Interview with Frills & Thrills Blog

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Good Morning Lovers,

I'm over the moon right now with all of the incredible support I've received regarding my new Etsy shop!! Thank you for the continued encouragement and amazing feedback as always. For any of you who have ever wondered what it would be like to open your own store, I highly suggest setting up an online sales platform to get your feet in the water. It has been so fun to think about packaging, presentation, the photography, really is my very own virtual store!!

I also wanted to share with you this awesome interview I did with the lovely Sam of Frills & Thrills blog hailing from South Africa. She asked me a few weeks ago if I would be interested in sharing my journey to becoming a fashion illustrator on her blog and I jumped at the opportunity. So here are her questions and my answers below:

What sparked your interest in fashion illustration?

From the time I was very young I had two unfailing loves, painting and fashion. When I was around 7 years old, I can remember sketching a collection of 30 women's looks under my stairwell in my childhood home. I had no interest in learning how to make the clothes I illustrated, but I knew that I wanted to keep drawing them. It took me about 15 more years to discover that I could actually have a career doing just that!

Travel Write Draw Etsy Shop Now Open!!

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Good Evening My Lovelies,

I hope you are all having a great start to your week. I'm so excited to share with you that I have finally, after many, many years, opened my first ever Etsy Shop YAY!! I can't believe I did it. I narrowed the selection to 8 of my most well known and received illustrations to start, but I intend to add a new print to the bunch every week or so to keep the selection fresh. Each 8.5" x 11" print comes with an 11" x 14" acid free beveled mat and foamcore backing and is shipped with love. I'm beyond excited for my amazing readers to have my fashion illustration prints in their homes!! I would love to get your feedback on the shop, any prints you want to see added, or any suggestions so head on over here:

Much love,
Meag xx

Hot Child In The City

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Good Evening My Loves, 

It's almost Memorial Day weekend here in NYC and the city is buzzing with eager vacationers. A year ago today I was steaming my Greek goddess dresses to roll into my carry on luggage onwards to Athens, Greece. Under any other circumstances, typically I would be throwing my dirty laundry into a luggage right now, preparing to head home to Toronto. But this year is different. I'm doing the inverse. I'm planning my very own Manhattan stay-cation, because secretly the city is far more tolerable without half of its occupants!

Also, a little less secretly, I have been working like a maniac from morning to night these past few weeks on new illustrations, collaborations, commissions, connections and I'm quite simply EXHAUSTED! When it comes to the young entrepreneur life, you name it, I'm doing it. I don't think I've worked this hard...ever! So a stay-cation might seem a little lacklustre to most but I actually can't think of anything better than just staying put and channeling the inimitable city cool of Aussie bombshell Zanita (illustrated above).

What I hope more than anything is that all this hard work pays off, that the bags under my eyes were a very small price to pay for the reward. I know they say that in life you need balance, but how does anyone ever get ahead taking things in stride? Maybe the joke is on me. I guess you can only ever just live for you, the way you want to, for the things you dream of. I'm excited to share what is coming down the pipeline with you all and just hope that there is still so much more to come. Until then, it's time to give these swollen eyes a rest!

Much love,
Meag xx

Spring Awakening

Saturday, May 17, 2014

I'm 28 years old and for the greater part of my life I have been a crippling perfectionist. I have felt, from the time I was 7 years old, like a walking contradiction. There I was, a natural born artist with a love of expressing myself through paint, but was often too anxious about my work being perfect that it would paralyze me from creating. I never felt like my lines or my drawings were good enough. And as an adult I carried that through with me. I always felt like someone could paint my ideas better than I could until one day, very recently, that changed.

Sometimes, be it fate or chance, you meet people who change the course of your life forever. Almost a year ago I met a boy, another designer in his own right, and fell in love. I'm not one to advocate that love heals all because I think that your life, your happiness, is ultimately up to you. But sometimes you meet someone who holds a mirror to you and shows you what you are capable of, and no other scenario can do that quite like love can. Love is transformative. Love, and I mean real love, forces you to grow, to confront yourself, who you were until you met that person, and who you want to be as a result.

Frieze Art Fair New York 2014

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Good Evening My Darlings!!

I hope you've all had an amazing start to your week. I am beyond exhausted right now, and just finished battling with HTML in (#$%&!!), so it's about time for bed. BUT, I have been dying to share my Frieze Art Fair 2014 roundup with you all from this past Sunday, so here it comes!!

Are any of you unfamiliar with Frieze (also known as #selfie headquarters)? Well basically it is a BIG international contemporary art fair, that started back in 2012, and showcases around 190 of the top galleries worldwide. It is an exciting spectacle, like the equivalent of NYFW at Lincoln Center to the art world. People go to see and be seen, and I'm starting to believe that the art thrives on this behaviour; we the attendees are apart of the artistic commentary. That said, it is truly an adventure; one that involves a ferry ride to Randall's Island, and is worth exploring, at least for the sake of your Instagram ;p.

This year felt a little like Coachella, with Joe Jonas bopping around, and millennial girls standing in front of reflective art pieces taking portraits with their iPhones while gallerists rolled their eyes. But I guess that was the same last year too. I think the biggest difference for me was the lack of the truly outlandish (i.e. Jeff Koon's Balloon Dog). The art in general seemed a little more relatable but the clothes still remained performance based. The Illustration I drew above was referenced from STYLE.COM's collection of Frieze street style photography. I couldn't help but notice that art was imitating life here, or vice versa, with her Celine SS14 brushstroke skirt and surreal Chanel perfume bottle crossbody bag.

I took in a lot of inspiration from the illustrations and paint handling I saw and I'm hoping to test some techniques in my coming work. Have a look at my Frieze Frame scrapbook and let me know your thoughts. Does anyone else notice that the line between art and fashion is becoming increasingly blurred? You won't hear me complaining - that is my lifelong dream :).

Much love,
Meag xx

Just Another Fashion Blogger?!

Friday, May 9, 2014

A few weeks ago I reached out to a fairly popular illustration blog to enquire about a possible feature of my work. When the response came back telling me, very sweetly, that the blog curator didn't feel I had found my voice yet in my illustrations, I was quite simply...crushed. I've never been one to handle criticism easily. I always, by default, cling to the bad feedback over the good. Positive reinforcement sticks to me like water on a window - it hits and it slips until it's gone. So when I got this first real dose of constructive criticism about my work in a while, I started reevaluating everything, and I mean work, my blog, my graphic design layouts, my Instagrams, every social media post. In part this is due to my own crazy neuroses, and trust me I have plenty, but also because I have been completely and utterly engrossed in social media for the past month. I'm eating, drinking, sleeping BLOG.

Ever since taking the Blog for Fashion Business course at FIT, I've started seeing my blog, my illustrations, my professional website, basically my entire web presence, with a hyper-critical eye. Furthermore, I oversee all the marketing efforts and social media at my full-time job, where I really spend the greater part of my days scouring through blog after blog. And to be honest, the more I've seen recently, the more everything is starting to look the same to me. I feel like there was some sort of memo that was released to an exclusive set of bloggers with the perfect prescription for how to blog with grace, and clearly I was left off the email list. Every outfit seems impeccably styled, every Instagram of aerial view brunches, fresh cut flowers and feet, berries and ice cream cones, life through rose colored designer sunglasses...I started feeling like a total outsider, like a total blogger failure.

Emma Stone - Met Gala 2014

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Good Evening My Loves, 

Finally after a long day of not feeling so great, I managed to complete this fashion illustration of my ABSOLUTE favourite look from last night's Met Gala 2014 - the indelible Emma Stone in this stunning Thakoon gown. No one does tonal, pink on pink combos, better than Miss Stone. With that red hair, how could anyone possibly make the same impact?! AND if you follow me on instagram you can enter to WIN a signed copy of either versions of this illustration by #regramming it and tagging my Instagram handle @travelwritedraw!! Winners will be selected at random and announced on Friday. So if you love this illustration, and want the chance to win a signed copy of your favourite version, head over to instagram and show some #regram love. Now back to finishing the Buenos Aires postcard!!

Much love,
Meag xx


Saturday, May 3, 2014

Good Morning My Loves,

I hope you are all having a great start to your weekend. I spent yesterday evening and the greater part of my Saturday morning painting for this post, because it is inspired by a topic that I have been DYING to discuss with you all here on Travel Write Draw!! Fast fashion is a contemporary term that has been tossed around these past few years, to describe the crazy phenomenon of quick runway to retail turnaround of high end designs made accessible to the masses. Usually Zara and H&M are names that follow closely in the same sentence. But Fast Fashion for me is a MUCH more loaded term than one just used to describe the $1,500 sweater on the runway today, made available for $15 tomorrow. 

For one, this past February saw some of the biggest designers turning to the culture of fast food and lowbrow everyday grocery shopping (MOSCHINO and Chanel respectively) for inspiration for their collections. Not to mention that every blogger in attendance was already wearing the now infamous golden arches of MOSCHINO to the show, before it even came down the runway. And another prong of the term concerns the mania of instagram where I get my daily dose of anxiety scrolling through my fellow fashion illustrators posting new works everyday, upwards of 5 times per day. All the while, I'm sitting at my full-time job, 5 days a week, wishing I could just run home to sketch, paint, post, repeat.

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