This simple portrait was a gift from one friend to another of her dog, Clifford. One of the rare portraits done from one photo—because that was all she could find to use for the surprise—I didn’t have too much other information and met with a bit of a block. Clifford’s pose is typical, in context, with paws hanging off the couch, but we would be doing a basic portrait just about 10″ x 12″ with only the subject so we actually wouldn’t have a couch. Normally I can work from just a few photos to completely change the pose but in Clifford’s case, with his black and white spots going in all directions, I didn’t have the photos I needed and couldn’t make it up. So Clifford ended up kind of hanging in air.
However, I worked in a bit of a resting spot for Clifford. In all portraits and especially these small ones I ask for a favorite or preferred color for the background. In this case the the recipient liked purple, so as I worked the background tones in I also worked in a rough indication of a couch or chair for Clifford to hang his paws off of.
Below a closeup of Clifford’s sweet face. I love his big ears falling all over the place and his playful expression.
I was working on this portrait in April 2005, and remember enjoying the purple during the early spring, and also the looseness of the background, blending purple, violet and indigo to give the purple background more interest, and even adding touches of pale violet for highlights, using the side of the pastel to cover large areas and not blending. I’d usually not done that in portraits and it felt daring at that time. Now I enjoy loosening up some areas in portraits. Unfortunately I only photographed Clifford with my basic 2MP digital camera, and this is the greatest level of detail I can show.
An Article on My Creative Process
If you enjoy reading about how I create my artwork, you’ll enjoy an article by The Musings of a Crazy Cat Lady author Stephanie Newman, “Cats Gave Artist Bernadette E. Kazmarski Her Calling”. Thank you, Stephanie!
Take a look at other portraits and read other stories
Read articles here on The Creative Cat featuring current and past commissioned portraits.
Read about how I create commissioned portraits.
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Visit my website to see portraits of my cats, commissioned cats, commissioned dogs, people and a demonstration of how I put a portrait together from photos.
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My brochure is an 8.5″ x 11″ two-page full-color PDF that half-folds when it’s all printed out, showing examples of portraits with an explanation of my process and basic costs.
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I offer gift certificates for portraits in any denomination beginning at $125.00, which is the basic cost of a portrait; the recipient is responsible for any amount the portrait costs over $125.00.
The certificate itself is 8.5″ x 11″ and features a collage of portrait images with the recipient’s and giver’s names, printed on parchment cover stock. The whole thing is packaged in a pocket folder and includes a brochure, a letter from me to the recipient and several business cards.The certificate package can be easily mailed or wrapped as a gift and shipped directly to your recipient.
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Portrait certificates are a minimum of $125.00 because that is the minimum cost of a portrait.
Certificates are good for up to one year after issue.
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All images used on this site are copyrighted to Bernadette E. Kazmarski unless otherwise noted and may not be used without my written permission. Please ask if you are interested in using one in a print or internet publication. If you are interested in purchasing a print of this image or a product including this image, check my Etsy shop or Fine Art America profile to see if I have it available already. If you don’t find it there, visit Ordering Custom Artwork for more information on a custom greeting card, print or other item.