Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Art Projects in the Works

I have so many art projects going that it's starting to make my head spin!  I need to hunker down and actually finish some of these.  Do you start more projects than you finish? It's crazy but I can't seem to help myself.

This is a collage idea I had using some of my old watercolor paintings and my scrap-booking paper.  I've glued them onto a board- now I just need to go get some modge podge to finish it.

paper art collage: growcreativeblog

Thanks to buzzfeed, I've had a ton of custom portrait orders the past few weeks! I don't know what they wrote about my work on that site, but it's sending lots of business my way so I'm happy :)

Custom Watercolor Portrait by Elise Engh: Grow Creative Shop
Custom Watercolor Portrait by Elise Engh: Grow Creative Shop

And in the middle of all of that I decided to start another girl-with-flowers painting.  Still needs some work.
Watercolor Flower Wreath


Thursday, April 21, 2016

Monday, April 18, 2016

Photos of the Week

The upside of moving a lot is that you always have new places to explore and discover!

fishing pond in Utah: growcreative
duck pond in Utah: growcreative

The downside is all the hassle of moving so we're staying put for a long long time.  We'll explore everything around us and I think that will take many years.  A short 20 minute drive from our desert-y home took us to lush green alfalfa fields and large leafy trees.  We don't see so much of that in our neighborhood so it was fun to be surrounded by green!
American Fork, UT alfalfa fields: growcreative
American Fork, UT alfalfa fields: growcreative



Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Free Watercolor Mother's Day Printables

Mother's Day is approaching! 
Time to get cards and flowers in order for the Mom's in your life!

Free Watercolor Mother's Day Printables and Cards- personal, non-commercial use- growcreative
Free Watercolor Mother's Day Printables and Cards- personal, non-commercial use- growcreative

Free Watercolor Mother's Day Printables and Cards- personal, non-commercial use- growcreative

Mother's Day can be a hard day for many people.  The infertile, those who's mothers have passed on, those who didn't have reliable mothers in their lives, or those who feel insecure about their ability to be a mother.  I can't have any more children of my own, so I get it.  But this year, I want to do something different.  Instead of focusing on what I don't have, focus on lifting those who might also be struggling. 

Being there for others is part of mothering after all!

So take advantage of these three free watercolor images to use on cards or just as a nice art printable for someone in your life who is a mother or struggling with the concept of "mom" this time of year.  I firmly believe that every woman is a mother in one form or another.  It's what we were created to be!

To save these watercolor images, just right click on each image below, and click save!
***These are for personal, non-commercial use (that means you cannot sell, trade, or profit from these).***

Every Woman is a Mother free watercolor printable for personal, non-commercial use- growcreative

Mother's Day free watercolor printable for personal, non-commercial use- growcreative

free watercolor flower printable for personal, non-commercial use- growcreative

Monday, April 11, 2016

Photos of the Week

Every once in a while, I'm blessed with good health, and when that happens, we take advantage.  We've learned to steal what happiness we can while we can.  Last week was one of those weeks and it was amazing.  It was a gift and a miracle.  I hiked miles and miles.  I climbed up rocks and down into caves with my little family........ all without getting a migraine (that's the miracle part)! It makes me so happy I could cry!

This is a small part of what we saw last week:

The hoodoos and caves of Goblin Valley

the Goblin's Lair (by far my favorite part)
the Goblin's Lair in Goblin Valley State Park, Utah: growcreative

pretty desert flowers,

The luminous rock walls of Captiol Reef,
Luminous Rock Walls, Capitol Reef National Park: growcreative

and Hickman Bridge (also Capitol Reef)
Hickman Bridge, Capitol Reef National Park: growcreative

I didn't used to like Utah all that much.  But seriously!  I didn't know what I was missing! It has grown on me.  Yes, it's brown, but the desert is amazing.  The rocks in this state are incredible!

What adventures have you been on lately?

Thursday, April 7, 2016

Three More Watercolor Flower Videos

Watercolor flower painting videos: growcreative

And so the watercolor flower videos continue.......................


Carnation:

Two-Tone Rose

Leaves and Stems:

If you missed the first three videos, you can find them HERE.  Happy Watercolor Painting!

Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Three Watercolor Flower Videos

Good Morning! 
The day has arrived to share some watercolor videos! 

Today I'm sharing three different flowers.  In a couple days I'll share the rest.
These are short videos only showing my hands as they paint.  I didn't talk or explain anything in these videos because I think I sound weird on recordings (maybe one day I'll get over that). 
But, I'll offer a few of my flower-painting-tips in this post!


  • These are semi-abstract flowers.  They aren't super detailed or realistic.  I really like this style because it keeps them from being overworked.  They look fresh and fluid. 
  • The key with these flowers is to keep your paint wet.  You don't want harsh lines with layers.  I know this is not the traditional method of applying watercolor paint, but it's a method I've come to love!  
  • Anytime you see a gradient of dark to light within a flower petal, I've first applied a bit of heavy pigment, then washed out my brush a bit, swiped it on my handy paper towel to get some water off, and then gone back and let spread out some of the previously applied pigment.  Or I just let the lighter, more watery paint mix with the heavier darker paint.  If I find that one area needs a little more darkening, I add that extra paint on top while still wet so that it blends fluidly. This is probably the opposite of what you've been taught on how to watercolor, but it still works. 
  • It's all about water and pigment control.  Too much paint on your brush can leave too much on your paper.  Too much water on your brush can thin the paint out and leave your painting looking pale.  Keep lots of paper towels with you to blot your brush as needed. 
  • It may take a bit of practice to get this method down.  It took me a few years to really loosen up my painting style, but don't be discouraged by that! That's why I'm posting these videos.  These would have helped me enormously when I started out.  I had to figure this out the old fashioned way, trial-and-error. 

Anemone:


Rose:


Chrysanthemum:

Let me know what you think about these videos and if you give these flowers a try!

Monday, April 4, 2016

Photos of the Week

lone tree on the hill- photo of saratoga springs utah hills

These are the hills by my house.  Most of the time I've lived here, they have been brown.  But, if you catch them in the right light with the right clouds after a good rain, they can be full of color and beauty!

saratoga springs hills, Utah: growcreativeblog
saratoga springs hills, Utah: growcreativeblog
sagebrush by growcreativeblog
sagebrush by growcreativeblog
saratoga springs hills, Utah: growcreativeblog

I'm so glad for spring and all the good things it brings:  green things, dramatic rain clouds, clear air, and most of all hope.