All righty folks, step right up and be the witness to a first. I'm attempting a portrait of our "new" little dog, CiCi, and those of you who have followed me for a while know I've never really done a portrait of one of our own pets.
I always wanted to, and I tried, but they just never looked right. A dear friend suggested that I couldn't paint our own babies because I knew them in many different moods and many different positions and poses and one static painting just couldn't portray them in my own eyes. She may be right, and if she is, perhaps that insight will allow me to finally paint one of our own. Understanding is often the first step in breaking down certain barriers.
So, here goes! It's pastel on a dark gray Ampersand PastelBord, 8x10 size which is still almost larger than life-size for her! Right now I'm just laying in some under colors. I asked my husband if he wanted me to paint her with her tongue in her mouth but we both agreed that it would not be her without her tongue hanging out. Also, most of the time her tongue just sticks out a little bit but when her head is tilted in that cute way, it does fall out further and we decided to go with that even though she may look slightly demented to other people. lol
For those of you who don't know her story and the reason why her tongue sticks out, here is the reason why. We got her from a rescue agency back in May of this year. They told us that she was probably a purebred Maltese used for breeding, about 4 or 5 years old. She had been found running down a very busy highway outside of Raleigh, NC. They said she was dirty, her hair matted, her nails grown into the pads of her paws and her teeth so rotten and infected that they all had to be pulled.
Without teeth, a dog can't keep it's tongue in its mouth very well and that's the reason CiCi's tongue hangs out much of the time. We don't care about that - she's really sweet and not a yappy little ankle-biter like many small dogs. She eats soft dog foods but can actually eat just about anything a regular dog can eat if she has enough time to really gum it! lol Seriously, she really fits our household well and even if she does look funny with her tongue hanging out, we still love her and besides, just think of all the money we save on teeth cleaning!
But back to the portrait at hand. There's still a lot to be done and my time is pretty limited right now so I'm posting this wip in hopes you all will hold me accountable. It's actually going fairly quickly and I hope I'll remember to get photos of the progress. Sometimes I just get to painting and it's finished before I remember to scan or photograph!
As always, if you see anything that needs adjusting, please let me know!