Firstly welcome to the home of my new blog.  This will be where I add many works in progress and I hope you’ll check back often to see what I’m at.

Fudge and Oreo were on my to-do list for a while and I was so looking forward to meeting and photographing them for their portrait.  They did not disappoint and in typical dachshund fashion they barked at me the whole time I was in their house.  And just right too!  Who does this woman think she is coming into our house and snapping our pictures!

Anyway, I hope you enjoy their progress.  I certainly enjoyed working on this.

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Fudge and Oreo’s outlines have been transferred to my yellow velour and ready to paint!  I always draw the image on cartridge paper as you can’t rub out on velour.  This means I can transfer my line cleanly and tweak at it some more before I start to paint.

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I’ve started that teal sofa although it looks very blue in this image.  Such a perfect backdrop to the colours of the dogs.  It’s always good to have complimentary colours behind the subjects and this is why I love sofa backdrops.  Sometimes you hit the jackpot and get a really beautiful combination of colours like this piece.

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Starting work on Fudge and his rich colouring is going to look so nice on this sofa.  I’m working my way around the top of his head initially getting my colours right and starting to add a bit of detail to some areas just to get a feel for how the layers will go on.

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I tend to outline eyes with a sharp black pastel pencil first.  If you’d like to see how I paint eyes I have filmed Oreo’s eyes to make a video tutorial.  I will post that up when I get a chance to edit it.

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Fudge is almost done now.  Just some tweaks to his coat left to do.

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Starting on Oreo.  She is a gorgeous shaded blonde and where she is sitting her coat is glowing in the sunlight that comes up close to her on the sofa.  I will be saving all my brightest highlights for this right side as we look at her.

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You can already see the difference in value between her left and right ears.  The one being directly lit has had Unison Grey27 which is often my lightest white value.  I will however strengthen these areas with pure white as I really want her to glow.

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Here you can see my set up working on a free standing easel and that big arm in front of my work is my daylight lamp.  I couldn’t be without a daylight lamp as I love working late into the night.  This lamp is recently new and I love it as it casts light evenly all over the work.  You can also see my video camera here as I was filming the work on Oreo’s facial features.  I’m not that quick at editing though but I’ll do my best to get the video up shortly.

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Oreo’s face is in, however I still have a lot of work to do on it as her expression is not quite right.  Often I will spend a very long time coming back to eyes and tweaking the smallest amounts, and each time the expression totally changes.

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Although it’s very minor changes I have softened her expression now and am much happier.  Working on down the rest of her body and laying in the darkest areas.

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You can see the bright side of her chest now which gives her a real 3D feel.

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Adding some very fine whiskers with an extrememly sharp pastel pencil.  Sometimes I will use the edge of a big pastel but in this case they are so fine I have to get the scalpel out and sharpen!

F&OpreviewHere is the finished painting along with my Brocci posing.  I love this breed and the array of colourful coats they have.  Hope you have enjoyed my post on my new site.  Do check back soon for more work in progress!