When I started my pet portrait business in 2011, I received one of my first pet portrait commissions of a dog named, Jessie. The client ordered the painting as a surprise gift for her partner, and a back and forth gifting of my custom artwork between the couple ensued (adorable, right?). Not to mention, many, many, referrals.... I am so lucky to have such supportive patrons! Below are the paintings I completed for this particular couple at the beginning of my pet portrait career: 

Jessie.jpg

 

Flash forward to 2015!! Lots has happened since I first received these early commissions (biggest understatement of the year). I received an email from the client who commissioned the portrait of Jessie:

...Sadly, Jessie passed away last week. She was a terrific dog - incredibly well traveled. [Her owner] took her everywhere - beaches, forests, mountains. I was thinking of having another small portrait done in her memory.  I'm thinking the same size as the others for Bo and Jessie. I thought perhaps the attached image would be good - it shows her lovingly looking up at [her owner] while we are on a gondola. Do you think this would make a good portrait?

I literally started to tear up when I read this. Four years really have gone by quickly! The description of Jessie's life was so beautifully written. A whirlwind of emotions hit me when I saw the photo of Jessie she wanted to have me paint. It perfectly illustrates the relationship between Jessie and her human, and the intense emotion between them. There is nothing that compares to that adoring, faithful gaze, and I couldn't imagine a better photograph to work from to commemorate her life. 

Here is my artistic interpretation of the photo:

I adapted the photograph to fit in my style and to match the other paintings, but I hope this photograph is framed and hung in a special place in their home, as the context (the gondola, and the position of Jessie next to her owner) is such an important part of this photograph. Rest in Peace sweet Jessie... I hope there is an infinite number of squirrels to chase, treats, and belly rubs over that rainbow bridge!

 

In 2012, about one year after I started my pet portrait business, I came up with the idea of using my French Easel to do "live-painting" in public places as a way to promote my art. I contacted the owners of Durty Harry's dog boutique/dog-wash in Brookline to see if they would like to host my very first "live-painting" event, and that was the beginning of an incredible business relationship/friendship!  Along with hosting many Pawblo events, they have also commissioned me to do some sign-painting, which was my foray into freelance art. 

If you've been to either Durty Harry's locations, you may recognize some of my art hanging on the walls. Harry, (the business's namesake), being one of my models. 

Michelle and Alley (co-owners) do an incredible job of learning their four-legged clients' names and personalities, and have built a fabulous supportive community around their Brookline and Charlestown locations over the past 6 years. They're very hip to the dog community and definitely have their fingers on the pulse when it comes to addressing a serious need within the industry. 

safe_image.jpeg

I am very excited to share with you all an incredible new app, Slobbr, that is being developed for all of us dog lovers! My good friend from Durty Harry's, Michelle Fournier, has been developing this idea for over 2 years and now it is SO close to fruition!

The app is called, "Slobbr" (LOVE the name), and it will be an iOS app to help you find local places that allow you to "Live Life with Your Dog!" Perhaps you're traveling with your dog and you want to find an awesome dog-park, or a restaurant that has a "Yappy Hour." Similar to Yelp, this app is designed to grow with user interaction, and will only continue getting better with use. Michelle and her team are looking to Kickstarter to put things in motion, and they're offering some pretty awesome incentives for helping out. I would really appreciate if you checked it out and at the very least shared it with your friends.... The clock is ticking!

While planning my West Coast Tour to promote my business two summers ago, I would have LOVED to have this app. I was on the constant lookout for animal friendly businesses, and different dog-parks to check out. I know that when the app is finally released, I'll be contributing to it all the time and adding my own reviews! 

Check out this AMAZING promo video.... I can't watch it enough-- so cute!


Durty Harry's has hosted me innumerable times for events, and I am wholly indebted to their support of my art and business as I have grown from a novice artist into the true professional that I am today. In those years, I have heard Michelle's passion and zeal to create a platform to help you "Live Life With Your Dog." Now that I have started to gain first-hand experience of having a dog around through my dog-sitting ventures with Rover.com, I know how valuable this is! 


Thank you for taking the time to read this... PLEASE SUPPORT THIS CAMPAIGN. SHARING IS JUST AS HELPFUL AS DONATING! 

Thank you xoxoxoxo

<3 Pawblo


Source: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/slobb...

Earlier this Summer, an organization called, "Dogs for Conservation" reached out to me and asked me if I would be willing to donate a painting to them. I was thrilled at this idea because I had actually heard of dogs being used for conservation efforts and I thought it was a really amazing idea. I had heard a story of dogs that were trained to smell and track down whale feces floating in the ocean near Alaska. Conservationists and ecologists were looking for the whale feces in order to get a better understanding of the whale's diet and track their movements to try to pinpoint factors affecting their dwindling population. The dogs involved were psyched! Dogs have an amazing sense of smell and tracking down the whale feces is like a game for them. I love the idea that dogs can be used to help with the populations of endangered species. Check out the website for "Dogs for Conservation," find them on facebook, and support this cause! Here is a link to the blog they wrote about me on their website: Dogs for Conservation

 

This is the painting I did for them of their new dog being trained, "Bea." I'm pretty sure this is my favorite painting so far and now I'm thinking about getting a Springer Spaniel for myself when that day comes :)

Hello all!  I updated my website and facebook with the latest photos of paintings I've been doing.  The photo competition is in full swing and it's going very well-- keep it up! Here is a picture of "Peter."  He is my dog nephew.  I painted him for my sister for her birthday this past weekend. Peter was actually the first dog I ever painted and the reason behind my idea to start this business! The new style is "closeups." What do you think?

 

We have reached the conclusion of our first competition!  It was pretty fun and I've definitely learned some things along the way for future competitions (stay tuned). In the end I decided to award the first, second, and third place winners.  

Coming in first place with 88 votes winning a FREE 8x10 portrait is Max! What a beautiful dog!

 

Coming in second place, with 68 votes, is Shorty! His owner will get 50% off any painting size! Shorty will look GREAT in painted form!

Coming in third place, with 56 votes was Maggie! Her lucky owner will get 20% off any size painting!  Maggie will make a wonderful model!

 

Congratulations to all of the winners and thank you to everyone who participated!  Stay tuned for future competitions!!

 

I just finished two paintings of golden retrievers! They were a surprise birthday gift for a customer's mother. The paintings ended up turning out great but i must say, I probably have the hardest time capturing their coloring out of all the other breeds!  Hopefully sometime down the road I will be a master retriever painter.  Until that time check out Martha and George:

I have decided to have a pet photo competition!  Enter your favorite photo of your pet on the promotions section of my facebook page for a chance to win a FREE 8x10 custom painting!  Hurry up--the entries for this competition are filling up quickly! Get on Facebook and VOTE!