Ally & Bread, custom pet portrait

 A dear family friend asked me to paint this portrait of her dogs, Ginger Bread and Ally.   They are all cuddled up together in the photo I used as a reference-so sweet!  The white pup, Ally, is a spunky new rescue.  Bread is almost smiling in the photograph, such a happy face.  Bonnie & Bob, their owners, lived next door to my Grandma while I was growing up.  My brothers, cousins and I spent countless Sundays running around the yard and driveway between the two homes.   I remember their dog Katie from my childhood years & I was honored to paint the newest members of the Clark family.

The painting is acrylic on an eight inch square wooden cradleboard.  At work I spend a lot of time blending paint, teaching the wet on wet technique.  This is quite different from my own studio process.   The brushstrokes and patches of color are a subjective preference and also a result of the medium; I don't use retarder with the paint and it dries very quickly.   So much of my studio practice is married to printmaking...whether painting, drawing or making a collage, I find myself working in layers, keeping the background shallow and sometimes flattening it completely with continual patterns.  I love the wallpaper effect created by the dots and the bizarre sense of space due to the absence of shadows.


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