Monday, October 30, 2017

New website!

I have upgraded to a more professional site, complete with online registration. Please visit for more information!

Thursday, August 24, 2017

Art Supplies for ages 5-12

Since I require students to purchase the majority of their own supplies for my classes, I thought it might be a good idea to provide a list of items I suggest using. These are merely my suggestion, based on my own experiences, you are welcome to use whatever brand or type you wish. That being said, your child will likely have an easier time making lasting art using higher quality supplies.

Here are my suggestions for ages 5-12, however older children may wish to have supplies from my teen list (which will be a separate post). Take a look, and see what floats your boat. :)

There is a large range of watercolors available for students to use. I like the Winsor-Newton travel boxes for kids, especially if they are just learning the medium. They are easy to transport, and not too messy. This one is a great deal, and works quite nicely.

If your kids want to use tube watercolors, Winsor-Newton is also a good way to go. This is a great beginner set. Daniel Smith is another wonderful watercolor company, and the bonus is they are local! Their paints are more expensive than Winsor-Newton, but they are higher quality (I believe!) Here is a link to a set of tube paints available on Amazon, but they have two local store fronts as well.

If you decide to go the tube watercolor route, you will also need a palette. Here's a great one that won't require buying pans to fill. It just has empty wells and a mixing area.

Watercolor brushes are a confusing bunch. There are some expensive, fancy brands I use for my own art, but for kids just learning you certainly do not need to break the bank. I suggest looking for brushes that are not generic Michaels brand (or similar). Those do not last or survive well. Searching Amazon may overwhelm you at this point, so here is an example of a set that may work for you. If you find yourself in an art store such as Daniel Smith of the University Bookstore, an employee can point you to some affordable options as well.

Another watercolor brush option are water brushes. I haven't used them very often, but I know several people that swear by them, especially when used as a travel brush. Pentel makes a good set.

For watercolor and media paper, there are several types. For kids at this age, it's not important whether you choose hot or cold press paper, really. And brand isn't as important either. That being said, I suggest a big pad of Strathmore paper. These are easy to find, and they're a pretty good beginner's brand. A larger size like 11x15 with tape edged pages is best, as this will allow for a lot of work space as well as easy removal from the book. For mixed media paper, I suggest this one.

For the younger kids, I would like them to bring their own colored markers for projects. As I'm sure all parents are aware, markers do not survive well when kids share them with others. Sharing is wonderful, but not when we want something to last awhile. For markers, I like these Pentel ones. They are great for line drawing and careful coloring.

Pentel also makes a good oil pastel set. I'd check this one out.

I suggest older kids use mechanical drawing pencils so that they always have a sharp point. Any brand will do for these, but I like this one in particular.

Older kids will also be doing some work in a sketchbook. Stillman and Bern make my favorite ones. Here is one I really like, but feel free to do your own research and find a similar size to this one. And please ensure it is mixed media paper as we will be doing more than just drawing in these books.

Older kids will also be practicing drawing using pens. Younger kids will have Sharpies provided for them. For the older kids, I love Micron drawing pens. They are truly waterproof (so you can immediately paint over them!) and have great line quality. Here is a set that is great for beginners.

And lastly, older students will need a colored pencil set. Any size will do, but as an example, here is a smaller set that is great.

Have fun window shopping!

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Homeschool classes

Just an FYI that if there is enough interest, then I may be able to open a homeschool class on Tuesday afternoons rather than my current Thursday slot offering. Please let me know if this is of interest!

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Travel Sketching Therapy

Butterfly visitor
This past week my family and I went on a long drive across the state to stay in the mountains of Idaho. I of course brought my watercolor sketching materials, and in the past may have completely ignored them, but this time I made an effort to sketch or paint every day. While my kids swam in the pool - I sketched, while I was on the beach - I sketched, while watching TV - I sketched. And I got some great results! It was surprisingly relaxing too. Often in the past I felt like I had an obligation to make art, and I felt guilty if I didn't do it. Ever since taking regular classes again and allowing myself the freedom to make mistakes and learn from them, making art has become easier and fun again!

The promise of new beginnings

Brush selection
Poolside relaxation

Sketchbook pages:

Friday, July 28, 2017

Now registering

I'm very excited to announce that I've opened registration for my upcoming classes, which you can find here. Please email me or contact me through my Facebook page for more information.

I'm looking forward to beginning this journey!

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

New Art School!

Well, it's official! I will begin offering art classes for children of all ages in September 2017. All classes will take place at Cloud 9 Art School in Bothell, WA. I'm really pleased and excited to get started working with such a wonderful group of artists. I have been working diligently on lesson plans and can't wait to begin interacting with some new young artists! Registration for my classes has begun! For information, please visit my classes page, or email me. I have also set up an Instagram and a Facebook page, please go take a look and/or follow! Also please share my information with anyone you know who may be interested.

Planning, planning!

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

In the works...

As you may have noticed, I've changed things up a little with my page here. The name has changed (and may not stay this way either!), and I've edited a few things here and there to reflect that. Meanwhile I've been trying to find as much time as I can this summer to practice my own art. The watercolor class I was taking is now concluded for the season, and I'm on my own. I have a few projects up my sleeve, mainly this one. A few weekends ago my husband and I visited San Juan Island, and as per usual I was drawn to the beautiful orca whales that frequent the waters there. After a close encounter with a small pod, I came home inspired. I've been working on this piece of the orcas we met on our trip. It's a work in progress, and is definitely taking its time to fully develop.

First draft painting of the T2C transient pod

I've also been trying very hard to bring my little scribbler sketchbook with me everywhere. It's a habit I'm working to ingrain. I took it with us this past weekend as we visited the terracotta warriors exhibit at the Pacific Science Center. I was determined to sketch a warrior...and I did!

Kneeling archer

Meanwhile I'm also working on developing the lessons portion of this website. Stay tuned for more on that soon, but in the meantime, here's a look at my reading stack! Thank goodness for our public library system!

Reading stack
Stay cool out there!

Thursday, June 15, 2017


Yep! This is little Sarah!
Ever since I was a wee one, I loved to scribble. As I grew, this became painting, drawing, coloring, art, art, art. Just ask my parents. They still have boxes worth of my childhood art. I've also always been strongly drawn to animals. As a child, I would spend my time on bikes with my friends, riding through the neighborhood pretending we were riding horses, or jaunt down to the forest and hunt for frogs. I would beg my parents to take us to the pet store, and eventually it all paid off, as over the course of my childhood we had cats, a goat, fish, an iguana, gerbils, rabbits, rats, mice, parakeets, zebra finches, a newt (Sir Isaac Newton!), and always a collection of bugs or other critters from the backyard in a random assortment of empty pickle and jelly jars. Of course, being a young artist and an animal lover, I would often combine these interests. Drawing animals, or sketching the outdoors.

Today I have a rich background of experiences to draw upon. I have a B.A. in Art History, and an M.A. in Zoology, with a focus on connecting children to nature through arts-based methods. This has all led to this point. I hope you will join me as I explore this artistic journey! I finally decided to jump on the bandwagon and provide a place to arrange and share my art. I also have some fun things in the works for the future, but I can't quite share those yet. Stay tuned!