The sketchy and inconsistent blog of Bethie Engstrom...

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Ivy and Nala

Project for a friend! Unfortunately I'm the type of person that gets hung up on little things and trends to forget about my 'first love', watercolors. With a brush in my hand, the window open to the surprisingly warm Seattle weather, and all my mix mediums in front of me, I was so relaxed and ''in my element''. I haven't felt that way in a long time, it seems to always be tense when I 'get down' to work on drawing. Do you ever feel like you take more self-doubt or crap from yourself more than anything else? I feel like I'm my biggest ball and chain. And critic. Oh the life of working alone. ;)

What's your worst 'enemy in the studio?

And what helps you?
Let's share because we are a community of fellow artist of all different backgrounds and styles. We can take advantage of it!

Much love and blessings!

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Friday, April 4, 2014


Watercolors and ink. Had a lot of fun with this, it's pretty small though, about 3x3.

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Traits and ageing and learning

One of the the worst things that I do to myself, is that if I don't complete, or at least approve of something I've put down in an appropriate short period of time, I begin to believe that I don't have what it takes to be an artist. This is one of those raw and very tender aspects of myself that I do. Not. Like. We all have our issues (right? 0.0). I tend to be on the side of can't get out of my head... What's the actual expression?? Letting my thoughts get ahead of my actions, or messing up things (in everyday life as well) because I'm thinking about it too much.

That said, I've always never really wanted to draw out aging, because I could never get it right it seemed. But spending a couple of hours on Monday, glued to my chair, and many attempts later, I got this woman. And she isn't perfect (I'm still convinced the eyes need more work), but I'm a semi perfectionist, so putting this up doesn't absolutely freak me out.

Learn from mistakes, get feedback, don't trash anything you draw. How else will we learn?

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Clearer post

Here is a more clear picture from a post, a couple back.

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Flooring art!

My family and I happen to be on a month long media fast (meaning not going into any media type site online, Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, blogs... etc.) as you read this, it's a way of re-starting almost. And also it's giving us a better understanding of the good and sometimes not so good in any one of those non-physical interactions areas. Overall, it's great! But I'm sure I'm going to want to be done by the time this gets posted. I've scheduled a couple of posts, mostly for myself as I try not to overload on media the night before I sign out of everything. :)

Today I bring you this painting, that I did on the sub flooring in my new room. I hope no one ever takes this new flooring out (blood and tears, as is typical with any home renovations;) to find this little heroine, but if they do they will also find a large flower with a seven year olds name proudly painted by herself, and a tree with a potato shaped man under it, made by a little five year old boy.  I wonder if it'll get even a glance, or maybe it'll get more? I kind of hope I never know:) But here it is, it's one little moment, last moment, before being completely covered.

Art is funny sometimes...

Thursday, February 13, 2014

just a little something

Woot! Another post!

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

late night sketching

This means something to me, but any one who sees it sees something different. A different perspective is amazing. I love hearing what people see or "feel" about sketches. What do you see?

Monday, January 13, 2014

I have a good excuse...

My best friend in all the world is getting married (we're so close, we can out of the same human, me, just fifteen months after!) soon and getting everything figured out and still working and trying to have somewhat of a life is kind of distracting, so, to make myself feel better (and hopefully it can give you a little warmness in your heart as well), here are some pictures of my families kittens:)

Enjoy and have a great rest of your day!

Monday, January 6, 2014

drawing from thought vs. drawing from a model

 Sketching out these hands was really just that, but than that 'thing' happened... You know, when a thought suddenly becomes an idea. Weird I know. Wish it would happen more often. :P
But than as I kept trying to give the piece a little more dramatics and tension - I just couldn't put it down, simply for the fact that trying to just look at my hands awkwardly clasped infront of me, it's pretty much impossible to get that "experience" unless I've made serious note of a similar scene already. That's when actual other human beings become real good handy (ha! Don't judge me) subjects. Two football players that happen to be my live in brothers do very well.
Soon I hope to use this photo (plus the others) to make something out of that little seed of thought.

Sunday, January 5, 2014

just a tiny little something...

(From the summer actually, but it meant a lot to me then, so it still has a 'place in my heart')

Saturday, January 4, 2014

adorable couples

There are SO many people in my life either in engagements or just married. It is just the season, and it's so exciting, but, with a wedding to be happening in the next few weeks, and the bride is my sister... I'm also freaking out a little bit. ;)
This was a card cover that I had the joy of sending up to Canada for a friends recent wedding day.
Happy Saturday to you!

Friday, January 3, 2014

chocolate! why did it have to be chocolate!?

Little 'ums. Love them forever!

On a more dramatic note, I think I'm allergic/have an intolerance for. … dum-dum-duuuum! ...chocolate.

My life is over.

Keep your children and chocolate near to you! And eat unsparingly!

... The chocolate. Do not, i repeat, do NOT eat children.

Thursday, January 2, 2014

rough sketch

I actually did this a couple of days ago (with just the materials they give to the younger kids to stay quiet during the service), on Sunday during a really amazing sermon about being "tough"... Has nothing to do with it, but oh well!
You should search people who make a hobby of sketching/illustrating sermons, I can't remember this certain guy right now (brain all fuzzy for wanting to sleep), but it is really amazing to look at, and inspiring for me. That ability to right away translate what you are hearing onto paper in the form that anyone, no matter if there is a language barrier, can start to understand what that person speaking could have been taking about.

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

posting pieces and bits and bobs from me

I cannot promise every day, nor that the pictures will be anything near quality, not even going to try to prod high quality photos with a very long poll, but, I can promise you'll see some of me, my thoughts or wounderings put into picture form. :)
I'm hoping that by doing this I will feel less afraid of being afraid of my creativity. And that my creativity, the little things that come from my head, by the use of my hands, will start to get used to not being shut away in the dark, safe prisons of a sketchbook.
Thank you for being here, reading this.