my creative resolution

Painting, Illustration, Surface Design, and Animation


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Train Set under the Christmas Tree

img_1113Day 7 of the Christmas countdown. The train under the Christmas tree has become a tradition in our house. We have two Lionel train sets, one that I gave my husband, when the kids were babies, and one that Grandpa gave the kids. The illustration above is based on a picture of my youngest when he was two or three and was mesmerized by the train.

Marions day 7 drawing of a train is adorable. See it here.

Want to join in? All mediums are welcome. Use the tag “adventmcr” when posting.

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Nutcracker painting

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Day 6 in the Christmas countdown. I was excited about this prompt because so far this Christmas season, for me, has been all about the Nutcracker. I had my first enamel pin made, based on an illustration from my Nutcracker pattern design. That little pin has inspired me to learn about the history of the Nutcracker, and explore other unique Nutcracker products. And when a friend mentioned a local college was putting on a production of the Nutcracker, I took the family (with pins on of course).

My Nutcracker pin:

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My nutcracker pattern. Available as gift wrap, fabric, and wallpaper through Spoonflower.
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If you’d like to join me in the creative Christmas countdown here are the prompts. All mediums are welcome! Tag “adventmcr ” when posting. Marion has been drawing with me. See her nutcracker here. See Moxiefitblues on Instagram here. She even included the nuts!

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Christmas Stockings

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Day 5 in the Christmas countdown. We actually don’t hang our stockings on the mantle. Before we had a fireplace, we hung them on the banister. The first year with the new fireplace I was so excited to hang them from the mantle. The stocking holders were very heavy and when one of the kids – they were all little at the time – pulled on it, it fell and made a huge divot in the wood floor. I was glad it didn’t hit him in the head. So the stockings went back to the banister. The stairs were looking pretty empty anyway.

Since my prompt was stockings – I wish I had made them more ornate. I spent most of my time on the areas around them. Something for me to think about with the other prompts.

Marion’s day 5 Christmas drawing can be seen here. I’m really enjoying how different our approaches to the same prompts are. Her drawing is usually up before mine but I resist the urge to peek until I am done!

It’s not too late to join in on the creative Christmas countdown. All mediums are welcome. Tag “adventmcr” when posting, so we can all see!

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Christmas Ornament

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Day 4 in my creative countdown to Christmas. Last month when I was painting in watercolor everyday, following the World Watercolor Group’s November prompts, I focused on adding shadows. I tried to not always use black. Instead I mixed the compliment of the color with the color of the object. As the month went along the “darks” were always on my mind while painting.

One of the things I admire about Charlie of doodlewash and founder of World Watercolor Group, are his highlights. So many of his objects look so shiny. I asked him for advice on achieving this. He said,

it’s all about pushing the contrast. I sketch every little shape I see in the reflections and then paint them, pushing the darks as much as possible to make the whites seem whiter. Any chance to put nearly black next to white also increases the contrast. With glass you have to be a little subtler or it will start to look like metal, but if you’re painting metal…just go for it! The more contrast the better! And many of the shapes are not intuitive…draw exactly what you see, not what you’d expect it to be.”

I think it is really good advice, but putting into practice with my ornament was easier said than done! The ornament was reflecting everything in the room. But I’ll be thinking about the darks and the lights as I work this month.

Jill wrote a poem about how special ornaments are. I totally agree. As I unwrap each ornament I remember who it is from or what special interest or time in our lives for me, my husband, or one of the kids it represents, or a family trip we took.

Marion’s scandinavian felted ornaments are so precious. The stitching is drawn so well, the ornaments look real!

On Instagram moxiefitblues posted a beautiful box of ornaments. See them here.

Here’s my prompt list is you’d like to draw/paint along. Tag your posts  #adventmcr.

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Christmas cookies

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It’s the most wonderful time of the year, but boy is there a lot to do. I wasn’t able to finish painting my cookies (day 3 of my Christmas countdown) yesterday because the day was filled with Christmas preparations – buying a wreath and tree and other outdoor decorations, decorating inside, shopping for gifts, and seeing the Nutcracker at a local college.

I was very excited to see the Nutcracker as I’ve just designed my first pin – a Nutcracker – and I didn’t remember that much of the story. The production was a blend of amateurs and professionals and I really enjoyed it.

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Interested in buying a pin? Click here to purchase through PayPal (U.S. only). I appreciate the support!

Today’s prompt is ornaments which is perfect because today we will be decorating our tree. Want to paint/draw along with me? Here is my prompt list. All mediums are welcome! Use #adventmcr when posting.

Marion is doing a great job, see her adorable day 3 drawing here. On Instagram see moxiemisfitblues’ posts here. Jill Kuhn created mixed media sugar cookie sprinkles.

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Wreath with a polar bear

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…or is it a polar bear with a wreath? 😂 Day 2 Christmas countdown.

Here is the creative prompt list if you’d like to join in. All mediums are welcome! Use hashtag #adventmcr when posting.

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Marion is following along – see her day 2 drawing here.


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30 Days of Food In Watercolor

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Pomegranates – Day 30. Thank you to Charlie of World Watercolor Group for the food November prompts. I didn’t think about it when I started, but painting food everyday is out of my comfort zone. I would never have painted a turkey or a plate of mushrooms or leeks! But I was often happy with my results. It’s good to have a push in a different direction sometimes.

Here are my favorites from the month:

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I’m excited to really get into the spirit of Christmas and created my own prompt list to follow in December. Everyone and all mediums are welcome to join in. Use the hashtag #adventmcr when posting.

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Of course Charlie is inspiring everyone with a December list of prompts. Click here to see it. I’ll definitely be painting a Christmas sweater from his list!

BTW if you haven’t read it, I had the pleasure of interviewing Charlie, founder of the World Watercolor Group. You can read the interview here.


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Creative prompts Advent Calendar

img_1014I’ve been on a roll the last 2 months creating everyday. In October I participated in InkTober, drawing in ink in my sketchbook. By the end of October I was adding watercolor to my sketches. This month I followed the World Watercolor Group’s November prompts which were all food. I was so happy to be back working in watercolor. Other than fruit, I don’t really paint food so it was out of my comfort zone. I appreciated the push because other than my pathetic brussel sprouts, I was really happy with many of my paintings.

For December, I’m getting into the spirit of Christmas! I created this prompt list for myself, but welcome anyone who wants to join in! All mediums are welcome! Let me know if you do and tag your work #adventmcr so I can see. I’m on Instagram too @eileenmckenna.

I’ve done holiday countdowns before – Valentine’s Day (twice) and St. Patrick’s Day. The challenge with those was always what to paint. This time I’ve created a prompt list to follow. I’m a little nervous about committing to creating everyday in the busiest month of the year, but I know overall I won’t regret it. In both October and November challenging myself has led to some pieces I’m really proud of.

My watercolor cherry pie

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A fall ink illustration

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