Paintings With Soul

Since October 2006 I've been a daily painter, creating a new pet portrait at least 5 times per week. Over the years I've expanded my offerings to include a variety of animals, pets, race horses, children and other treasured heirlooms. In addition, I accept a limited number of commissions each year.

In 2015 I am honored to be the Kentucky Derby Artist.

You may use the links below right to receive my daily paintings via email or to follow my blog with a feed. I post additional info, including in-process jpgs and other related information, on the studio Facebook page as well.

Meanwhile, thanks
so much for your continued support of my artwork.

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Palominos



FROM TOP: "Looking Back (Palomino)" and "Palomino Profile," both 4" x 5", acrylic palomino equine paintings in acrylic on canvasboard, $114 each. Because these pieces look exquisite together and I would love to see them stay that way, I'll bundle the purchase of both into $215. Inquiries to ksantini@turtledovedesigns.com .
BOTH SOLD.

I am thrilled with these paintings, as they summarize, even in their petite and intimate sizes, all that I've learned this last year.

EDGES: See how there are soft and hard edges? I've learned that even though my photo references contain all hard edges (well, ideally they do!), that I can manipulate the crispness of an edge to produce a variety of form and shape, and build a sense of depth inside the picture plane.

VALUE: Because I often work from photos, it's been a challenge for me to separate the sharp contrast of a photo reference from the reality of how my eye would see the horse. In reality the strongest contrast/difference in values is often right in the foreground. I controlled that nicely in these paintings, with the density of the eye and muzzle firmly anchoring the horses right in front of the viewer, while the background softly receeds.

COLOR: Even though the color is very soft in both paintings, there are tight punches of stronger color in the focal areas. I'm getting better at a controlled use of strong color, and supplementing that with a harmonious background. This was probably the hardest lesson for me to learn, as I am a sucker for bold and saturated color, and rarely used grays or neutrals in my paintings. Introducing those has made a big difference!

Thanks, as always, for looking.
And of course you may forward these paintings to your friends and family.
Take care,
Kim

PS I learned this morning that Hotmail has implemented a new delivery system for their emails, and somehow my domain name "TurtledoveDesigns" has gotton onto their list of junk email abusers. I am working to get that corrected asap, but wanted to give you a heads up that if you are expecting email correspondance from me and do not receive it, please shoot me an email note with alternative contact information (another email address or a phone number).

For that matter, if you have commissioned a dog-a-day portrait and your contact information has changed (like your email address), it would be great to give me a heads up as well. I had one client who did so earlier this week (THANK YOU!!), and her note opened my eyes - that could be why I've been unable to connect with a couple others who have been waiting 5 months+ for their portraits. Their turn is coming up, yet I have no materials to build their painting from, and my email inquiries have gotten no response to date!!

I am fairly certain that other groups will follow in the footsteps of Hotmail, so it would behoove us all to pay a little more attention to every aspect of our email correspondance (I know I rely on it for just about everything anymore!!). Thanks so much!!

Who'd'a thunk that I needed all these software and computer troubleshooting skills just to paint pretty pictures?!
Have a great day!! Kim

Kimberly Kelly Santini
http://www.turtledovedesigns.com/
distinctive pet portraits
& 4-legged paintings

http://www.paintingadogaday.com/
come. sit. stay.
enjoy the art.

Founding member of the Canine Art Guild
http://www.canineartguild.com/
the gateway to canine art on the web

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

"Kentucky Skyline"


"Kentucky Skyline," 8" x 16", acrylic on canvasboard, equine landscape painting. Inquiries to ksantini@turtledovedesigns.com.

The Kentucky bluegrass area has to be, in all seriousness, one of the most beautiful areas of the country. I visited two springs ago, and my head still swims from all I saw. The landscape undulates in every direction, dotted with horses and outlines with pristine fencing or ancient stone walls, graced with the sun's smile and gentle breezes. I wanted to paint a landscape today that nodded to all I remembered from Kentucky.

I've been looking at Wayne Thiebaud's landscape paintings which are aerial typographical sorts of maps, where each field or element has a separate and distinct shape and bright color. Obviously there is some influece creeping in from these. I also interested in intentionally placing the horizon line at the center of the canvas (a supposed "no-no" rule).

I had tried a similar composition on a much larger scale (see "Double Horizon" from last summer at http://www.turtledovedesigns.com/canvases_available_for_purchase.html), but was concentrating on color temperatures and the push and pull created by the horse in the extreme foreground and the landscape in the far distance. "Double Horizon" is more about the horse (well, there's much more of his body included, for one) and less about the space he lives in.

Even though this painting features a horse in the foreground, it's really all about the background landscape. I treated the landscape bit of the painting as I might an abstract painting (did you know that I painted huge abstract paintings for about 7 years?). I studied the colors and shapes more carefully once I got the values correct, and tweaked them just a bit to balance their aesthetics without losing any of the realism, enjoying the pattern they created.

Thanks, as always, for looking at these paintings and for sharing them with your friends and family.
See you tomorrow!
Kim

Kimberly Kelly Santini
http://www.turtledovedesigns.com/
distinctive pet portraits
& 4-legged paintings

http://www.paintingadogaday.com/
come. sit. stay.
enjoy the art.

Founding member of the Canine Art Guild
http://www.canineartguild.com/
the gateway to canine art on the web

Monday, April 28, 2008


"Lucy," 8" x 10", commissioned pet portrait of a lab mix, acrylic on board, private collection (THANK YOU!).

Lucy was acquired through a carefully orchestrated trade - a firetruck for a puppy. It was the largest firetruck the toy store had, but Lucy's family came way out ahead of the game.

Lucy was the gentlest creature around, and loved pleasing everyone and enjoying every aspect of life, down to the tiniest details. Car rides, boat rides, ducks, squirrels, lizards. Lucy even had the same squeaky toy for 14 years (I wonder if that little boy could say the same about his firetruck?).

She is sorely missed by her family, despite the efforts of new puppy Sophie. I was touched to have the honor of including Lucy in the Painting a Dog a Day project.

Proceeds from the sale of Lucy's portrait support Best Friends Animal Sanctuary in Utah (http://www.bestfriends.org/). The same goes for Sophie, when her turn comes up (we shall see if she's grown into Lucy's shoes, or gotten a big ole' pair of her own instead!)

Thanks, as always, for looking.
And for sharing and forwarding these stories on to your friends and family.
See you tomorrow,
Kim

Kimberly Kelly Santini
http://www.turtledovedesigns.com/
distinctive pet portraits
& 4-legged paintings

http://www.paintingadogaday.com/
come. sit. stay.
enjoy the art.

Founding member of the Canine Art Guild
http://www.canineartguild.com/
the gateway to canine art on the web

Friday, April 25, 2008


FROM LEFT: "Paratrooper Puppy I," 6" x 12"; "Paratrooper Puppy II," 8" x 10"; "Paratrooper Puppy III," 12" square. All in acrylic on board. Each painting depicts a vintage Fisher Price Little People dog with a Fisher Price Adventure Family parachute (there's also actually a zip-tied involved, too, but I used artistic license and painted that out). Inquiries, including requests for higher resolution images, may come to ksantini@turtledovedesigns.com .

Yet another installment in the "Tags, Toys & Treasures" series of paintings. These were done for my client who is decorating her nursery with vintage toys and my paintings. Her most recent additions to the decor include one of these Paratroopers along with "Shooting the Rapids," which I posted on Monday. (Thank you, Kelly! I can't wait for you to unwrap these most recent two!! )

You should have seen this photo shoot - my 13 year old was getting into the challenge of hurling the paratrooper high enough that there would be enough ballast in the chute. Domenic tried launching from the treehouse (not high enough), with a slingshot (too fast), and from the top of a ladder (which sunk into wet ground and became dangerously unstable). Next he wanted to try the rooftop, but Mean Mom drew the line. He protested, "But this is for Art!" A very good argument, but I still didn't cave. At least he has his priorities straight, even if he has absolutely no sense of personal safety.

Meanwhile, I'm lying on the ground with my camera, scooting around, trying to shoot up into the parachute as it falls, giving him direction - "That one fell too twisted.... I really want the red section in the front.... try to throw it so there are trees in the background.... that better not have been dog poop I just scooted through...." (it was).

If our neighbors didn't think we were odd before, they definately do now!

If you are in the Detroit area, I'll have a booth at next month's Flower Fair and Art Show in downtown Lake Orion the weekend of May 17th-18th. You can stop by and grab a paratrooper painting for yourself (if any are left!), and go through a stash of other dog-a-day pieces, gallery stretched canvas paintings, limited edition giclees and notecards. I've been working like a mad woman, building inventory for several spring-time events coming up. Inquiries or questions can always come to me at ksantini@turtledovedesigns.com .

Thanks, as always, for looking. And for forwarding these paintings and stories to your friends and family.
Enjoy your weekend!
Kim

PS It's Derby Week next! Stay tuned - I'll be squeezing some equine works into the dog-a-day mix.

Kimberly Kelly Santini
http://www.turtledovedesigns.com/
distinctive pet portraits
& 4-legged paintings

http://www.paintingadogaday.com/
come. sit. stay.
enjoy the art.

Founding member of the Canine Art Guild
http://www.canineartguild.com/
the gateway to canine art on the web

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Daisy Mae's Bedhead


"Daisy Mae's Bedhead," 6"x8", commissioned dog portrait, terrier mix in acrylic on panel, private collection (THANK YOU!).

Daisy Mae started as a shelter stray, then was fostered by a rescue until she found her forever home (until recently, I really had no concept of how hard these rescues work, and HOW MANY little souls they save - how's about a round of applause for them!!).

Now Daisy Mae is busy operating a rescue of her own. She has adopted the feral cats in the neighborhood. She lets her family know when one (or more) is at the front door. The cats get a solid meal and some quality time with their terrier guardian. That's truly paying it forward!

Thanks as always for looking. And for sharing these stories and paintings with your friends and family.
I'll be back tomorrow with another painting,
Kim

Kimberly Kelly Santini
http://www.turtledovedesigns.com/
distinctive pet portraits
& 4-legged paintings

http://www.paintingadogaday.com/
come. sit. stay.
enjoy the art.

Founding member of the Canine Art Guild
http://www.canineartguild.com/
the gateway to canine art on the web

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Golden in the Snow (Sadie)


"Golden in the Snow (Sadie)," 8" square, commissioned golden retriever dog portrait, acrylic on board, private collection (THANK YOU!).

If you thought yesterday's Walker was a character, wait'll you meet his sister Sadie.

Sadie ruled the household for her first 3 years, entertaining the masses with her thievery. She will literally take shoes off feet, and steals napkins from laps at the dinner table.

Sadie and Walker instantly connected (of course!), and have been best friends from the second they met. They've also become partners in crime. You see, Walker opens the kitchen cabinets and pulls items out for Sadie to shred/chew/destroy. Sadie mothers and grooms Walker, and he sleeps protectively with his head resting on her.

They are quite the match.

Proceeds from the sale of Sadie's portrait will be donated to Best Friends Animal Sanctuary in Utah. I am very proud to support their efforts and help make a difference in a few animal's lives. If you mention Best Friends at the time you book your portrait, I'll donate proceeds from your painting as well. Inquiries may come to ksantini@turtledovedesigns.com .

Thanks, as always, for looking.
And for sharing these stories and paintings with your friends and family.
See you tomorrow,
Kim


Kimberly Kelly Santini
http://www.turtledovedesigns.com/
distinctive pet portraits
& 4-legged paintings

http://www.paintingadogaday.com/
come. sit. stay.
enjoy the art.

Founding member of the Canine Art Guild
http://www.canineartguild.com/
the gateway to canine art on the web

Tuesday, April 22, 2008


Walker (Boxer Study)," 6" x 8", commissioned pet portrait, acrylic on board, private collection (THANK YOU!).

Walker was a rescue. Abused by his first owners, Walker was in foster care when he got sight of his new "Mom" across the way. She was visiting her friend, who lived next door to Walker's foster home. Her visits were longer stays, and several months apart, as she had to travel a distance to visit her friend. Each time she showed up, Walker glued himself to her side. She debated adopting him, but had concerns because of another dog already at home (you'll meet Sadie tomorrow). After serveral visits, Walker seemed to understand her indecision, and sat patiently by her car as she was packing to leave. This time she did not waver in her decision to leave without him, although it was so tough. Three months later she returned, specifically to bring him home. She arrived late at night, and there he was, waiting in her friend's driveway. He knew all along she would come back. Just for him.

Moral of the story: Boxers tend to get their way in the end!

The sale of Walker's painting benefits Best Friends Animal Sanctuary (http://www.bestfriends.org/) in Utah.

Thanks, as always, for looking.
And for forwarding these stories and paintings on to your family and friends,
See you tomorrow!
Kim

Kimberly Kelly Santini
http://www.turtledovedesigns.com/
distinctive pet portraits
& 4-legged paintings

http://www.paintingadogaday.com/
come. sit. stay.
enjoy the art.

Founding member of the Canine Art Guild
http://www.canineartguild.com/
the gateway to canine art on the web

Monday, April 21, 2008

More from the Tags, Toys & Treasures series


CLOCKWISE, FROM UPPER LEFT: "Training Wheels," 6" x 6", depicting dog riding tricycle, acrylic on canvasboard, $149; "Spotty," 6" x 8", depicting vintage wheeled dalmation toy, acrylic on canvasboard, $199; "Shoot the Rapids," 4" x 8", depicting dog in kayak, acrylic on canvasboard, $149; "Dalmation Duckie," 4" x 5", rubber duck disguised as dalmation, acrylic on canvasboard, $114; "Puppy Kindergarten," 6" x 12", depicting dogs seated in schooldesks, acrylic on canvasboard, $219; .

A client has requested a handful of paintings from the "Tags, Toys & Treasures" series for her nursery. She gets first pick out of this group, but I'll be more than happy to create a wait list for anyone else interested. Inquiries (along with requests for higher resolution images) can come to ksantini@turtledovedesigns.com .

These little paintings star vintage toys, mostly Fisher Price Little People dogs and accessories. During the winter months I started painting the Fisher Price dogs as part of a still life assignment. I've enjoyed myself so much that the compositions keep on coming. Even worse - I'm now scouring garage sales and flea markets for more stuff to paint!

I welcome donations to the studio's "toy box." If you have a vintage toy something-or-other that you would like to see painted, drop me a line (ksantini@turtledovedesigns.com). We'll see if I have the item (Fisher Price pull dogs are multiplying like rabbits around these parts, and soon will take over the studio!). If not, we can make arrangements for you to loan your item to me.

A special welcome to all the new readers who found the Painting a Dog a Day project through the wonderful article in Saturday's (Detroit area) Oakland Press. I hope you enjoy the daily paintings, and please don't hesitate to direct questions to me at ksantini@turtledovedesigns.com .

Thanks, as always, for looking.
And for forwarding these paintings to your friends and family!
See you tomorrow,
Kim

Kimberly Kelly Santini
http://www.turtledovedesigns.com/
distinctive pet portraits
& 4-legged paintings

http://www.paintingadogaday.com/
come. sit. stay.
enjoy the art.

Founding member of the Canine Art Guild
http://www.canineartguild.com/
the gateway to canine art on the web

Friday, April 18, 2008

Workin on My Tan (Peanut #2)


"Working on My Tan (Peanut)," 8" x 16", terrier portrait in acrylic on canvasboard, $329. I was so excited about how the 2nd Peanut painting finished up that I had to share!

Peanut's Mom wants to wait till all 4 paintings are completed before choosing. So if you are interested in Peanut sunbathing, or Wednesday's couch potato, please send an email to ksantini@turtledovedesigns.com . I'll get wait lists started.

This composition will definately be revisited, in a gallery stretched canvas that is at least lifesized. I've always wanted to do an richly colored oriental rug in strong shadows. The trick will be finding (and photographing) a rug with just the right sort of patterning to compliment the dog's markings. I can always take artistic license and modify the dog's patches to mirror the pattern in the rug, too. It's something for my brain to work on during the coming weeks.

Ok, meanwhile it's back to the easel and another Peanut painting!!

It's always ok for you to forward these paintings and stories to your friends and family.
Take care,
Kim

Kimberly Kelly Santini
http://www.turtledovedesigns.com/
distinctive pet portraits
& 4-legged paintings

http://www.paintingadogaday.com/
come. sit. stay.
enjoy the art.

Founding member of the Canine Art Guild
http://www.canineartguild.com/
the gateway to canine art on the web

Belle, a Chocolate Lab



Here's two studies of "Belle," a wonderful chocolate lab. "Chocolate Lab Study," 8" square. And "Hearty Laughter," 6" x 12".

My client sent a number of nice reference photos, and I couldn't stop at just one painting. Seems like it's been a recurring problem this week, too many good references for each dog!! I haven't heard back, so do not know which she will choose as her own. However, I will start a wait list for anyone interested - inquiries to ksantini@turtledovedesigns.com .

Thank you and congratulations are due to returning client Liz Smith Yeats for her purchase of yesterday's painting of Jackpot, a Paws With a Cause service dog. 20% of the purchase will be donated to PAWS in her name.

Behind the scenes, I'm working on some more vintage Fisher Price dog paintings. I had a client ask about commissioning some piecess from the "Tags, Toys & Treasures" series (http://www.turtledovedesigns.com/dog_tags_toys_treasuress.html) for her nursery. She sent me a box packed with her and her husband's childhood toys. I'm setting different scenes up with the vintage Fisher Price dogs and various other items, and doing some quick painted sketches. I'll post a few next week so that you can see some of the combinations.

You are always free to share these paintings and the Painting a Dog a Day project with your friends and family - thank you for spreading the dog-a-day word!
I wish everyone a wonderful weekend.
See you Monday!
Kim

Kimberly Kelly Santini
http://www.turtledovedesigns.com/
distinctive pet portraits
& 4-legged paintings

http://www.paintingadogaday.com/
come. sit. stay.
enjoy the art.

Founding member of the Canine Art Guild
http://www.canineartguild.com/
the gateway to canine art on the web

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Black Lab Study (Jackpot)


"Black Lab Study (Jackpot)," 6" x 8", Paws With a Cause service dog painting in acrylic on canvasboard, depicting a black labrador retriever, $199 to the first buyer. 20% from the purchase of this painting will be donated to Paws With a Cause (http://www.pawswithacause.org/). Inquiries to ksantini@turtledovedesigns.com .

SOLD.

I have painted Jackpot before - his initial painting is featured on notecards (http://www.turtledovedesigns.com/pet_portrait_notecards.html). At the time I did the first painting, I flagged one of his reference photos to paint at a later date. As you can see, he was - is - far too regal to pass up.

I love painting dark animals because of the way the light plays off their fur. Earlier this week you saw a black/dark gray long haired cat where the light picked out orange and lavendar highlights in the fringes of her body. In Jackpot's instance, the light literally carved his skull out from underneath his skin, bleaching the fur to a pale blue. It was an interesting drawing challenge as well, getting the angle and value ranges correct.

And of course I had to set him against a blue sky, one that matches the blue in the vests that PAWS service dogs wear (well, this blue is a lighter shade of the same color).

Thanks, as always, for looking at these paintings. Of course you may forward them and share with your friends and family.
Back to finishing the remaining Peanut pieces from yesterday!
Kim

Kimberly Kelly Santini
http://www.turtledovedesigns.com/
distinctive pet portraits
& 4-legged paintings

http://www.paintingadogaday.com/
come. sit. stay.
enjoy the art.

Founding member of the Canine Art Guild
http://www.canineartguild.com/
the gateway to canine art on the web

Wednesday, April 16, 2008


"Peanut's in the Couch," 8" x 10", terrier pet portrait in acrylic on canvasboard. Inquiries to ksantini@turtledovedesigns.com .

Today was a Peanut Fest. I worked on 4 different paintings of this little guy, and really thought I'd get them all done, but forgot that I had to clean up before dinner, as I actually have plans tonight. I'll get the rest finished in the coming days.

I love the way Peanut's all curled up into his blanket, cozy and warm. Sort of like the best spot to be on a drizzly and damp day. (Not that today was one of those!) But it's a painting with a little bit of atmosphere to it.

The other three Peanuts are playing outside, perched on the edge of a dock, and sunbathing. They vary in size from 8" x 16" all the way up to 16" x 20". This little dog has a precociousness about him that is precious, and his paintings are sure to draw the viewer in close for a better look.

That's if my client lets me keep any of them! Guess I'll have to paint a Peanut for myself!

Thanks as always for looking, and for sharing these paintings with your friends and family,
Until tomorrow,
Kim

Kimberly Kelly Santini
http://www.turtledovedesigns.com/
distinctive pet portraits
& 4-legged paintings

http://www.paintingadogaday.com/
come. sit. stay.
enjoy the art.

Founding member of the Canine Art Guild
http://www.canineartguild.com/
the gateway to canine art on the web

Tuesday, April 15, 2008


"Black Cat Profile (Winnie)," 4" x 8", black long haired cat portrait in acrylic on canvasboard, $149. Inquiries to ksantini@turtledovedesigns.com .
SOLD.

I have literally been painting all day. Winnie's Mom sent so many great photos of Winnie and Bela, that I could not choose. I did 4 pieces today, two of each kitty, and am waiting to hear which ones she would like, if any (so this one could be sold). I thought I would post my favorite, but when I lined them up, again I couldn't choose. I'm a pro at waffling, I guess.

I do love the sinuous shape of Winnie in this painting. The dashes of color, the highlights in her fur, the casual pose. A taller portrait is a tough one to pull off - I've tried, too, let me tell you! It works this time around, though.

Thanks, as always for looking, and for sharing these paintings with your friends and family.
I'm off to choose from an array of terrier photos for tomorrow's piece. Back to waffling again!
Kim

Kimberly Kelly Santini
http://www.turtledovedesigns.com/
distinctive pet portraits
& 4-legged paintings

http://www.paintingadogaday.com/
come. sit. stay.
enjoy the art.

Founding member of the Canine Art Guild
http://www.canineartguild.com/
the gateway to canine art on the web

Monday, April 14, 2008


At the tail end of June (the 28th and 29th to be exact), I will be a guest at the Shaggy Chic Boutique in Birmingham Michigan. This painting, "Baxter's Tartan Collar," is the first of several pieces being developed specifially for this event.

It seemed to make sense that the announcements and press releases include the store's resident pooches, of which Baxter is only 1/2 (can you imagine, a terrier only being 1/2 of anything?!). I am guessing that Baxter's snazzy collar also came from Shaggy Chic.

I'll be in the store (which is terribly wonderful if you have a soft spot for a furred one) the entire weekend,displaying my original artwork and accepting commissions for new dog-a-day portraits. You are welcome to bring your dog along since - weather permitting - I'll have my camera on hand to shoot reference photos (this will not be a typical portrait photo shoot - I work from candid, non-flash photos, and rely on Mother Nature's helping hand. The pics I shoot that day will be for use in developing future paintings.). I'll accept reservations for dog-a-day paintings, and also have a variety of original artwork and giclees for sale.

10% of my sales along with commissioned booked works that weekend will be donated to the Michigan Animal Rescue League (http://www.michigananimalrescueleague.org/). This is a group I am very excited to work with, and one that the Shaggy Chic Boutique has patnered with in the past.

If you have any questions at all, please give the shop a call - 248-594-5599. They will be happy to provide specific hours, supply directions, answer any product questions (Finnigan recommends thes Mydogtoy items), get you on their mailing list and keep you informed as the date gets closer.

Which reminds me - if you are not on my mailing list (the old-fashioned snail one) now would be a great time to get yourself added! Send me an email (ksantini@turtledovedesigns.com) with the subject line "Mailing list", and I'll get you keyed into the database asap. (If you have purchased in the past, you are already on my list.) I do postcard mailings at least 3 times per year (the last one I sent was a Valentine Boston Terrier), and try to keep everyone informed of events happening within their area.

Also, if you are interested in booking a dog-a-day commission, I suggest you step forward soon. The weekend events and shows where I connect with new clients are starting up in the coming weeks. I anticipate fielding many new inquiries and scheduling portraits during these times. I would love to give preferential treatment to those of you who have been following along all the time, hence this "heads up." FYI I am currently scheduling dog-a-days for the end of April 2009.

I do have a limited number of holiday spots for dog-a-days that are reserved for past clients. If you are considering a dog-a-day as a gift for a family member or friend, please speak up now (ksantini@turtledovedesigns.com) so that I can get your project on my books. I hate having to say "no," but each year those coveted holiday slots get booked earlier and earlier. I hate even more asking you to plan your holiday gift giving when the snow is still fresh in our minds........

Thanks, as always, for looking.
And for sharing these paintings with your friends and family!
See you tomorrow,
Kim


Kimberly Kelly Santini
http://www.turtledovedesigns.com/
distinctive pet portraits
& 4-legged paintings

http://www.paintingadogaday.com/
come. sit. stay.
enjoy the art.

Founding member of the Canine Art Guild
http://www.canineartguild.com/
the gateway to canine art on the web

Wednesday, April 09, 2008



"Contentment", 6" square, acrylic boston terrier portrait on canvasboard; "BT Tongue," 4" x 8", acrylic boston terrier profile painting, $149. Inquiries to ksantini@turtledovedesigns.com .

Since I am now officially a hockey widow (playoffs have started) and had 6 kids (not all my own) plus an extra dog (who behaved better than Finnigan!) for the bulk of the day, I needed some mental health time. After tucking some kids in and shuttling another one to a sleepover, I ducked into the studio with a glass of wine and some m&ms (don't m&ms cure just about everything?), and decided to have a quick go at some reference photos from Midwest Boston Terrier Rescue here in Michigan. They have no idea I was painting for them (surprise!), but they are always terribly appreciative of the funds that the Painting a Dog a Day project is able to raise.

20% of the sales of the above 2 paintings will go to this 501c group, comprised of volunteers who unconditionally love their fostered dogs, nursing souls and bodies, caring for these animals out of their own pockets, eventually finding new forever homes. You can learn more about Midwest Boston Terrier Rescue at http://www.midwestbtrescue.org/ . They are beautiful people to work with.

There are groups like Midwest Boston Terrier Rescue all over the US, groups that partner with local shelters and pull dogs and cats before euthanasia, giving them a third chance to find families. If you are looking to adopt a particular breed, google it's name plus the word "rescue" and see what you come up with (for example, google "cattle dog rescue" if you feel the need to add a neurotic and wonderfully active family member).

If you know of a Michigan based shelter or rescue that might want to partner with the Painting a Dog a Day project and myself, please send me their contact information or ask them to get in touch via ksantini@turtledovedesigns.com .

Thanks, as always, for looking at my paintings.
Talk to you soon!
Kim

Kimberly Kelly Santini
http://www.turtledovedesigns.com/
distinctive pet portraits
& 4-legged paintings

http://www.paintingadogaday.com/
come. sit. stay.
enjoy the art.

Founding member of the Canine Art Guild
http://www.canineartguild.com/
the gateway to canine art on the web

Monday, April 07, 2008


"Honey," 8" x 10", commissioned mixed breed dog portrait, private collection (THANK YOU!).

Don't fear - I am still on vacation. Spent today at the library (pouring over wordless childrens' books - the stories told through pictures/artwork alone), took a long walk with the kids - and dog - discovering signs of spring, did a little putzing in the yard (my daughter discovered with much excitement that the fairies had migrated home for the summer!), briefly met with a client and got the ok to glaze her portrait, and managed to start blocking in a very exciting and very larger than life terrier painting (28" x 20"!).

But this little piece is from a few weeks back, one of those days when I was rather productive, and had already posted 3 paintings. I know Honey's family wanted to see her "officially" on the blog, and she truly deserves it. Look at those eyes, with her dark eyeliner. And that pink, damp nose! And floppy velvety ears that are miles better than The Flying Nun's hat. I loved her serious face and all the nuances of her peachy markings (there is a white muzzle and blaze in there, just peeking through the apricots).

If you are interested in commissioning your own dog-a-day portrait, drop me a line at ksantini@turtledovedesigns.com . I am still on vacation through the remainder of this week, so be patient with regard to response time. I'm re-discovering the joys of a life that isn't tethered to the computer! But I would love to talk to you about your pet, and how we might be able to incorporate him/her into the Painting a Dog a Day project. I'm currently booking for April 2009.

Tomorrow it's the dentist, then off to get the boys new soccer cleats, followed up perhaps with a bike ride (the trail just south of our house will dump us at a Dairy Queen about 5 miles away.....). We shall see what the day brings!

Thanks, as always, for looking.
And for sharing these paintings with your friends and family.
Talk soon!Kim

Kimberly Kelly Santini
http://www.turtledovedesigns.com/
distinctive pet portraits
& 4-legged paintings

http://www.paintingadogaday.com/
come. sit. stay.
enjoy the art.

Founding member of the Canine Art Guild
http://www.canineartguild.com/
the gateway to canine art on the web

Thursday, April 03, 2008


"Catch the Wind (Sage)," 8" x 16", shepherd mix dog portrait, sale pending. Inquiries may come to ksantini@turtledovedesigns.com .

I have a number of photos of Sage, and she's constantly in motion. Legs blurred, tongue slopping every which way, she's a dog of action. I wanted to capture that essence in her painting. Aiming her profile into an imagined wind and painting the background as though it was flowing into her were two tricks I employed. Loose and juicy brushwork compliments the sense of motion.

Today is the last regular dog-a-day painting for a little bit. I've decided to take spring break with my kids this year. We won't be doing anything grander than raking the yard and walking the dog. But they will be delighted that my anthem "you may be off school, but it's still a work day for me" will be unsung in the coming week.

Besides, you know me - I always manage to sneak into the studio and paint, even when I'm not officially supposed to. So don't be surprised if you see a post or two next week. But don't be worried if none come, either. Who knows what we'll do, but it might involve leaving the computer alone for days at a time !!!!

Thanks as always for looking.
And for sharing these paintings with your friends and family,
Talk soon,
Kim

Kimberly Kelly Santini
http://www.turtledovedesigns.com/
distinctive pet portraits
& 4-legged paintings

http://www.paintingadogaday.com/
come. sit. stay.
enjoy the art.

Founding member of the Canine Art Guild
http://www.canineartguild.com/
the gateway to canine art on the web

Wednesday, April 02, 2008


"Lila," 11" x 14", commissioned boxer portrait, acrylic on board, private collection (THANK YOU!).

My client flooded me with all sorts of Lila photos, but there was one that smacked me fairly hard. When that happens, I have a tough time messing up.

Lila's color is simply perfect - that dark mask, the darling snippet and white chest... The orange and green and violet undertones created a solid triad of color that anchors the painting. If you squint down at the piece, it becomes pure abstraction, shapes gently jostling each other. I love it!!

A big thank you and welcome to new dog-a-day collector Jeannette Levene. She found a painting on the Dog a Day webpages, and snapped it up. One of my favorites, too. :) Visit www.paintingadogaday.com for more information.

In today's mail came the notice that my painting "Spot" (http://www.turtledovedesigns.com/animal_art.html, and scroll all the way down to the bottom) won the People's Choice Award at the 2007 Michigan State Fair. Thank you very much to everyone who visited me the day of my demonstration, and especially to those of you who voted for Spot. His new owners will be pleased to hear of this award as well!

Thanks, as always, for looking.
And for sharing these paintings with your friends and family,
See you tomorrow!Kim

Kimberly Kelly Santini
http://www.turtledovedesigns.com/
distinctive pet portraits
& 4-legged paintings

http://www.paintingadogaday.com/
come. sit. stay.
enjoy the art.

Founding member of the Canine Art Guild
http://www.canineartguild.com/
the gateway to canine art on the web

Tuesday, April 01, 2008


"Baroo I (Sadie-Sage)," 6" x 8", commissioned pet portrait depicting a Beag-ador, private collection (or so I think - I haven't heard back from my client yet!). Inquiries on "Baroo I" or any other dog-a-day paintings (including how to get one of your own) may always come to me at ksantini@turtledovedesigns.com .

A Beag-ador !? Yes, that is Sadie-Sage's proud lineage. In this day and age of gourmet doggie-partnering, Sadie-Sage is a blueblooded mutt through and through. It is suspected she is a beagle-lab mix, but it is no secret that she is a doll with the sweetest face ever. Look at those eyes!!

Sadie-Sage's portrait also benefits the Best Friends Animal Sanctuary in Utah. Last summer, BFAS's publication "Best Friends Magazine" did a feature article on the Painting a Dog a Day project, I was touched by the enormity of their readers' response, so much so that I pledged a donation in the purchaser's name for all subsequent booked dog-a-day commissions. Best Friends Animal Sanctuary has garnered over $2000 as a result of that promise, and the donations keep on piling up.

If you book a dog-a-day portrait and say that you found me through Best Friends Magazine, I'll be happy to continue in the tradition of Sadie-Sage's painting. Inquiries may come to ksantini@turtledovedesigns.com .

Thanks, as always, for looking. And for sharing these paintings with your friends and family,
Talk tomorrow,
Kim

Kimberly Kelly Santini
http://www.turtledovedesigns.com/
distinctive pet portraits
& 4-legged paintings

http://www.paintingadogaday.com/
come. sit. stay.
enjoy the art.

Founding member of the Canine Art Guild
http://www.canineartguild.com/
the gateway to canine art on the web


ABOVE, FROM TOP: "Remembering Puddles," 5" x 7", SOLD, and "Yum IV (Puddles)," 4" x 5", $ 114. Both portraits depict a very loved beagle/hound mix. Inquiries may come to ksantini@turtledovedesigns.com .

I had a busy day Monday. Spent the morning in the studio, actively painting and getting substantial work done on a number of pieces.

In the afternoon I taped a segment for a cable show in my area called "Lunch at CJs." I showed a number of recent paintings and talked about the Painting a Dog a Day project - it was a great time! I will share a link to the digital broadcast when the editing has been completed and the show is scheduled to air - stay tuned!

Raced home from that to get dinner going and the kids off to music lessons. My oldest then got shuttled to soccer practice, and the remaining Santini's settled around the kitchen table for the Checkers Championship of the Universe. I was narrowly defeated in the final match by a cunning 7 year old.

About that time some wicked thunderstorms rolled in. I opted to keep the computer powered down, and instead curled up with a good book and a glass of wine. It was a wonderfully quiet and relaxing night, listening to the rain and imagining the snow getting rinsed away (which it has been!!! cartwheels!!).

So my apologies for sharing yesterday's dog, aptly named "Puddles," with you a day later than normal.

Now back to the easel for some more work!!
Thanks, as always, for sharing these paintings with your friends and family!
Kim

Kimberly Kelly Santini
http://www.turtledovedesigns.com/
distinctive pet portraits
& 4-legged paintings

http://www.paintingadogaday.com/
come. sit. stay.
enjoy the art.

Founding member of the Canine Art Guild
http://www.canineartguild.com/
the gateway to canine art on the web
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