Archive for June, 2011

Paint a greyhound

June 2nd, 2011 4 comments


My artist buddy Jordan told me I had to paint a greyhound. She’s an artist that specializes in pet portraits and for some reason she gave me this assignment. Now, I’ve never been much of a dog person, I’m a cat lady. I’m not the kind of person that gets all goofy when I see a puppy and sit there while the pup jumps on me and gives me a bath. However, dogs are really beautiful animals and I love the look of a healthy dog doing what dogs do.

I wasn’t really sure where I could find nice photos of Greyhounds, so I did a Google search and found lots of copyrighted professional dog photos, perfectly posed, like they were ready for a dog show. That wasn’t what I was looking for. Then I remembered I did a search for Greyhounds, and I found paydirt. First I found Allie (above). I wasn’t really comfortable with the way these dogs were built yet, but Allie was patient, and she had nice eyes.

The next dog I found was Jaina, she really appealed to me because I had the opportunity to paint her whole body, and she had a heart on her back.

Greyhounds are large dogs with short hair and very little flesh. You can see all their bones and muscles through their fur. What’s funny about these speed machines is that they are usually not such high energy dogs. When I painted Allie (the first dog), I was a little intimidated by her brindle markings, so I just painted her tan and white.

But when I found Gale I knew I had to paint her brindle fur because it was so beautiful.

To me, Greyhounds look like a cross between a deer and dinosaur. Babs is one of the more fetching ones I have ever seen. The reason I chose Babs as my last subject was not just because she was a pretty face, but because I discovered that black Greyhounds have a harder time getting adopted, just like black cats.

All of these paintings measure 6″ x 6″ and they are each for sale for $50.00. Forty percent of the proceeds of any of these paintings goes to ok, ok, not cat rescue but GREYHOUND rescue! Another important detail about these paintings, they are all real dogs (bitches) and they are all up for adoption!

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In the sunny courtyard

June 1st, 2011 3 comments

It was my last day in Calabria, my cousin Peppino was showing me a part of the neighborhood of the little town of Sersale, the neighborhood where he grew up. We came upon a little courtyard that belonged to the Talarico family, distant cousins of mine and of his. It was filled with morning light and there were a bunch of feral cats there sunning themselves. In the moments before they fled, I was able to catch this scene with my digital camera – I knew right then that I was going to paint it. And I have, I’ve painted it 3 times already. The first time I painted this scene, the painting was auctioned off for the “Itty Bitty Kitty society” and earned them over $300 for their cat rescue operation.
These little cats cling tenaciously to life because of the kindness of humans nearby. They eat leftover pasta mostly, I really don’t know how they survive, they must catch rodents too! There are many people in Italy who cherish their little wild cats, but there are also those who think they are pests and who treat them cruelly. This is why they are so fearful. They don’t trust strangers, but they hope that you too, will be a friend to them. It is most obvious in their hopeful little faces. Each time I go to Italy I want to come home with a box full of kitties..

This painting measures 10″ x 14″ and is painted on Arches fine watercolor paper. It is for sale, $250.00

Categories: cats, Italia Tags: