Thursday, September 4, 2008

WIP - Black Lab Portrait

Today I started a coloured pencil portrait of our dog Connor. I've been wanting to paint or draw this particular photo for a long time and as the wip of Tayla is down in Wellington with my tutor at the moment, I thought that I would draw Connor to keep me busy in the meantime. Drawing black fur is an interesting exercise and you have to be so observant to see the different tones. It's surprising how little is actually pure black. I'm doing this on ColourFix paper which I prefer as it is more robust and can handle the handling.

The weather is so beautiful today that I ended up sitting outside in the sun drawing while the munchkins were asleep. Spring has truly arrived and I am so grateful. I am not a winter person when winter is rainy and cloudy. I can handle winter if there is sun, but this particular winter in Auckland has been so wet. Yesterday I took the munchkins on an hour and a half walk (which included a stop at the library and pet shop) and it felt so good to be outside. My son Carter found a cocker spaniel puppy at the pet shop that he wanted to take home saying "Mine Mine Mine". At home he has Connor, our black lab, but I think he likes the smallness of the puppies as Connor weighs at least 3 times as much as Carter and while he is good for climbing on he isn't the right size for tug of wars etc. Carter used to love playing with Stray when he used to visit.

I am still working on this skyscape but still a long way to go. I prefer to work wet-on-wet with big skies like this, just doing highlights when it is dry. However I haven't managed a large enough gap of time to do that so have been doing bits and pieces so I'm having to work differently which I'm not enjoying so much and you lose the opportunity for the real blending when parts have dried already. I think I will end up doing lots of glazing to get the effect I want. Ignore the bottom, I haven't done anything with that and the only reason it is blue because I painted over an unfinished painting and that was the sky.

I probably won't have another crack at this one until Sunday as we have a birthday party for both munchkins this Saturday. Tayla is one next Monday and Carter is two next Friday so it is a joint party. My Mum is coming up for the entire week so hopefully I can get some extra painting time next week as I feel I really need to catch up.


Leanne Brischetto said...

That looks really good, can't wait to see the finished product. I'd love for to you draw my pup, Dax. Do you think we could organise something?

Melissa Muirhead said...

Absolutely Leanne. I'm really enjoying this actually so would be keen to draw more dogs. I must take a photo of where I am with this later today and post it as I've finished his head now. Didn't manage to do anything on it yesterday as we have a birthday party for the munchkins so my creativity was spent on (attempting to) decorating cakes.

Leanne Brischetto said...

Hey ... I was just looking at your finished pic of your dog and it's just beautiful! Again, I'd so love it if you were able to do a sketch of Dax for me, and of course we'd pay you for it. Do you think you'd be able to at any stage in the future?

Saw the photos on facebook ... clucky, clucky!! You two make pretty looking babes! :)