Dozer is the beloved beast of a dear friend that I've known since childhood. He is a real water baby and, fortunately for me, he has a woman in his life that not only loves him like crazy, but is a great photographer. I couldn't resist painting his portrait, it is the first 12" x 12" portrait I've done.
I've sketched Dozer, then began with the water detail. It took a bit of fiddling around to determine the color and value I wanted for the water. I loved the abstract pattern and stayed to the lighter side, thinking of a combination of sky and water.
I start by blocking in tones, I'm looking for the underlying colors and shades below his white coat. I'm also thinking of the overall value of the painting when it is finished. This phase always freaks me out a bit, the image looks very flat and strange, and my brain just wants to get it completed. Where to begin?
I never really noticed how incredibly weird tongues are until I started painting one. Dozer's tongue is a big part of this photo, and believe me, there were times I wished I'd found a photo with his mouth closed.
Funny how the things that you struggle with can end up being the things you like most about a portrait.
I'm Laura Reed, a long time painter and animal lover, this is my blog about beasts, painting, and whatnot.
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