Eileen McKenna Art & Design

Watercolor Art | Creative Inspiration to help you be creative on a regular basis


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The Dogwoods are blooming!

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After my run today I had to take some shots of the Dogwoods. The two Dogwoods, on either side of our front walk, have sentimental value to me. They were in bloom the first time we looked at our future home. We posed in front of one of the Dogwoods when we brought our daughter home from the hospital. The house itself has changed – expanded to fit our family that also includes two sons. But the Dogwoods have remained and every time they bloom, I’m reminded of the early days and that this is home.


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Spring Flowers in Washington, D.C.

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I’ve been eagerly awaiting the time when our garden comes back to life. When I can find beautiful flowers to paint in my own backyard. Last week we took the kids to Washington, D.C. We were lucky enough to catch the Cherry Blossoms in bloom. We took in many of the sites – monuments and museums. We toured the Capitol building and the Library of Congress, which is beautiful inside. It’s like the Sistine Chapel!

Me in front of the U.S. Supreme Court. 
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The inside of the Library of Congress.

One of my favorite parts of the trip was a quick visit to the U.S. Botanic Garden. The flowers were beautiful! I couldn’t believe the colors and patterns orchids come in. There is even a cool exhibit on roots. I was so happy to get back home and back to painting! If you follow me on Instagram, you know I’ve already started painting some of these beautiful flowers.

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Gardening Pattern

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Now that the snow has melted in the backyard, I have gardening on my mind. And painting outside! I can’t wait to have inspiration growing in the garden! My husband likes to call gardening “digging in the dirt.”

This gardening pattern, my March pattern, is the first I’ve painted in watercolor. The other two patterns (art/January and love/February) were painted in Photoshop. I limited the number of colors I used, so the items would be uniform. I scanned the illustrations and arranged them in Photoshop.
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After I liked how the elements were arranged, I created a frame and duplicated the entire group several times. First, I checked how the items repeated left and right.
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Then I checked how the elements repeated top and bottom. I had to make some adjustements when things overlapped.
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I am happy with how it came out. It’s my favorite pattern so far. It’s amazing to see sketches turned into a pattern and looking so finished. Happy Spring! 🙂


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Color!

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It may be shades of white and brown in my garden but inside there is color! The Burpee (seed, plant, and flower) catalog arrived. I couldn’t be happier using every color in my palette to play in my sketchbook. There is something very freeing, for me, when I work in my sketchbook. The pressure is off! And my new sketchbook is a heavier weight paper, so it’s better for painting with watercolor.

I’m especially proud of my Zinnia. 🙂

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Watercolor Flowers – Happy Spring!

Lately, I can’t stop painting flowers. I think I’m just very happy Spring is here! Before flowers, I was painting fruit. lol! In the past I was intimidated by flowers. Now, I am getting into it. My first (recent) attempts were more graphic, less realistic.

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Today, I worked hard to get the flower to look like the actual flower. I’ve been loving working in watercolor again!

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