Megan is a fine artist and graphic designer living in Louisville, Colorado. Born in Chicago, Illinois, Megan moved to Fort Collins, Colorado with her family in 1986. She graduated from Colorado State University in 1995 with a B.F.A. in Fine Art – Graphic Design. Megan worked as a jun-ior designer at the prestigious Monigle Associates agency in Denver, CO before moving to Steamboat Springs in 1998 to fulfill a lifelong dream of rocky mountain living. She opened Strange Bird Designs as her small graphic design studio in 1999 working with many clients within the Steamboat Springs resort community.Megan returned to Colorado’s front range in 2012, where she owns & operates Strange Bird Designs together with her husband, Jamie, now based in Louisville, Colorado.
“The foundation of my art is drawing and painting. I work with two mediums: oil pastels drawn on repurposed coffee bag burlap and tusche wash painted on pronto plates. When I’m up for a for-midable challenge, I draw on burlap with oil pastels to create richly textured drawings. I hand stretch repurposed coffee bags over wooden frames. I love drawing on the knobbly surfaces of the burlap — a strenuously time-consuming adventure. It takes hundreds of oil pastel layers to fill each nook and cranny. I overload some areas while leaving other spaces untouched, intentionally exposing the burlap.
“Red Onions at Isabelle Farm” is my largest undertaking, originating from a trip to a local farm. I enjoy shopping at Isabelle Farm to see their beautifully arranged organic produce. A sunlight beam cast through the barn window illuminating a yellow wire basket of red onions. I knew I had to draw this scene to capture the colors. It was an epic two-year creative journey to master this piece.
When I feel emotional, energetic, or explosive, nothing excites me more than working with tusche wash — typically a printmaking medium. Water gives my images a unique appearance like no brushstroke I have seen. In contrast, dry tusche wash is like painting with confectioner’s sugar: it’s powdery and moody behaviors are almost too wild to tame. In my tusche wash paintings I create images of animals and nature that symbolically represent my emotions.
In “Lanzamiento,” I painted a swan representing the Spanish word for release. The graceful swan floats above its colorful and murky reflection, knowing it can launch into flight when ready. I emo-tionally focus on the meaning of a word to “work” on myself. What can I learn to let go? I find cre-ating these artworks to be therapeutic.
My collection of artworks showcase my use of unconventional art materials to explore my inter-ests and emotions. My tusche wash paintings motivate and encourage me to brush up on my own personal mastery while my oil pastel art reminds me to slow down, enjoy the ride, and capture our current Colorado.