Oh deer....I mean Meerkat. That stinkeye and those ears! This Fursday, meet Meerkat. He's new to Rescue One so I don't know much about him yet except that he's a cutie and I couldn't resist painting him.
Since I don't have much info on Meerkat's background, I thought I'd give a little glimpse into how I make these Fursday paintings. Recently someone asked me about my painting process from idea to finished painting. I don't really have a set process for most of my paintings but I do for my Fursday series. I'm committed to making 50 Fursday paintings and I'd like for them all to be similar so that calls for a set process...
First I choose a dog. I make my decision based on the photos available and the dog's story.
Then I draw the dog's silhouette on a wood panel. All my Fursday paintings are on 6x6 inch wood panels.
*This week I originally selected a different dog. I drew the silhouette and realized that it looked awkward. At that point, I decided to erase and switch to a dog with a photo that had a better pose. I've learned that a good painting needs a good silhouette. If I don't like it at this point, then I probably won't be happy with it at the finish either.
Next I gesso in the silhouette. I like to keep the background empty so that it shows the wood grain. It's also an easy way to tie together all my paintings into a series.
Then I draw in the eyes, nose, and areas of light and shadow.
I choose a few colors and start mixing. I like to choose at least one unexpected color for some constrast/pop. I paint in the different areas. Sometimes I get a color just right but often I adjust the colors as I go so some areas will have several layers/washes.
Usually I take a break when I feel like it's almost done. That way when I come back, I have fresh eyes and often know just how to finish.
The whole process take an hour or two and I almost always make the painting on Thursday/Fursday. If I try to paint it ahead of time, then the dog will get adopted--Murphy's Law I think. Hmm, come to think of it maybe that would work out better for the dogs/rescues. :)
So there's your behind the scenes look. Now go check out Meerkat and all the other dogs available at Rescue One. Recently Rescue One took in 15 animals in just two days! They really need our help. They have puppies with parvo and dogs that need surgery. If you can contribute, even just a few dollars, it will help dogs that need urgent care. There's a fund set up here.