“Jack and Lucy”
Norfolk Terrier double portrait
12 x 16 inches, original oil painting
These adorable dogs were the subjects of a recent portrait commission for a long-time client and friend of mine. Her two dogs are getting up there in years, and she thought it was a good time to have their portraits done for posterity. Lucy, on the left, is the younger of the two. Jack, on the right, is eleven, I believe. Jack had already had his summer haircut, but Lucy had not.
Now, there’s no way you can get two dogs to pose and hold a pose with the light on them “just so” … so every portrait begins with a photo session. That involves a fair amount of crawling around on the ground to shoot them from the right angle. My husband and I were shooting simultaneously, to maximize the number of reference photos we’d get before the dogs ran out of energy or patience with us. The next step was to edit the pictures in Photoshop to put together a composite where the light and direction of their gaze was consistent. After client approval of the reference composite, it just comes down to the painting, which was very enjoyable.
If you’re interested in having a portrait done of your favorite pet, please write.
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“Japanese Spitz Dog”
12 x 16 inches
oil on canvas
Interested in having a portrait of your pet? Please write.
When we were in Arizona not too long ago, and visiting a beautiful lake, my attention was suddenly diverted from the sparkling water by the dazzling fur of this little dog, who was being treated to a walk. I asked the owners if I could take some pictures of her, and they happily agreed. I explained that I was an artist, always on the lookout for an interesting subject. I almost always paint animals from photography (they aren’t the best at holding still) so I worked on this portrait when I got back home. More than a year later the painting found a new home with the owners of a dog who looked identical to this one. The Arizona folks called it a Japanese Spitz dog, but it greatly resembles the American Eskimo dog, an AKA breed.