Thursday, January 7, 2010


Can you just see those little eyes just begging for another Cheerio.
This is our baby and the reason for my lack of good oil paintings/drawings these days but really how do you put down something like this to paint, I haven't figured it out yet. She's is totally delightful, we're glad we went ahead and got her with all the upgrades. 

I've decided this baby is very hard to capture because by the time I'm done she looks older. This is our baby she is a doll. Her new word is "baby" and suddenly everything in the world is a "baby".
I'm undecided on the colors, I also thought I would go somewhere with that pose but just left it in the end when no ideas came to me(holding a flag?). 

What a busy, busy month. I finished up several portrait commissions, started a mentoring program through the Portrait Society of America and worked on a few other paintings.

Below is one of the portraits of a client and her sweet dog, Addy.


As promised here is the first installment of the tiger I have started. I love big cats and tigers and leopards are my favourite. I would like to fit in more wildlife art and I think big cats are wonderful subjects. This is still very early days and there is a lot more work to do before this piece of wildlife art is completed so stay tuned for more news soon!

It snowed quite a lot over night and we have about 9 inches of snow, there is a new severe weather warning for our area for the forthcoming freezing conditions which are due in tonight and will not prove very helpful at all!
Anyway we have been busy outdoors until lunchtime and we walked a fair few miles out to the main road but this is also closed so we won't be going anywhere very soon!

Obviously our crew helped us attend to all the chickens and although he hates having his photo taken, Zac is very pretty and always look good on film!

And Willow it seems loves snow, although she does stand out a bit!

Anyway, this was the start of our 2 1/2 hour trek down to the main road....

....which was delayed slightly by the continuous dog fighting!

Today was good and bad, we finished work early due to the severe weather we were having and are still due to have which was good, unfortunately for us, we live so far away from any main roads it was already too treacherous to drive home so we had to park up our van and walk home along the track shown above to our house. Having said that it wasn't that bad, we'd stopped at the chip shop and bought some chips which we ate as we wondered home!

 As you can see no one had been there before us on our trek! Willow bravely led the way and I only fell over once, landing on my knee and hopping all the way home!!!

And here is our house not long after the snow began to fall, the flakes were getting bigger and stickier!

And why did the chicken cross the road! My two wildlly viscious killer dogs just watch as a hen saunters by across the garden

So I decided to take some more photos and here are my two trusty assistants who check lighting and focus at every turn!

Not forgetting Gypsy who does suffer in the snow due to her lack of height, she seems to sink with every paw step!

Here is my beautiful Zac, he's a bit of a snow baby and he eats it, rolls in it and runs around in it! Isn't he handsome!

And finally some of my geese out in the snow, they skate more than waddle in this weather, the other half were wise and stayed in their shed all huddled up in the straw. Clever birds!

Hooray!!!!! I've actually finished this dog portrait now, at one point I thought it would end up on my ever growing pile of half finished work, I keep telling myself I will go back to them but I think we all know that will not happen so perhaps I need to clear them all out so I don't feel so guilty about them!
Anyway, this was quite a large dog portrait and it did take some effort to fill it in, pencils do not have the greatest coverage, in fact it's akin to using a ball point pen I think so I'm pleased will my staying power at least.

And news on Cyril....
Just for you Liz, unfortunately Cyril escaped just before Christmas leaving his sparring partner Shizzle behind and made a mad dash after bouncing from the head of the lady looking after him. We've spent almost two weeks looking for him, I travelled quite a distance each day due to holidays to look for him and feed Shizzle, but it seems Cyril has decided he's a wild animal after all and would rather be in the trees with his kith and kin. I was devastated at first as was the lady who was taking excellent care of him, but all said and done, this was eactly what was meant to happen, it just happened before we planned it. For a couple of days I had terrible thoughts about him starving to death as he'd have no store of nuts but I work for the Forestry Commission and they have a never ending battle with squirrels as they chew the bark from trees for food, well there are trees everywhere so there's no problem there, then I worried about the snow, well who heard of squirrels being wiped out because of snow! Cyril was nice and fat before his break for freedom, in fact probably fatter than any wild squirrel so I should imagine he's living the life of Riley now and finding himself a girlfriend for the spring. We have left all manner of squirrels traps and nuts out for him just in case he does decide to put in an appearance but I'm very doubtful now as he is a wild creature after all.
All in all I think that he's had the best start, he was he size of an egg without fur when the cat delivered him to the door step without much chance at all, so after I fed him up and Alex has looked after him so well I'm confident he's chewing on a beech tree somewhere!

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