Bodie and Bear Bear Are Ready to Go Home

bodie and bear final portrait

Bodie and Bear Bear final portrait

I have completed and framed this portrait, and it’s off to its people to be a surprise holiday gift.

Bodie face

Bodie's face

You can read more about the background on it in my first post, and the fact that the husband is returning the favor to his wife, who commissioned me to do a portrait several years ago.

I had gotten a pretty good start in the first draft, but if you look closely you’ll see a lot more fur this time, and more detail generally.

Bear's face

Bear's face

The portrait is 18″ wide by 14″ tall, and the dogs’ faces a pleasantly big, large enough to work good detail around the eyes and on their noses. Working the fur on subjects this large is a little more time consuming, especially with long-haired animals such as these. I start with general areas of color to mark where the shadows and highlights are, but then I layer other tints and hues over that and the final top color in wisps, blended with my fingers. This is what gives the fur the depth and texture while maintaining the right coloration.

I really enjoy dog’s noses—there’s so much going on there! And in an extreme close-up you see so many different-colored hairs and whiskers of every length.

Read the details of building the portrait and the people who commissioned me in my first post.

I can’t wait to hear what the recipient has to say, and I’ll be sad to see them go so soon!

Read more about my animal portraiture.


6 Comments on “Bodie and Bear Bear Are Ready to Go Home”

  1. […] don’t know if you remember this portrait from last fall. It’s Bodie and Bear Bear and was a surprise Christmas gift to a wife from her husband, a couple for whom I’d done a […]

  2. Marg says:

    That is a terrific painting. Those people just have to love it. I love the way you get the expression in their eyes and all the different colors of their furs on their faces. Great work Bernadette. Hope you have a great Tuesday.

    • animalartist says:

      Marg, thanks! I’ve been in touch with the couple’s daughter (more computer savvy), and she said it was a scene her parents saw every day when they came home–I’m so glad I painted in the rug and the floor! It wouldn’t have been the same for them without it. It looked wonderful with the mat and frame.

  3. animalartist says:

    Thanks! For most portraits people want all the details and it’s nice to work at that level of detail now and then.

  4. […] Read the rest of the story and notes about how I paint a portrait and specifically this one in Meet Bodie and Bear Bear, and the final details in Bodie and Bear Bear Are Ready to Go Home. […]

  5. I HAVE CAT says:

    Bernadette – i thought this was a photograph! amazing work!


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