This was another commission I had to do before Christmas. I used to have a Cocker Spaniel so I am very familiar with them. I had a very good photo reference for this which is always helpful. I thought I would show a couple pics of my process because I always enjoy seeing how others work through the process. Everyone has a different approach. This was a 10×8 and again the couple who owned this dog was so enthusiastic it was heartwarming (=
It has been way too long since I posted…sorry everyone, sometimes life gets in the way. But I wanted to post this first and show you the finished product. I think she came out really cute. The reaction of the owner when she saw it was priceless. It makes it all worth while when someone is so happy with their painting =D
The only thing I would like to change about this would be that it has no texture. But in all reality, a Dachshund has such a smooth coat that I am ok with it. I was definitely a bit anxious doing a backlit picture. The dog is so dark and there was very little real definition in the photo I had to work from. I was unsure if I would be able to pull it off. But i have to say that I was pretty happy with it, and considering the response of the owner, I am pleased.
This is the second time that I painted this little cutie. My goal here was to focus on getting the subtle light changes and shape right. I love the little spot of light on her back that allows the nose to come forward. These types of lighting really capture my attention. It can be a challenge to get the value just right so that it will do what you want but it is worth the effort of practicing. I love the softness and variety of color in this too. I was interested in creating roundness with the contrast of cool and warm colors. It was good practice.
This is a commissioned piece. I really liked the way the shininess of his coat came out. I would like to have added a bit more warmth in it somehow. But even though this is very cool, it appeals to me. I usually prefer warm tones in a painting, but I really like the combinations in this.
These are my best friends’ dogs. They are very cute and well behaved. I have had this photo for quite a while just waiting for the right time to do it. I have several others of them, as well, that I will be doing. They are good subjects for practice. This is one of my favorite pet portraits so far.
This was done for my niece. It was actually one of the more difficult pets I have done. It was difficult to find a photo of her that was detailed enough to paint from. I think it turned out cute, especially with the little dinosaur toy. The background is an interesting thing, I never know what color to use. The panel was underpainted with light red and when I put ochre over it, it came out this orangy tone, which I sort of liked. It wasn’t what I was going for but I thought it worked well, so I left it. I guess it is a good example of one of those happy accidents.
This girl is relaxing contentedly on her cushion. I’m sure it is only after hours of rambunctious play that she finally gave in to a rest. It seems like those eyes are even now, thinking about what sort of play may be up next.
This wiry coat can be tricky to paint. I found myself just the slightest bit frustrated in the process. It takes many layers to build up the depth of color in all those hairs. It can seem like one will never get the final stages. But the end results are worth the effort. Many different colors can be seen. It is especially nice in the sunlight.
This is a painting that was a little experimental. I used a black and white photo to try to make myself focus more on using warm vs. cools depending on where they were in relation to the light. It was actually quite helpful. I look forward to doing it more. I don’t want to just copy a picture, but use it as a guide to be more creative.
This beautiful girl is my sister’s dog. It took me a while to get a good picture of her, but I think this one worked very well. She had just been groomed and is looking her very best. She has such big, warm eyes.