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Saturday, March 13, 2010

No Such Thing as Personal Space

Dog Eyed, acrylic on board, approx 4x6.5", 2010, $85
Talk about extreme close-ups. I wanted to capture the playful quality of pups; always jumping in your lap and trying to clean your teeth. This little fellow, however, just appears to be having a show down with the viewer, waiting to see if you'll blink first. I only had a sliver of negative space in the top right corner to add an element of interest, which I did by throwing in some rather intense green. I also really like the reflected light shown in the lips of the dog. I think that's cool....but then again I am probably extra nerdy when it comes to looking at my own art. - Jared

Friday, March 12, 2010

Yo Quiero Mas!!

All Bark, acrylic on board, 6x8", 2010 SOLD
(scroll below to purchase)

WOW....check out those colors!!! Of course everyone thinks all Chihuahuas are adorable (with rare exceptions that win World's Ugliest Dog contests and whose appearence leaves us in cold sweats at night). I personally find them absolutely ANNOYING!!!! It's the incessant barking, ergo the title of the piece. But whether you find them irresistibly bearable or akin to rodents, this painting is easily appreciated in my opinion. I was eager to make use of some Naples Yellow and the colors in this little runt's coat were a great cool contrast to the neutral Naples Yellow. I really tried to emphasize the eyes, adding plenty of detail. Tell me what you think - yea or nay on the Chihuahua's? - Jared

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Mr. Bluetick....the Coonhound

Barking Up the Right Tree, acrylic on board, 11x23", 2010 $450
(Scroll below to purchase)

Detail of Bluetick Coon Hound

Detail of raccoon vignette

This is one of my most favorite paintings as of late. Sometimes it's not hard to let a painting go; other times you want to keep everything that you crank out. I really found this piece entertainingly complex. The tick patterned coat on this hound was fun to recreate, first layering large areas of the dog's body with Payne's Grey and then overlaying those areas with Unbleached Titanium and various blue hues. There was also opportunity to throw in a little yellow ochre and raw sienna in spots.

The most strikingly different aspect of this piece is clearly the addition of the smaller vignette in the lower left corner. I am playing with this idea, which is an attempt to add an extra element of interest as well as filling the painting with pertinent information related to the dog breed itself. This dog is notorious for being a masterful varmint hunter, most notably for chasing raccoons into trees prior to the fatal shots of the hunter. I think I like the vignette and will probably try to work them in subsequent paintings. Let me know what your opinion is if you'd like. - Jared

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

The Year of the Dog

Year of the Dog, acrylic on board, 6x6", 2010 SOLD

When I started this painting I really wanted to have something with intense red. Naturally, communist China came to mind which led me directly to a Pug. But as we see, Pugs don't like communism, as evident in the "Please take me away from here" plea in the little puppy's eyes. I have been lured to anything gilded for quite some time now and have enjoy adding gold leaf and metallic paints to my art whenever possible. I find the added glimmer from the metallic addition infuses a new element to viewing the work. I saw an opportunity to place a little gold enamel paint in the background, sticking with the koi fish icon and traditional Chinese motifs around the edges. It turned this painting into a buffet calendar relic. I really like it . . . . and starting to crave egg rolls. - Jared

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Naturally Heated Floors

Floored, acrylic on board, 6x6", 2010 SOLD
(scroll below to purchase)

How can you not relate to this lazy mutt? It's amazing to me how as an animal owner you can begin to understand the conversations that are emitted from the eyes of your furry friends. I imagine this K9 is telling us that he's done for the day. Whether that's due to exhaustion or depression, I guess I'll never really know (both are kinda plausible in the dog's visage).

Sometimes I get the strong urge to lay on a hard floor (carpeted works too) just to straighten my back a bit. The risk is getting too comfortable and falling asleep, usually while watching a movie or TV. Then it's like your own slow-motion horror flick as you try to get up, complete with grunting, brief screams and zombie-like speed. - Jared

Monday, March 8, 2010

A Painting for Will

acrylic on board, 24x18", 2010, NFS

My wife and I have some very special friends and a few of them are the Prestridge family. The patriarch of the family, Jesse, is an old friend of mine. We use to be room mates for a time after I came home from serving a two year proselytizing mission for my church. Over the years I have really valued the blessing of having a friend like Jesse in whom I can share my thought and seek advice when needed. Unfortunately as life sometimes goes, I find it hard to stay in touch like I should and regret the days that fly by without hanging out with old friends. Fortunately for Jesse, the guilt of not keeping in touch often leads me to giving a nice piece of art to him and his family. This painting kinda falls into that category.

Jesse's wife called me and wanted to know if I could put together a simply jersey painting to be placed in his son-on-the-way's room before May. She described something very fitting for a newborn's room but I instantly thought about giving them something that hopefully the son, Will, would love to have hanging throughout all his years. So I developed this composition based from various photo references. The numbers on the jerseys represent all three of little Will's initials. Now the only job left to do is to ensure that Will grows up to be a War Eagle fan; anything less will be very offensive! Here's to meaningful friendships - Jared

Sunday, March 7, 2010

The Dog Bone

Dog Bone, acrylic on board, 12x12", 2010, $250
(scroll below to purchase)

This painting started with a brilliant teal tone all over the board which ended up showing through in the shadows on the ground and slightly in the shadows of the hound dog. This piece was more a palette for different techniques than paint. I was able to scratch and cut and use sand paper on the painting, along with the usual washes, glazes and impasto. After adding the markings to the background and placing the bone image in the upper right corner the whole piece took on a slight urban art look, kinda like graffiti. I think the colors are very entertaining.

Saturday, March 6, 2010

The Ladies Man

Long Walks on the Beach, acrylic on board, 6x6", 2010 SOLD

This is the first of the pet portraits which I started after several portrait commissions of individuals. It was a great way to wind down and recapture my creative juices. Because this was the first in the series of animal paintings, I used mainly the left over colors on my palette from the last portrait commission of Obama. (I guess you could say I "spread the 'pigment' wealth around" from one painting to the next)

This little guy looked like a stud posting a profile pic on some doggie dating site. I could easily imagine the cliched line "I like long walks on the beach" being listed in his "likes" box. The more I think about it there were probably other likes listed which didn't help in the dating quest for this little fellow, such as "I like to pee on tires" and "I eat my poop".

Nonetheless, I really dig this painting. What say you? - Jared

Friday, March 5, 2010

Man's Best Friend

Dog Tired, acrylic on board, approx. 12x24", 2010 $500
(scroll below to purchase)
After portrait after portrait I have ventured back into the animal portraiture. I have had several odds and ends pieces of wood lying around the studio, as I am sure every artist does, and have had several photo references of animals which I have wanted to incorporate into my artwork. I have painted several of these whimsical pet portraits just for my enjoyment and will begin posting them from here on out. In addition to being a relaxing activity, the color schemes are based in earth tones, which tend to be the most inexpensive pigments to purchase, so that's a bonus. I hope you enjoy this first of the pet series, one to which I think we have all related after an especially hard day at work. - Jared