I went to photograph Fluffy in her home and quickly discovered her favourite place.  Like my own dog, it is on the back of a sofa where she can watch the door and all the activities going on outside.  This makes the perfect spot for Fluffy’s portrait to be set as she is happy to pose up there, and it allows me to add other textures to the painting.  I particularly like sofas as they always represent the dogs who are fortunate enough to be in the house, and on the furniture!  A true family member 🙂


Fluffy’s finished portrait. 10″x15″ pastel on velour.


Here I’ve got her outline on the yellow coloured velour
ready to paint.  I really love the back lighting in the picture
as it will allow me to show Fluffy’s outer glow in the sunshine.
The background in I’ve started Fluffy’s halo of fuzz.
It’s using the pure white and I’ll come back and make
it stronger throughout the painting.
Using a lot of the Unison Animal half stick set in
this with that top row of light shades being vital.
You really need to have off white shades and tints in
all the colours as white reflects so much of what is
around it.  I’m looking into the roots where the hair sprouts
from and trying to lay down those colours first.
When I come back in with the the lightest shades and
start to bring the white in at certain parts around her right
eye where the sun is hitting this starts to give her
face and eyebrows their depth and shape.
 Getting there now I’m starting to work the details
in eyes and nose and bring the highlights down her
muzzle.  There is some lovely reflection on the shine of
the sofa in front of her.  I lay down the darkest parts of
the sofa first and start to work some of the colours from
Fluffy’s face onto the dark background.


The big sticks of Unison can easily be used
to get small detail.  This is one of the giant
sticks of BE1 which I often use on it’s side as
a film of colour on a hazy sky.  Because it’s been
used on it’s side it now has lovely sharp edges
all round the a curve at the end.  Perfect for
the small flecks of hair catching light.
Hope you’ve enjoyed Fluffy’s progress.