So I mentioned in my weekly ‘Other News’ blog that I was going to do a blog dedicated to the watercolour pet portraits I have this week. Or I should say Jolly Splashes pet portraits. The reason being as I am learning this new skill it is hard to write about it in detail as to be honest I seem to just see what happens. The technique is definitely being refined, bit still needs some perfecting. Also they tend to be quicker and taking stage by stage photos of the paintings is quite hard as most of the time I like to get the watercolour down in one session. This would make the blogs very short and probably slightly pointless at the moment I did one for each commission!

So there you have it. You have a whole blog this week dedicated to all my Jolly Splashes work! It’s mainly dogs. No, wait, I did the horse Dollar last week didn’t I? So it’s all dogs. That’s OK because we love our furry, woofing friends don’t we!

First up this week is Rocket. Sadly crossed the rainbow Bridge now, Rocket was a Patterdale terrier. Being a black dog, apart from his chest and beard, I reached for my signature black, blues, purples and magentas for black dogs. I will try some other combinations out soon, when my confidence grows.

Below the photo shows the paint after it has gone down. I know waiting for him dry before I add the pen. The black pen really seems to make the colours pop. Oh and actually posting this I realise I missed off his eyes. Funny, I always do those first with my pastel pet portraits but last with these. Odd.

Watercolour painting of a patterdale terrier in progress, Using pinks, blues and purples. Pen outline to be added when dry.

I have now added the eyes in and the pen, but I really need to view this handsome chap in the daylight now. Some how artificial light, even if a daylight lamp just dulls the watercolours and subdues the white. I really think you cannot appreciate the vibrancy of these until you view them in the flesh. My scans certainly do a better job of showing them than the samsung phone camera anyway! So you will have to wait a bit to see the finished portrait 🙂

I have to say it’s nice to get loose and splashy with Jolly Splashes. Feeling a bit of pent up frustration with an unfortunate encounter while out. It made my mood dip and feel quite unmotivated. However a good walk with the dogs gave me a lovely reset and I came back raring to go with a double dog portrait. I am currently waiting for the two subjects to dry. I made it a little to wet so I can’t move it and start the next so I will go on to packing Bessie’s portrait next. That will be the 4th portrait off to the post office this week. It will be tomorrow now. I think I was optimistic to get it out today….. Then my job lists are always optimistic.

Here is the outline of the duo.

More and these and Rocket’s painting later. I can feel the suspense ?

Stage two, the watercolour has been applied. Now I find this the tricky stage. Sometimes it can be hard to see if it will turn out how I want it to. Sometimes it looks fab and I add the pen and I am not quite sure, or I hate, and when I say hate this stage, I mean it, and then I add the pen and it completely changes it. Currently I am happy with how the watercolour has gone down. And it has formed some really lovely little areas interest. Random way the watercolours blend that I have found happens only with them. No other medium will create these patterns. Not that I have found anyway.

So you have now seen then watercolour stage of both of these dog paintings. Now it is for the magic ingredient, the pen. I actually want a slightly thinner pen I think, I like the 0.5 pen, but for these works I think I may try a thinner one on my orangutan painting that I have planned. This is a whole other idea I have been brewing since reading about them potentially being extinct in 10 years.

Any how, I digressed slightly, as I like to do, here are the portraits with pen. First up is Rocket.

For Rockets portrait I used my favoured blues, purples, some prussian green and magenta. These tend to be my go to colours for black dogs. He is a a patterdale terrier. I hope I captured the cheeky look terriers seem to have! I think he is gorgeous and my client is over the moon!

Rocket, patterdale terrier dog portrait in watercolours and pen. Using purples, blues, and magenta

Next up is Winifred and Poppy, two more terriers. I love terriers. Being the owner of two it’s not surprising. Or should I say they own me. You will know what I am talking about if you have a terrier.

Poppy and Winifred, double terrier dog portrait in bright watercolours and pen.

Now I was a bit naughty this evening and decided to a take a break from the pet portraits, it does you good to do something that you can just have fun with, doesn’t matter if it goes right or wrong. Just have the pressure taken off you for a while.

I read a few days ago, in the Independent, that they have 10 years, not much more. We all know about their habitat being knocked down for palm oil, but it’s not just that. Either way it really touched me. My art helps the charity Mind so why can’t it help wildlife too.

I had no idea how this painting would turn out. I had a very vague idea in my head and I am actually really pleased with it.

GET OFF MY LAND – measures 10×10 inches and I will get prints done. A portion of which – tbc – will go to a charity that helps Orangutans, still to be decided. I have a couple in mind, just need to do a little research. He needs scanning in, but I hope you like him.

Baby orangutan painted in watercolours, reds, and oranges, yellows and browns with a pen outline.