A bit about how I started
I have always loved art, but it wasn’t until around 2016 that I tried painting one of my dogs in arylic, and I was hooked. It’s not a particulary good painting but I was so pleased with it at the time. I wondered what else I could achieve, I never thought I’d be able to become a full time animal portrait artist!
Henry - my first animal portrait
My first attempt at a dog portrait. Our lovely Henry.
After the smaller test I decided to have another go at painting Henry and did so on a larger canvas.
I was still quite slow to start my next piece, which I think was around a year later. While this seems a long time now, I was running my own business and the time was flying. My next painting was a pink peony which was from a lovely photo my friend Michelle took for me.
Seascape at Sunset
My next piece was inspired by a fantastic photo my talented son took on his way home from work. I love colourful images and this included my favourite colours, I just had to paint it.
Poppy - dog portrait in acrylics
I was still working full time and didn't have enough spare moments to paint, which I found very frustrating. My next animal portrait was my beautiful girl, Poppy.
I had sewn professionally for around 15 years and I was inspired by a quilt artist who does beautiful work. However, I have never done any quilting, and so I started experimenting with how I could find my own way to work with mixed media. I worked on a Kingfisher first and was quite pleased with how it turned out (see photo below). Consequently, I decided to use the same photo of Poppy and to try her in mixed media.
I started to try to paint more, but progress was still very slow. However, I did do some pet portrait commissions through word of mouth.
At the start of 2018 I had problems with my arm caused by repetitive strain injury through the work I was doing.
As a result of this, it gave me the push I needed and toward the end of the year, I was lucky enough to be able to take the step to become a full time animal portrait artist.