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Thursday, May 28, 2009

Mily: A Watercolor Pet Portrait

May was a crazy, busy kind of month. Studio time involved several portrait commissions, including a triptych pet portrait; five exhibitions to prepare for this spring and summer; and three portfolios to send out. Below is a recent completed pet portrait.

Mily is a beautiful American Bulldog with a sweet personality. She was such a pleasure to photograph and paint.






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Step 1: Small color value sketches. I do 6-12 sketches before deciding on a direction for the painting.

Step 2: Full-sized value sketch.
Here is where I get to know my subject
better and work out any value issues.
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Step 3 & 4: The painting as it progressed.
Starting with an excellent reference photo is crucial to the success of the painting. I rarely use existing photos, instead preferring to take my own. Taking over 100 photos for a portrait is not unusual. I find that even with that many photos, only about 3-4 are suitable for the portrait.
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Beautiful Milly--framed and ready to go to her permanent home.

9 comments:

laurens.paint.palette said...

Peggi, thanks for sharing your process! You do amazing work!

Nancy Van Blaricom said...

Great post Peggy. I love the finished portrait of Milly, and I enjoy reading and seeing the process as much. I know the owners will love how you captured her.

Manon Doyle said...

Wow! What a stunning painting you've done of Mily! You are truly an exceptional artist Peggi!

willow said...

Just wonderful! You've really captured her essence here.

jeannette stgermain said...

Peggy, such beautiful work you do! But I can see it's the result of a lot of hard work - 6-12 sketches, before you actually start your painting -wow, my hat off for you:)

Jo A. T.B. said...

Nice work Peggy, your detail very realistic! Makes me miss my own Delilah!

redchair said...

this one is an 'OMG!' Beautiful realizm. Really outstanding work Miss Peggi.

Vikki

Costescu said...

just georgous! I am just drooling over your rich darks, often darks end up flat & dead, but yours have such a wonderful glow! the owners must be very happy!

Abby Creek Art said...

Beautiful portrait, Peggi. Your sketches are amazing too. The full size black and white one is gorgeous.