Wednesday, 9 December 2015

Little Lucy...a pet portrait

chihuahua+pet portrait+goache+dog+brindle+NicseARTh
Lucy - gouache on paper 6 x 6 inches

I'm quite a messy painter so, a few weeks ago, fed up with having to change into 'painting clothes' or else inevitably end up with paint smeared over clothes I didn't want paint smeared over, I decided to invest in a pair of coveralls (Like workmen wear!). Now it's really easy to just pull them on over whatever I'm wearing and not worry about wiping my paint covered hands down the front! Plus they have the added bonus of being big enough to wear over layers of clothes for added insulation now that the winter has arrived!

For this painting however I definitely didn't need to don my coveralls. I rarely use gouache anymore but I had mentioned the last time I used it to paint Frank how it was quite a sedate way of painting compared to my usual slip, slap, slop with acrylics. Anyway, this is Lucy. She's a teeny tiny chihuahua that I was asked to paint as a surprise Christmas present. The recipient is very unlikely to come across my blog so it's okay to post her her before the big day. 

chihuahua+pet portrait+goache+dog+brindle+NicseARTh
The real Lucy

I started this when we got back from our trip a couple of weeks ago but because we get so very little good quality daylight these days, I've only been able to do a little bit here and there. I do have a daylight lamp which is useful for the darker days but the problem with working from a reference photo is that the light reflects off the shiny photo paper which doesn't matter so much when I'm painting landscapes as they're usually pretty far removed from the reference photo anyway but when painting a more realistic pet portrait it means I can't see the details on the photo so well, so I have to just wait for the few hours a day when it's bright enough to paint by natural light.

Lucy's close up

No other news really. I have a head full of ideas but am finding the lack of daylight incredibly frustrating as it means waiting until much later in the morning to get the dogs out for their morning walk and having to take them out well before it gets dark (which it does at about 3.30) for their afternoon walk which really eats into the daylight hours for painting. Coupled with the fact that right now I seem to be the queen of procrastination always getting distracted with housework, laundry, cuddling the dogs, the next chapter in whatever book I'm reading and I'm just not being very artfully productive at the moment at all. 

I did fall in love with a multi-coloured ball of yarn the other day which I ended up buying, so I think perhaps it's time (two years after first threatening to) that I actually learn to crochet! Maybe that could keep my creative juices flowing during the winter when I run out of daylight painting hours! 

All my favourite colours in one ball of yarn!!

I'll be linking up with Paint Party Friday to see what everyone has been been up to - hopefully you'll have been a lot more productive than me!


  1. Love her <3 My nana will be just delighted I'm sure :) x

  2. what a sweet heart, those eyes,, so adorable!!!
    We have such a limited window of good light here as well, its frustrating, well, it was frustrating for me as well,

    that beautiful yard will brighten your days for sure!

  3. Love that sweet wee face ☺ daylight does make such a difference to painting I understand completely. I would recommend you tube for crochet videos. It's so easy when you stop and start until you get it. It's so worthwhile. It took being on a plaster cast for 6 weeks to make me sit still long enough to learn. I think dark evenings would be a much better use of time and wish I had learned years

  4. Little Lucy is beautiful, well done. Coveralls are a good idea, although I already have paint on nearly all of my clothes, but perhaps a good idea for the future! Happy PPF; Hugs, Valerie

  5. Love this painting. So much detail. The yarn is fabulous. Once you learn to crochet you will ask yourself why you took so long to learn. LOL

  6. Someone is in for a wonderful surprise. She is beautiful as are your delicate paint strokes.

  7. Gorgeous painting from cute Lucy. Very well done, love‼
    Happy PPF ♥

  8. Your painting of Lucy is SOOO beautiful Nic! I just know this will bring tears of joy to the recipient's face. And that delightful ball of yarn definitely needs to be turned into something:) Happy crocheting!

  9. Lucy is adorable!! Yes, these darker days are much less inspiring, but I am busy trying to get the new studio ready for the new year, so of course since I can't paint right now, I want to paint everything in sight! Another couple of weeks and hopefully it'll be almost done! Meanwhil I'm quite sure you are far more artfully productive than I am right now!! Xx

  10. What a precious gift you created...the receiver will be so thrilled...she is just adorable and you are sooooooo talented!! Love this work!

    Hugs Giggles


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