month has been so busy and action packed that I haven’t had much time to do so. So here we are, I’m lost in a sea of thoughts, memories, worries, and ideas. They flood through my skull like water filling a glass. I’m still trying to figure out if I like it or not. Sometimes it’s okay because my mind will travel great distances and discover new understandings of life. Other times, I feel like I’m drowning in the flood. I guess it’s all about keeping my head above the water. Stop fighting it and let it carry me to where I’m suppose to go. The rapids can get rough at times but I guess when ya lighten up a little, it’s more fun than scary. Just like life. Go with it!

Until next time,

“The problem is not the problem. The problem is your attitude about the problem. Do you understand?”

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Rockets Red Glare

Happy Independence Day U.S. of A.! No one wants to sit at the computer and read blogs on the Fourth of July so I figured I would share a photo journal of all my past fireworks and flag photography. Enjoy your barbecues, have fun with your family, oooh and aaah at the fireworks, and remember those who have fought for our freedom!

Until next time,

“Quite impressive for a farmer with a pitchfork, wouldn’t you say?”

USA

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Rockets Red Glare

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Sunflower

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Fireflies

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Plasma Globe

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Wildfire

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Starlight Starbright

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Faerie Dust

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Celebration

IMG_0769 Dandelion WM
Dandelion

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Star Shower

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Confetti

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Hotwire

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Veteran

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Home of the free, because of the Brave.

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The Hunt for Heron

Yesterday was just too gorgeous of a day to stay indoors. I felt as though I had been neglecting my camera for quite some time, so I brought it along as my family and I went to play near the creek. I ventured down the creek to see ractrac wmwhat wildlife I could find. As always, there were tons of little bird prints. I also came across some decent size raccoon tracks. Then I saw it; the bird that had been eluding my camera since I moved here over a year ago, the Great Blue Heron. I’ve seen them often, usually without my camera in hand. Then when I do have my camera, they fly away too quickly before I can get a clear shot. Another occasion, adventuring through the mud, my son and I found the monster tracks of one.

12106106_773801052730846_431528395_nAlas, we did not see the Heron that created them. But this time, down the edge of the creek, was standing the lanky beauty! But even with my 300 mm lens, I couldn’t get a good enough shot. I had to get closer. I tip-toed through the trees to get a closer look. I can absolutely guarantee that to the heron, I sounded like a bull in a china shop, despite my stealthy efforts. He stayed put though, in the same spot I first saw him. Now that I was closer, I could get the shot I wanted. I snapped a few pictures, tweaking my settings in between each one. After a few seconds he took flight and flew away right in front of me! I tried to venture further down the creek to where the heron stood. I was hoping it left tracks behind that I could investigate. In my efforts, I slipped in the mud and nearly went in the creek! Luckily, I missed the water, yet I was covered in mud. I landed on my elbow, jarred my shoulder, and mysteriously cut my hand. It didn’t feel good but I wasn’t bleeding badly so I decided to continue until I saw the unspeakable! Mud got all over my camera! NO! My poor camera! Why, cruel world?! I can’t take pictures with mud all over my lens! So I was forced to turn back for the sake of my beloved equipment.

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After returning to the house, I washed up my hand, cleaned my dear camera, and took a look at what images I had. Was it all just a pain in the rear or did I get my Heron photo?

TA-DA!!

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I’m pretty happy with the outcome. There is always room for improvement but these are my best ones so far! Next time though, I’ll watch my footing better!

Have you seen any wildlife since the spring season has started? Share a comment or photo below! Thanks for reading! Stay tuned for another completed eye portrait I will be posting later this week.

Until next time,

“Of course it’s hard! It’s suppose to be hard. If it were easy, everyone would do it. Hard is what makes it great!”