Best of 2015

Well, it didn't seem to me like I did all that much with my blog in 2015.  I kinda had my hands full with surgeries, building a house, and moving.  

But, you know what? I still did A LOT of creative stuff this past year.  Mostly watercolors and photography! I think it kept me from going insane!

watercolor paintings and tuturials

crochet and crafts

Aztec Painted Leaves

free watercolor printables

Valentine's Printables
(please don't sell these.. thanks)

Cool Tape Creations

Cool Tape Creations

We got tape for Christmas................. lots and lots of cool tape!

Cool Tape Creations

Draw a shape on a paper, cover it with tape and cut it out. It's amazing what you can create.  Flowers, trees, triangles, and hearts!

Cool Tape Creations

You can even make a cyclops-robot-guy!

Cool Tape Creations

Blue & Gold Wildflowers

It's winter, but I still have flowers on the brain.......

Original Watercolor Wildflowers in Blue and Gold by Elise Engh: growcreative

I discovered this awesome color palette with this painting kind of by accident.  It's hard to describe how I choose colors for my paintings, except to say that lots of the time they are totally arbitrary.  I wasn't looking at blue and gold flowers as I painted this, I just felt like going with cool colors so this is what happened!

Original Watercolor Wildflowers in Blue and Gold by Elise Engh: growcreative
Original Watercolor Wildflowers in Blue and Gold by Elise Engh: growcreative

Snowflake Art Tutorial

DIY Watercolor Snowflake Kids Art Project

My son is fortunate to have art class at his new school. I would have been in heaven if my elementary school offered art classes when I was a kid! I was so excited when my son came home with a cool watercolor snowflake project that we had to replicate at home together.  So, please note, I didn't invent this idea.  I'm just sharing the process.  Enjoy!

Snowflake Art Tutorial

watercolor paper
white crayon
watercolor paints
paint brushes

Step 1:  Use the white crayon to draw snowflakes on the watercolor paper.  It's hard to see what you are drawing but you can check your work by holding your paper next to the window. 

If you are stuck as to how to draw the snowflake shapes, think pinwheels or flowers.  It's easiest to start from a central point and draw lines coming out from the center.

Step 2:  Paint watercolors in all kinds of pretty colors over the crayon on the paper.  The wax from the crayon resists the watercolor- magically exposing the snowflakes you drew! This part is fun to watch!

Step 3: While the paint is still wet, sprinkle salt on the painting and let it dry.  This creates some fun spots and texture, plus leave a slight amount of glitter behind.  Bigger salts like Epsom salt, leave bigger more noticeable spots, but you can use table salt too.  

Once the paint is dry, brush the salt off and you're done.

Watercolor Snowflake Art: growcreative

Photos of the Week

I woke up Friday to snow covered mountains and a bright blue sky.  It was breathtaking.

snow covered mountains: grow creative
snow covered mountains: grow creative
snow covered mountains: grow creative
frozen leaf: grow creative

In the winter I tend to become a bit of a hermit, never leaving my house except when absolutely necessary- like for grocery shopping (my least favorite chore).  I have to kind of kick myself out of the house and get outdoors no matter the weather- it's easier when it's sunny though :)

Custom Watercolors

Commissions are always good and it's more fun when people ask me to paint a portrait for them! 
These cute couples' portraits will make some awesome Christmas gifts this year :)

easy watercolor portraits by Elise Engh: GrowCreative

If you want to try your hand at one of these, I have an Easy Watercolor Portrait Tutorial that you can try.  Watercolors take some practice, but aren't as intimidating as they are cracked up to be.  Just give it a try!

And here's a fun custom elephant painting I just finished yesterday.......
I keep discovering new ways to combine elephants and hearts

watercolor elephants