Monday, 31 January 2011

Lurcher oil painting

Santa - 12" x 8" oil on hardboard/masonite

Here is my latest commission - this painting being of a lurcher. When you look at this bitch's expressive, sensitive face, it is hard to accept that she was a rescue case suffering from a severe injury when her new family took her on. She blossomed and thrived in their care and has been a very happy family pet and number one dog for many years now.

If you would like to commission a portrait of your pet, please click on the navigation bar above - either 'Commissions' for basic information or 'Commissions in detail' for more information about the process. You can also email me at and I will be happy to help and answer any questions you may have.

Monday, 17 January 2011

Cocker Spaniel Champion

Sh Ch Wiljana Waterfall - 20" x 16" watercolour on Saunders Waterford paper

This is another of my Christmas commissions - well not strictly Christmas as it wasn't a present but a painting to honour the memory of a much loved girl who lived a full life and to a very good age. A top winner, she achieved the fantastic win of Reserve Best In Show at the world famous Crufts Dog Show in 2000. 

This photo isn't as good as I would have wished as it was taken as the light was getting low but hopefully it is good enough for the detail to be seen - and also for it to be obvious what a very beautiful girl she was.

To commission a painting or purchase an original or print, please visit my main website or email me at

Tuesday, 11 January 2011

Dalmatian - Dyson #2

Dalmatian - Dyson 20" x 16" oil on canvas

Following on from yesterday's post about Dyson, you'll remember I said I had painted two portraits of him. Today I am showing you the full body portrait of this lovely boy. I hope you like it.

To commission a painting or purchase an original or print, please visit my main website or email me at

Monday, 10 January 2011

Dalmatian - Dyson

Dyson - 10" x 8" oil on hardboard

This next Christmas commission consists of two paintings - a head study and a full body portrait - a double rememberance of a dog who died at far too early an age and is desperately missed by his owners. I am showing the head study today. 

These were difficult paintings for me, not technically, but emotionally. One of the reference photographs sent, while not suitable for the pose of either painting, was a very close up shot and one I looked at often to really get to know Dyson - he was obviously a lovely dog and I can totally understand his owners' heartbreak.

Dyson's owner let his wife into the secret (they had been planned as a surprise Christmas present for her) after he had seen emails of the paintings and I know that when they were received, it was both with joy and heartache. I am glad that they have now plucked up the courage and hung them, so that Dyson can in a small way still be with them. On a brighter note, I am very pleased indeed to report that they now share their lives with a Dalmatian puppy named Ditto who has brought laughter back into their lives.

To commission a painting or purchase an original or print, please either visit my main website or email me at

Thursday, 6 January 2011

Champion Welsh Springer Spaniel

Welsh Springer Spaniel - Sh Ch Glenbrows Picture This JW ShCM (Luka) - 20" x 16" oils on canvas

Here is another of my Christmas commissions - this time complicated by Luka's owner's wife having access to his emails through her phone, hence the need for surreptitious text messages between us! I think around Christmas time I must walk around constantly looking shifty as I am always keeping so many secrets!

When this painting was finished there was the added complication of unheard of early snowfalls in the UK and on the day I was due to take Luka's painting for framing, I wasn't sure how I was going to get to the framer. As it was the journey was very scary - not that the snow was too deep, but the roads were very slippery with snow and ice. Anyway, we got there in our tank - old Volvo 240 - and my wonderful framer sorted it all out for me, including arranging the courier to collect and deliver the painting. I breathed a sigh of relief when I knew that Luka had arrived safely at his home in time for Christmas! I am pleased to report that the painting takes price of place in Luka's home - well I suppose second place after the gorgeous Luka himself!

If you would like to commission a painting or buy an original or a print or cards, please either visit my main website or email me at

(It occurred to me that some people might not know what the initials before and after Luka's show name mean - Sh Ch stands for Show Champion and ShCM means Show Certificate of Merit)

Tuesday, 4 January 2011

Dalmatian Head Study

Ch Camargue Gucci Envy (Lola) - 16" x 20" watercolour on Saunders Waterford watercolour paper

As many of you will know, I was busy before Christmas completing commissions which were to be given as Christmas presents and couldn't therefore be shared with you. The first of these paintings, a head study of a Dalmatian, which I am now showing you, was actually planned as a birthday present to be given in February, but when it arrived shortly after Christmas, her owner couldn't resist giving the painting to his wife - and so now has to find another present for her!

I actually managed to take a work in progress photo of this painting and here it is:

As you can see, I have painted all the spots in and started adding colour to her eyes and some shadings on the head and neck. The shaded areas are made in a couple of different ways; one method is to drop colour into pools of clear water previously painted on the surface, and the other is to paint using a very watery colour and then soften the edges with clear water. If you leave hard edges they can be the very devil to get rid of - so I don't leave them! I think you can just see that I have also put in a few strokes to indicate the lay of the coat and if you look at the spots you will see that their edges also indicate which way the fur is lying. I like to get the eyes of the dog painted as soon as possible in any of my paintings, as I totally detest looking at them without eyes as they seem 'dead' and I want them alive as soon as I can manage it!

If you have any questions, either about commissioning a painting or purchasing an original painting, print or card, please email me at Also if you have any art related questions, please email me and I will be happy to help. I will do this in confidence if you prefer or if you'd like to share your journey with other readers, that could be fun - so let me know.

Lastly but not least...