A couple of years ago I interviewed Megan Jean Morris for the first time when she was on Ink Master. I had an "affiliation" with Megan Jean, because she was sponsored by PainfulPleasures; I wanted to like her for that reason alone. We had a great conversation and stayed in touch after the interview. My wife and I both wish Megan Jean lived near us. She's not only an incredibly talented artist, she's cool as hell as a person, too. No drama. No bullshit. Super down to earth and kind. We spoke about doing a different kind of interview.
Dan Lorenzo: The other night we were speaking and you told me a lot of famous artists die broke. Why do you think that is?
Megan Jean Morris: Yeah, a lot of famous artists die broke. Big names. People who have made iconic artwork that is used to advertise for products and clothing... it's always shocking when your hear someone so successful is broke. I guess artists aren't often business minded people. Or maybe we are passionate, and passion kinda calls for instant gratification as opposed to planning ahead. Maybe most of us don't plan on making it to old age. Anyway, making art and getting paid for it is a time-for-money trade. As a self-employed artist, we don't automatically have retirement funds or 401K's and stuff, so yeah... a lot of successful artists die broke.
What made you take an interest in real estate?
Hmmm... well, my brother got sick and needed a place to live a few years back. And at the same time I got divorced and I was in airports all the time, because I was always traveling to a tattoo show somewhere. Those airport bookstores got me, and I was reading a bunch of self-help shit... kinda made me feel better. As I felt better I started reading more motivational books and those led to books about success — this is where I noticed many books were mentioning real estate. These books lead eventually to straight up wealth building books where real estate is considered a "corner stone" of wealth building. So I started thinking about getting a little multi-unit building in the town where my brother lives and he could take one of the apartments, but also manage the building for me. Then I started attending courses and stuff to get more education about investing in real estate.
I love to travel and I despise the winters, but I can't bring myself to sell my home in NJ. You recently moved from Connecticut to Las Vegas. Do you miss the east coast?
Yeah, I miss the seasons, especially around the holidays. And I really miss my best friends and family. But, I love the West. The colors are different and there's so much space. Here in Vegas, I look out and can see for miles and miles all around. On the edge of my view are big jagged mountains and at sunset or sunrise the colors are exotic to me! I love it! I just breathe deep and easy here.
A lot of former Ink Master contestants go back to Ink Master. Would you go back on Ink Master?
Nope. Ink Master is a waste of time for me at this point. It's no place to be an artist. It's good for people who want to make TV though. And making TV is fun, but they barely pay you to be there so I can't afford that.
What has to happen for my friend Megan Jean to become 100% happy and fulfilled?
Well... Buddha would say nothing has to happen for me to be, I just have to be. Happy and fulfilled is a feeling and we can choose our feelings. These days I honestly feel very at peace and content. Happiness comes and goes, but I have ideas of stuff I'd like to have in my life. I still want to have a child and feel what it's like to have a family. I'd like to be in a relationship where I feel loved and seen and appreciated everyday.
Keep up with Megan Jean Morris on IG @MeganJeanMorris