I’ve been an artist for as long as I can remember.
I spent my childhood living outside city limits on several acres of land in Oregon. My dad was an animal enthusiast and taught me to appreciate the wonders of the natural world. I grew up surrounded by the beauty of nature and the companionship of furry friends.
As I grew, so did my creativity and curiosity. I excelled at art projects in school, I began private watercolor painting lessons at 11, and experimented with different mediums. In high school I had a brilliant art teacher, Mrs. Heintzman, who took extra time to mentor and encourage me in my projects. I was honored to receive the “Art Student of the Year” award from her two years in a row. I took some art classes at community college after high school.
Under Master Painter Susan Bourdet, and alongside my sweet grandmother (who is also a professional watercolor artist and teacher), I learned how to predict the uncontrollable and beautiful aspects of watercolor; where to manipulate and where to allow the paint to do it’s own work. Susan's direction has been invaluable to my knowledge and progression as an artist.
I believe that anyone with passion and drive can be an artist, regardless of background or education.
I find so much joy in painting animals, capturing their spirit and personality. I started painting portraits of pets for my friends and family, and then began getting a lot of requests, so I started taking commissions in my hometown, just on a word-of-mouth basis. That evolved into quicker, more expressive Splash + Ink watercolor portraits, using bright colors and loose pen lines to capture an animal's character and charm.
In 2015 our family relocated to Stuttgart, Germany for three years. It was a wonderful and wild ride, living and traveling in Europe was such a fabulous adventure and has opened my eyes as an artist. We also spent a year in Hawaii, near Honolulu. We finally came back home to Oregon, and I'm diving in to teaching more Wine and Watercolor events, as well as children's classes in partnership with several local businesses. I am so thrilled to share my love of watercolor with people of all ages and walks of life.
"Elisa commissioned the most beautiful water color painting of my brother and sister-in-law at their wedding as a gift to them from me. The amount of detail and care she put into it was immaculate and the painting is just breath taking. She communicated every step of the way, had absolutely fair pricing for a one of a kind piece, and even framed it before delivery. I have nothing but wonderful things to say about her work. She truly is a talented artist and I plan to commission more pieces with her in the future. Thank you sooo much Elisa for all of your hard work, my brother and sister absolutely adores their new painting, it is the centerpiece of their home" - Kaila, August 2022
"We got the portrait and the amazingly sweet card today, and we just have to thank you from the bottom of our hearts, the portrait is amazing and so incredibly realistic, we both cried when we saw it. Thank you so, so much for capturing one of our family members so well, your talent and heart is obvious in your art. Thank you again." - Daniel, July 2022
"I am absolutely blown away by your incredible painting. I opened it last night and honestly cried seeing how well and realistically you captured our sweet Bella. The painting is stunning. Your attention to detail is phenomenal! You were even able to capture the intensity of the focus in her eyes. I am beyond grateful to have this piece of her to keep forever. I don't think I can thank you enough! I can't wait to see my husband's reaction when he opens it!
Thank you again! I will forever refer anyone looking for a pet portrait to you! Your paintings are the best around!" - Jessica, November 2021
Salem, Oregon, United States
Try out watercolor painting in a friendly atmosphere with a glass of wine in hand on March 25th at Chemeketa Cellars in Salem.