I was recently commissioned by a friend to paint a commemorative picture of Rocky, a noble Boxer dog who had gone to the great kennel in the sky. She provided me with many photographs and wanted Rocky and their house in the picture oh, and the collar was important too. This gave me a bit of a compositional problem, what with a house being big and a dog, relatively, small. I started out thinking of having Rocky standing outside the door, or in the gateway. But cropping out most of the house really wasn’t working. Then I hit on the idea of putting the house in the background with Rocky standing in the lane at some distance. That worked fine. I experimented with different doggy effects and in the end came up with something that satisfied me and Rocky’s owner. Mind you, the cat regarded the whole exercise as very suspect.