Meagan De Bono is a Wonder Woman!
We first came across Meagan's playful and calming illustration style through her drawing of yoga poses. But after getting in touch we soon discovered there was a lot more to Meagan than her illustrations revealed. Having moved to Tasmania to establish a business with her husband crafting organic Miso (yes, the Japanese condiment), while also working for the Navy and illustrating for clients in her spare time! And just to prove that there wasn't anything she couldn't do, because Meagan is based in Tasmania, she offered to take her own photos for this article. See more of Meagan's work here.
You are an illustrator, photographer and Yogi living in Tasmania. Tell us a little about your life and work? How long have you been freelancing for? What does a usual day look like for you?
My path into freelancing and creative work is fairly unconventional, I have actually spent the last ten years in the Navy as a Logistics Officer and still work there, but it doesn't allow for me to be creative in the way I want to be. To balance out that I’m freelancing in my after hours and on weekends. Life outside of work involves my husband, our pooch (Pimm), good coffee and exploring new places.
I started taking on freelance projects last year after I completed a Design Course. I started the course not really sure where I wanted it to take me and but have found a love for illustration. I’ve also had a thing for photography since high school and after attending Brooke Holm’s 101 photography course a few years back have rediscovered my love of image creating.
My usual days have a few essential elements, early morning exercise, coffee and walking/playing with Pimm. Over coffee is when I look at my to do list for the day and from there it could be working on Meru Food’s design/admin needs or focusing on freelance client work. I always try to set aside time a couple of days a week to just do my own thing which could be from illustrating to getting my paints out.
Describe your work environment. How does the space / location influence you?
I like to work on my illustrations and client projects in my home studio surrounded by my plants, favourite books and graphic design/illustrations I’ve collected; currently that is Megan Hess’ card range, the Australian Ballet's program book and Go-To skincare packaging - I’m always collecting gorgeous printed things. If I’m researching for a project or catching up on blogs that I find offer really stellar freelance/design advice I try to do that out of the studio at a cafe or in the sunshine. I’m also a huge fan of public libraries so whenever I have writing or courses to do I head to my local library.
You have created a beautiful series inspired by Yoga poses. Tell us about your own yoga practice - in what ways does it inform your creative process?
I’ve been incorporating yoga into my morning routine a few days a week for the past 3 years. On those mornings I do yoga I definitely notice the changes in my mind and body that yoga is well known for - for me it is improved posture, a stronger core and clearer thinking. I also roll out my mat whenever I’m feeling a little too stressed or distracted - stopping for a moment does wonders to help you recenter.
Creatively, practising yoga allows me to slow down and be mindful of my surroundings and thoughts. This translates into space for me to have new ideas and allows me to see different ways to approach creative projects.
Tell us 3 things you always say YES to.
Going to the cinema, Gift wrapping, Breakfast dates.
What does being radical mean to you?
Fearlessly believing in yourself and working hard to make a life for yourself you love.
Photos by Meagan De Bono