Chelsea Girl – a gorgeous female boxer

I’ve been a bit tied up with several commissions ( which is great, obviously) and quite a lot of work with the Chandos Society of Artists recently, but, as the festive season approaches, I can review the work which, I hope, had found favour with the people that asked me to produce it…

First was the pleasure of producing a portrait of Chelsea, the charming successor to Rocky whom I depicted earlier this year ( see post: thinking outside the box(er)). (Tricky blighters, nesting brackets!) (Nesting Boxers? …Sorry!) So, the other paintings will follow, but this is Chelsea’s spot.

I took lots of photos and did some sketches, but this was Julie’s (Chelsea’s owner) preferred pose:



Then I followed what has proved a useful plan, which is to collect sketches, photos and other ideas together:



and then to do a drawing, full-size, in water-solouble crayons (such as neocolour II).:

chelsea 1 resized


You can deal with any problems of composition at this stage, then trace the main shapes and …finally:

Chelsea 2013 resizedI was encouraged to think it a good likeness when the windpw-cleaner ( who also does Chelsea’s owners’ windows ) said ‘I see you’re doing a picture of Chelsea!’ . I had the painting on an easel inthe conservatory, so he had a good view. He then said ‘I recognise the umbrella stand too.’ But Chelsea’s owners seemed pleased with the likeness of the dog, too, which was a relief!

More on the other commissions later!



Thinking outside the Box(er)

Tigger helpingRocky finished, reduced DSCF1915

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.

sketchbook Rocky DSCF1929