Sharing a little portrait from before Christmas. Hope you enjoy my progress on Blake the Akita.

Blake’s finished portrait 12″x12″ soft pastel on velour

This is Blake who I painted from this beautiful photograph taken in bright light. The client wanted a plain background which I thought worked nicely with the warm tones in Blake’s coat. The only thing I did in the painting was to decrease some of the contrast in the coat so you can see his eyes etc more clearly.

Working on 12″ x 12″ I choose the sandy velour and transfer my sketch onto it. I love the square format especially for a big head like this.

I begin by layering in the darks and although I use a lot of black in the coat, there are also dark rich purples, oranges, browns and reds.

The lighter hairs need more accuracy as they are so visible against the dark underneath. I have also worked those eyes after augmenting the photo a little to see them more clearly.

Onto that lovely pink tonge. I use a mixture of pinks and purples.

I like how the light catches the end of the tongue creating a nice shadow. You can also see the rough layers on his muzzle. These suggest the direction of the fur but are more about blocking in colour than about individual hairs at this stage.

Using lots of vibrant red throughout his coat. I often get asked about the vibrant colours in my Unison pastel Animal set but I use them so often. You can find splashes of vibrant colour in darker coats in sunlight. This will give their coat a realy sunny glimmer.

Over the past couple of months we have accumulated a few new decorations in Freda the motorhome, Hairy Maclary I suppose is included in that statement 😀

We try to collect little pieces we like from different places as well as artist friends. In this one you can see our little print of Michelle Lucking’s amazing wave painting.

Also when I visited home in December, I received the most special Christmas gift from my sister.  She has an extreme love of crotcheting, a passion I have dabbled in. But she takes it to other levels! This blanket is unbelieveably complex. A treasured addition to Freda!

Thanks for visiting and hope you’ll call back soon for more work in progress.  It’s been a little quieter over the Christmas holidays but I’ll be back on full steam in 2018. Happy New Year everyone!