I met Poppy to on one of her walks to photograph her for this portrait.  Sometimes a photo worth painting comes easy and this was one of those times.  With a tennis ball in hand she just gave me all her attention.  If only it was always as simple!
Both myself and Poppy’s human thought that this image just summed her up.  After only meeting her it was clear to see she was alert but had such a soft lovely expression at the same time.
Hope you enjoy her progress…


The finished portrait 14″x12″ pastel on velour


I’ve transferred my line drawing onto the yellow
velour and started blocking in the greenery in
the background.  Using a large selection of the
lovely Unison greens.  I find green so difficult, there
are so many in the Irish landscape!
Adding in splashes of orange and brown earth
 as Autumn is upon us and these colours will really
add some warmth to the background.
 I’m trying to keep the background very
loose and only making very definite marks now.
I want it to appear blurred so that Poppy will really
stand out.  I’m also trying to make sure that I have
some dark contrast behind the areas of Poppy which
will be highlighted.


 This is a bit of a leap in progress I’m afraid
as I did a demo at Hillsborough Art club this
evening and made some progress on Poppy’s face.
Although it looks as though I got a lot done, it’s really
only the ground work done and I will spend hours tweaking
this, especially those eyes and the nose area.  There are some
lovely subtle reflections in her eyes which I want to work on.
Making better progress after a full evening of
working more on her face.  I go back though making
smaller and smaller marks, adding more vibrant colour
and adjusting the overall shapes slightly.  I also use quite a
lot of green in her coat.  Some of the black reflections are
green and especially under the chin will have a hint of
that grass reflecting.
Almost there now, working my way down her
bib and using a variety of colours other than white
here saving the white for her muzzle which is
being hit by the strongest light.
A close up of the scanned image showing some of the
colours in her face.  You can also see the shape of someone
standing in her right eye as we look at her.  When I zoomed in
there was a whole scene in there with the grass and the
figure of her human standing by as I kneel to photograph her.
Thanks for visiting!
Please check back for more work in progress.
Also please have a look at my 2016 calendars which are now available through my blog via the tab at the top of the page 🙂