Fortuitously Named: Meet Botanical Artist Lotus McElfish

Written by Artie The Panda

During a road trip with her husband, then-wedding-coordinator Lotus McElfish began brainstorming new professions. As she considered her fondness for art and nature, the phrase “botanical artist” came to mind. And just like that, a new career was born.

Well, maybe not just like that. She did face a learning curve, but doing new creative things has never daunted Lotus. Fun fact: she and her woodworker built an off-the-grid cabin in the Colorado mountains. By hand.

But I digress.

Back to botany and art. As Lotus began studying her subject matter, she started documenting rare and endangered plant species. She wound up educating the public about her findings, and growing her own sense of conservation awareness. After all, who wouldn’t want to protect such poetic beauties as Pale Blue-Eyed Grass or the Texas Snowbell? In that way, Lotus would tell you that her art has changed her.

Along her newfound path, she discovered Frame Destination. One of her favorite frames is Wood Frame Profile 502 Black paired with the Bainbridge 4-ply Alphamat Snowflake White with Black Core. For Lotus, Frame Destination offers “excellent service, quality frames, and I love how I can even get the glass through you!”

See more of her work.

To see more of Lotus’s work, visit For a glimpse of floral wonders currently gracing her art table, see her Instagram: And if you’re wondering about Lotus’s favorite tool and her current botanical obsession, read on.

Now for Artie’s Eight with Lotus McElfish…

1. What is your background; how did you get started?

A few years ago my husband and I were on a road trip, planning to relocate and make a career change. During the trip, as an exercise in finding our new occupations, we were asking ourselves, "What are our passions?" I wanted to do more art (I was working as a wedding coordinator) and I mentioned that I used to make wreaths with foraged plants, take nature walks, did aromatherapy, etc. And then it hit me that I really like everything relating to botanical. I said out of the blue that I wanted to be a “botanical artist.” The problem: I had zero experience in watercolor techniques or botany. So, it has been a journey to get back into art, perfect my skill in watercolor and learn just what it means to be a botanical artist.” Mostly to take that leap and not take another job.

2. What role do you think the artist plays in society?


3. What has been a formative experience or the best advice you’ve received within your career?

To follow your intuitions.

4. What ways does your work reflect your personality?

Delicate and dances!

5. Creative blocks, do you get them? If so, how do you overcome them?

Of course. I feel most often it is due to my own insecurities. Got to get that out of the way and know my own value and artistic voice.

6. What is your most indispensable tool? (Not counting the obvious, like paints, brushes, canvas, camera, etc.)

My magnifier. Lets me see the details on the plant that I don’t notice with my naked eye.  Surprised sometimes to see a tiny insect that I don’t particularly want in my studio!

7. Do you have a new project you are working on, or a new passionate idea?

Exploring the geometry of plants and painting more endangered plants.

8. What is your favorite paint color name?

Quinacridone Gold.


All artwork and/or photographs used in this post are subject to copyright held by the featured artist.

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