As an artist I never know what kind of work will catch on – especially with the power of social media. All it takes is the right page to share your work and you’re swamped! I’ve been carving pencils all year and one of the sub-categories I’ve added recently is ‘Pet Portraits‘ in Pencil lead.
Carving a pencil lead is tough to begin with, but trying to match a certain breed of dog and then try to capture that particular dog’s own personality in a piece of graphite that is 3/16″ of an inch wide.Not that I’m complaining – anyone who knows me, knows I love a challenge!
Here’s a look at one of subjects, “Boomer”:
It’s a lot of fun to get the 3 dimensions looking ‘just right’ when a slight miscalculation can lop off the poor dog’s ear!
I like to get as good a reference as I can before I start, and some photos are better than others. Getting the detail I need from a photo can be a tough – but like I said, I like a challenge!
For this portrait of “Thor” I added a stack of cushions for him to sit on – the client later said that it suited him perfectly!
Here’s another reference photo, this time of “Buster” :
If you need a unique for that pet owner who ‘has everything’ – perhaps a pencil portrait is just the ticket.
July 16, 2016: Update – here is a another dog portrait I recently completed. It’s a King Charles Spaniel.