Monday, October 23, 2006

Labrador Retriever Portrait Painting

Here is my latest Labrador Retriever portrait painting and the reference picture I used to paint it. This is my own Lab, Eponine. She is such a sweetie. I taught her (and Obi) to cock her head on the cue "What do you think?" with clicker training when she was a puppy. She has used it on me to great advantage for years since I find it hard to resist her cute face. She plays every unsuspecting push-over she can when we have company or she is out in public. Eponine is definately a professional begger!

This painting is acrylic on a 16" x 20" stretched canvas. I enjoyed working on this size after doing smaller pictures of dogs recently. Prints and other products with this Lab painting are available through my OtterTail Art for Dog Lovers Shop.

Eponine's mother is my Gwendolyn, who is 11 years old (Obi's sister). Gwen has developed vestibular disease over the past couple of months. Her bloodwork is normal so my vet is suspecting she had some strokes. Unlike vestibular syndrome, vestibular disease comes on gradually and may continue to get worse rather than better. It is a problem with the middle ear which helps us maintain our balance, so dogs with vestibular problems are dizzy. They stagger, circle and pace, and may fall often. Gwen banged her head hard about 20 months ago and it caused nerve damage. That side of her head is sunken in and she required eye surgery in September because of it. I am suspicious that her vestibular disease is related to the injury as well. I would like to ask anyone who reads this to send positive thoughts for my Gwendolyn, that she may get better and enjoy her days again. Thank you for your kindness.

Enjoy your beloved friends everyday. You never know what the future holds or how much time you will have together. Take pictures or paint portraits to help hold them in your eye as well as you hold them in your heart. And give thanks for every day you have to share.

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Spooky Ghost Dog!

Happy Halloween! The scarey date is fast approaching. Here is my spooky Halloween Ghost Dog design to help celebrate the holiday. Well, maybe this yellow Labrador Retriever is not really a spooky ghost, but you know he means business when he asks for a pumpkin full of treats! I created this fun picture as an original watercolor painting. Now it is available on greeting cards, shirts, tote bags to hold tons of treats, mugs for sipping gruel and lots of other fun products through my OtterTail Art for Dog Lovers Shop. Click here for spooky Labrador Halloween fun!

This is what the OtterTail Labrador Retrievers really love about Halloween. They are not allowed to have candy, but each dog gets their own pumpkin to "carve". In this photo our Brutus chose a particularly large pumpkin when no on was looking, but I caught him "red pawed" and here's the photo evidence to prove it. Most years I grow the miniature pumpkins in my garden so there are plenty of small tasty ones to go around.