About Megan

Hi!

I’m Megan.

I’m the Sole Proprietor of Megan Pawlak Arts in Aurora, Illinois. Some of my talents include crocheting, knitting, designing SVG files for use on home die-cut machines, such as the Cricut Explore Air 2, and watercolor painting. I’m always dabbling in many arts and crafts, but the ones I come back to the most are crocheting and making SVG designs for die-cutting.

A little background on me: I grew up on the south-side of Chicago. My mom was very crafty with us as kids and my dad was a painter and photographer. On my mom’s side, grandma made giant couch-doilies. On dad’s side, grandma painted gorgeous oil-paintings. You can see where I pull my inspiration from here! I do have an older sister, and while we are very close, she chose to become a lawyer. We think very differently, so I often consult her to get a different point of view from my own artsy world-view. I lucked out in the family department!

While learning to crochet happened organically for me as I was growing up, discovering the digital arts started in High School. This was my first introduction to Photoshop and how to pick colors on a screen and have it come out the same in print.

From there, I went to college for Illustration since I always loved to draw bother traditionally and digitally. I earned a BFA in Illustration from Columbia College Chicago. It became obvious to me towards the end of Junior year that I wasn’t in the right place with my art. My experience with college was very disheartening and for a while I gave up the idea that I was meant to be an artist.

My first job was as a “pixel jockey”, editing photos for a technology company that dealt with product photography and data capture. I was there for just over 9 years and in that time I had loved and lost, finally treated my depression, found that crocheting was a great comfort to me, and even found love again (i married him this time!) and found that crochet offered a hither-to-unknown salve for my creative aches. I made my sister a queen-sized topper blanket that she still has to this day – it’s about 6 years old now and every bit as nice as the day I first put it together. However, the job, editing photos all day, monotonously, wasn’t meant to be forever for me. I was let go from that (decently-paying) job and for a while was on unemployment.

I started doing freelance graphic design and eventually landed a job at a small sign shop in Aurora, IL. I learned a lot about my strong suits when I came to creativity in my work life. Sadly, this job, too, upended and I was let go. It’s no longer around, but I’m still using a lot of the knowledge I gained to design SVG files for die-cutting. Freelancing was a saving grace, earning much-needed cash when I was once-again day-jobless. It wasn’t a permanent solution. Too much competition from other countries caused freelance pay to stay relatively low on the open markets, like Freelancer.com. Upstart was better, with a bigger pool of US-only jobs available, but still not my destiny.

Today, in addition to my crafting, I hold a full-time day-job in retail. I’m much happier than ever before and have been able to make strides turning my real talents into a business. It’s not perfect, and I still have a long way to go! It only gets better from here.

Take it easy and remember to smile!