Pet Portraits

A Christmas gift for a client's husband in memory of Margot the cocker spaniel

How do we, as a culture, capture our memories? Since the late 1800's it has been primarily through the snapshot, thanks to our good friends at Kodak who invented the hand held camera so many years ago. And despite the digital craze making film nearly extinct, or at least "retro", snapshots are still how we capture our memories and are still our go-to when we want to feel nostalgic. So, being a painter of memories, my true subject is sometimes more about the snapshot as an object and less about what the snapshot depicts. And this is why, on the few occasions I have gotten requests for pet portraits, I am able to reconcile myself with painting them. After all, pets are a huge part of our universal experience and pets mean an awful lot to the people that care for them. Truthfully, the idea of doing a pet portrait in the traditional sense doesn't really jazz me. But when the subject is the snapshot and the purpose is for nostalgia, all of a sudden the prospect of painting animals becomes a lot more appealing and the work can be quite interesting. A painting has a sense of substantial permanence that snapshots do not. A portrait has the amazing ability to capture and preserve the essence of someone (or some dog!) in a tangible, authentic way that a snapshot can lack.

Felicia for a friend who missed her terribly once she was gone

For a client who's cat still wreaks havoc on her morning routine

A little portrait of my departed Eleanor that hangs in my bedroom

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