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Elizabeth Higgins takes her passion to historic Court Plaza building in Hillsboro.

COURTESY PHOTO - Artist Elizabeth Higgins's new studio is located at 205 E. Main St. in Hillsboro, in the Court Plaza building.Pack up the paints and start on a fresh canvas. Artist Elizabeth Higgins welcomes community members to her new studio and art classroom located in the Court Plaza building at 205 E. Main St. in Hillsboro.

Creative Discovery with Elizabeth M. Higgins offers art classes for youth and adults, specializing in watercolor painting.

"Painting has always been such a positive experince for me, and I love sharing that with others," Higgins said. "In a nutshell, I like to focus on process and experience — letting everyone in class get in touch with their own creative spirit."

She previously taught at the Walter's Cultural Arts Center for many years, as well as other local organizations. Higgins also is an active member of the Catherine Bede Gallery.

Higgins has lived in Hillsboro for 20 years and says she's excited to bring her passion for art to the historic downtown area. The move puts her in what was once the honeymoon suite of an 1880s-built hotel and saloon.

"I had a studio in (Portland) but I've been waiting years to find a place like this," Higgins said. "There's much more space here, and it feels so good — so right — being in downtown Hillsboro."

With a large, new space to work in, Higgins is looking forward to teaching others the joys of watercolor painting. The artist offers a variety of classes, as well as private lessons with more individualized instruction — something she says she's thrilled to expand upon in her new place.

Class members will learn the foundations of watercolor through a series of lessons on painting techniques, color mixing, composition, value, shading and texture.

COURTESY PHOTO - Higgins offers both youth and adult watercolor painting classes where attendees can learn the basics or hone their skills on more complex projects.  "For me, and I think a lot of my students, there's something both calming and uncontrolled about watercolor," Higgins said. "Not everything will look perfect, but when we let go and give in to that creative fluidity, something more valuable comes out of our work."

Those looking to pick up a brush and explore their creativity with Higgins can find out more about classes, individualized workshops and how to purchase artwork on her website at elizabethmhiggins.com.

"I started exploring watercolor in 2010 after rediscovering art and immediately knew I'd never want to stop," Higgins said. "After so many years, to have landed here in this studio, I just keep thinking 'I'm going to do this for the rest of my life'."

Want to paint?

What: Creative Discovery with Elizabeth M. Higgins, watercolor painting classes

Where: Court Plaza Building, 205 E. Main St., Hillsboro

Online: elizabethmhiggins.com


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