I finished this pet portrait back in October, but I couldn’t show it to the world yet, because it was a commission for a Christmas gift. It started out as a pencil drawing, but I just wasn’t satisfied with the blackness of Max’s eyes, and I didn’t want to leave out the warm tones in his fur, so it evolved into a colored pencil painting. Or technically mixed media because I had to use ink to get the obsidian-like sparkle in his peepers.
This was my first experience with laid paper. If you’re not familiar with the term, laid paper has ridges in it that are the result of the manufacturing process. It was the usual type of once until it was gradually replaced by wove paper wove paper which has a uniform surface without lines. I learned that recently when I’d been reading a lot of those little signs next to the art at museums that describe what you’re looking at. A lot of them said “ink on white laid paper” or “printed on cream laid paper,” etc. I took out my phone and educated myself a bit. Thanks, Wikipedia!
My advice for laid art paper: Yes, when you see it on clearance for just 15 cents, by all means buy it. Just don’t try to use colored pencil on it. It was a bit like drawing on fine-whale corduroy and those ridges showed through unless I really pressed down hard. This work in progress detail photo shows pretty well what I was dealing with:
I was very happy with the finished work. My friend who commissioned it got a little choked up when I showed her. Her husband who received it for Christmas gave me a hug and thanked me the next time he saw me. I’ll call that a success! Here’s how they framed it:
If anyone else is interested in a pet portrait, I am open to doing more commissions. Valentine’s day would be a great time to surprise your sweetheart with a portrait of his or her special furry friend. Contact me for details.
A bonus chuckle — This is what my cat thinks of dog art: