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.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Open Road

"Open Road," the newest painting in the Sunday Driver series, 8" square, mixed breed dog portrait in acrylic on canvasboard, $349 to the first taker. Inquiries may come to me.
I head out tomorrow for a long weekend with two girlfriends, fellow artists. We are going to Saratoga Race Track to ring in the fall Thoroughbred racing season in style. Well, as long as the style includes rain gear - looks like it'll be wet. But the excellent company will far outweigh anything Mother Nature throws at us.
I'm not certain what my internet connectivity will be while I am out of town, so you might not hear anything (including email responses to any inquiries) until after my return. I appreciate your patience and promise to get back to you as soon as I can.
And I've got another new series of paintings under my hat. I'll do my research while in NY, and hope to share some fresh ideas with you in the coming weeks.
Thanks, as always, for sharing my artwork.
Talk to you soon,
Kim

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Thank You!!

"Theresa's Rainbow," limited edition giclee on artist's paper, signed in margins, available in two sizes. Small giclee, image size approximately 12" x 6", $49 plus $15 s&h. Large giclee, image size approximately 24" x 12", $99 plus $15 s&h.
Also still available are 4 of the original paintings that built this giclee: (identified by ball color) "Orange" (third from right, top hand row), "Yellow," "Green," and "Violet," each $299 plus s&h. Orders & inquiries may come to me.
Yesterday I got the nicest letter from Best Friends Animal Sanctuary (BFAS), and because Painting a Dog a Day sales have raised thousands of dollars in donations to BFAS during the past 3 years, I thought I'd share it with you.
"Hello Best Friends Members,
"It's been crazy at Dogtown... but a good crazy. And we just want to thank you for all your help.
"When the "Vicktory" dogs arrived from the property of former NFL quarterback Michael Vick, all of us caregivers and trainers had to learn even more ways to approach, handle and relate to dogs who'd lived through unthinkable trauma. And we had to put together a full lifetime plan that met the unique needs of each of those dogs as individuals.
"If you've been watching the National Geographic series, "Dog Town" or have been following the dogs on the Best Friends website, then you know the results have been more amazing than anyone ever expected. Every dog in Dogtown is blossoming just that little bit more from all we learned while helping the Vicktory dogs.
"These dogs have been a huge project, but your letters, comments on the website, and generous support always motivated us. You deserve all the credit for the Victory dogs' healing, and for giving us this chance to hone our skills for helping all the dogs in our care. From all the animals and people here, thank you so much for all that you've done, and for being a member of Best Friends.
"Best wishes, Michelle Besmehn & John Garcia
"Co-managers, Dogtown"
I know too many Dog-a-Day readers too well to think that their (your!) support ends with just the purchase of one of my paintings. As a community you are responsible for making positive change in the lives around you through volunteering, fostering, adopting, teaching, sharing, donating and living an example. Thank you so much for making a difference in your corner of the world. You make me proud!!
Kim
PS If you want to support BFAS through Painting a Dog a Day, mention this at the time you book your portrait. Proceeds from the sale of your painting will be earmarked to go to them.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Lookin' for Eoin

"Lookin' for Eoin (Buddy as a Pup)," 6" x 12", acrylic mixed breed puppy portrait, not available for purchase.
I'm working on paintings that are gifts and therefore cannot be shared for fear of ruining the surprise. Well, Buddy is one of them, but I'm fairly certain the recipient, my 5 year old nephew, doesn't follow my blog, so I'm safe. Unless another Kelly ruins the surprise, which would mean no more beers at my house, so I'm confidant the secret's safe for a little longer.....
This is Buddy, a newly rescued Border Collie mix. He is a sweet puppy, already very attached to his boys, Eoin, Connor and Gavin. What great times these 4 will have growing up together! Poor Sarah (my sister-in-law) - does she really know what's in store?
Just a reminder - holiday commissions are almost entirely booked. Please let me know if you are considering commissioning a pet portrait as a gift so that I can get you on the calendar before it is too late!
Next week will bring the newest painting in the canines & cars series, a grouping I've named "Sunday Drivers." I'm always looking for inspirations and stories - you may send your materials to me. I'll acknowledge receipt of everything. And thanks in advance for sharing!!
And thanks, too, for sharing my artwork.
Have a great weekend, Kim
PS Thank you to everyone for my birthday wishes and your donations to A Place to Bark. I was overwhelmed with your response and am completely convinced that the Painting a Dog a Day community is the best!

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Share the Joy

Today is my birthday. While I won't share how old I am (a woman has to have some mystique, right?!), suffice it to say that I'm a little wiser, at the very least wise enough to know how much I have yet to learn, but wise enough to enjoy the smarts I've garnered honestly.
I'm sharing this because my wish is that you to do something for yourself on my birthday. The favor I'm asking is for you to consider, if possible, making a donation to one of my favorite shelters, A Place to Bark. You can support their efforts through the purchase of the 'zine publication Party Animals or you can choose to make a direct donation using the link on their site. (While you visit, be sure to sign up for their newsletter, too.)
A Place to Bark is a private no-kill shelter (with 501c status) in Tennessee run by animal advocate and artis Bernie Berlin. It is amazing what Bernie is able to do - I invite you to visit the shelter's link and read more about her mission and the hundreds of animals she's saved. She is a powerhouse, and the sort of selfless person I want to be when I grow up.
She also has inspired countless other individuals to dedicate their talents to supporting animal rescue, most noteably the team of artists (fearlessly led by Jill Beninato) who created the latest A Place to Bark fundraiser, the Party Animals book (pictured above, copyright Jill Beninato, and viewable in it's entirety on A Place to Bark's blog). 21 artists created works for this project. Party Animal book sales support the shelter, with the original artworks being auctioned on ebay in October, also to benefit the shelter. It's a great project, a true labor of love, and one that is bound to bring many smiles along with it.
I've ordered my copy of Party Animals, and will also slate several upcoming paintings as benefits for A Place to Bark. I've also asked to be a participant in the next A Place to Bark fundraiser.
And tonite as I drift to sleep, instead of counting sheep, I will count up the animals who's lives will be changed for the better because of your generous gift.
Happy Birthday to You!
Kim

Monday, July 20, 2009

Caboose


"Caboose," inspired by Doc, 6" square, acrylic equine portrait on canvasboard, not for sale. Inquiries may come to me.

Today a friend bid goodbye to her horse, a sweet tempered buckskin who danced his way into more studios than I can count. Doc is mourned by those who loved him, those who created art inspired by him, and those who didn't know him but do know Juliet.

Doc came to Juliet from a series of neglectful owners, and her gentle care restored his health, giving him the best years of his life. You could see the joy in his movement, a love of his newfound role as cherished companion and muse, and his ceaseless delight in the simpler things (like treats from the whinny-ing cookie jar).

And why, you ask, am I painting a portrait of his butt? Well, there's a secret society of artists, my friend and myself included, who find great inspiration (both real and tongue in cheek) from this end of the horse. Besides, she's already got a jillion and one traditional studies of him.

Doc will always be a few strides away from the tip of my paintbrush, Juliet. I'll have this piece ready to hand over when we meet up in Saratoga next week, and we can shed tears properly over a pint or two of Ben & Jerry's.

Hugs go out to everyone who knows this type of loss.
Thanks for following along with my artwork,
Kim

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Marmalade


"Marmalade," 8" square, cat portrait in acrylic on canvasboard, $349. Inquiries may come to me.

A few weeks back I asked for photos of light or white colored animals, as I was experimenting and practicing with subtler value changes and color temperature shifts. This kitty came from a new friend on Twitter - she sent me a host of wonderful photos to paint from. And I'm having a darned good time continuing my self-imposed lesson.

The next couple paintings on my easel are commissioned gifts, and I won't be sharing them until after the actual gift giving, so as to not ruin the surprise element. It'll be quiet on the Dog-a-Day blogt, but the paint will be flying here in the studio.

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

Monday, July 13, 2009

Squint

"Squint," 4" x 5", black cat painting, acrylic on canvasboard, $184. Proceeds from the sale of this painting will go to my local shelter, the Oakland Pet Adoption Center, who has met their goal of being a no-kill and no-more-homeless-pets shelter far in advance of 2010! Inquiries may come to me.

SOLD

Had to paint a black cat today. A client sent me references that were so reminescent of Miah, my kitty angel, that I had to wallow in it a little bit. This little one isn't Miah, but I did pull on my memory of the way her fur pinked out in the sunshine and glints of blue peeked from her yellow eyes when the light was strong.

I spent most of today doing the unthinkable (at least to me) - I scrubbed the studio, floor to ceiling. Being one who shuns housework whenever possible, this was a monumental undertaking. (Wish you could have seen my husband's face when he came home....) But it was necessary - I ordered new furniture/cabinetry and needed to set the stage for it's arrival later this week. The next phase of the studio remodel involves Anaglypta wallpaper (gorgeous stuff!) over these old horsehair plaster walls. Then some carpentry around existing bookcases and fresh paint all around. After working out of a space that has been a dumping ground for furniture and household items that don't work anywhere else in the house, I'm pumped to have a room that is both functional and pretty (I am a visual person, after all).

Thanks for sharing my paintings!
Kim

Friday, July 10, 2009

Mongo

"Mongo," 6" x 8", commissioned pet portrait of a mixed breed dog, acrylic on canvasboard, private collection (or so I think - I'm still waiting to hear back from my client). Inquiries may come to me.
 
While I love all dogs, mixed breeds are especially fun to paint. Each has an endearing look, all the more special because they are one of a kind. So for these guys the painting process is serendipitous - I'll never do another similar piece (unless I paint the same dog again).
 
Guess it's also part of the whole "keeping it fresh" bit. Mongo is daily painting #718. If they were all of, say, Golden Retrievers, things would get a little dull in the studio. Not that I don't love those floppy, happy retriever smiles, but 718 of them would start to look all the same.
 
The mixed breeds bring variety, delight, and uniqueness to my easel. I hope they bring the same to your eyes.
 
Wishing you all a great weekend full of swishing tails and panting faces,
Kim

Thursday, July 09, 2009

Lexus

"Lexus," 4" x 8", Weimereiner portrait in acrylic on canvasboard, $249. Inquiries may come to me.
 
Lexus is the latest addition to my Canines & Cars series of paintings. This particular theme has been well received and the paintings I share always generate a great story or two, excellent reminesces of road trips, errand running, and good times. (PS I'm open to reviewing any photos you would like to send for consideration of inclusion in this series of paintings! Send them toksantini@turtledovedesigns.com )
 
Tomorrow evening is the opening of the Art & Automobiles exhibition at Starkweather Gallery in Romeo, Michigan. On Saturday, Starkweather is continuing the celebration with a block party, accenting the artwork with a classic cars show, some excellent tunes and good grub.
 
I'll be there both days, just hanging and sipping wine tomorrow night, and doing a book signing on Saturday in the Carriage House behind the gallery. On Saturday I'll also bring along some Dog-a-Day paintings and my camera, so if you care to road trip it with your four legged friend, we can try to shoot some reference photos and discuss a concept for your own special painting, with or without a vehicle.
 
If you are unable to attend either event, don't despair - you are always welcome to share your thoughts and photos with me via email.
 
Thanks as always for sharing my artwork.
Kim

Wednesday, July 08, 2009

Pei Play


"Pei Play," 10" x 20", portrait of two Shar-peis, acrylic on canvasboard, complete with custom framing, $729. (In the interest of full disclosure, this painting actually took me 2 days to complete, not the requisite Painting a Dog a Day's one day.) Inquiries may come to me.

The above painting is Jay with his sister Raisin. They didn't start life out together. Raisin, being the oldest & wisest, sagely allowed Jay to join the family. Jay was "discovered" (err, rescued) off Craig's list.
I've painted their portraits previously and separately (Raisin was one of the first Dog a Days, and Jay, or "Chocolate Pei," 8" square, pictured below, was done just a few weeks back but I hadn't had a chance to share him yet), but couldn't resist painting this piece of them together.

"Pei Play" epitomizes sheer joy, resilience and vitality. The perfect combination for this October's 2nd annual "Helping Paws" exhibition hosted by the Canine Art Guild. Helping Paws is a unique art show where the participating artists choose a rescue or shelter to partner with, and the sale of their artwork supports that particular group. There also will be People's Choice awards in the form of cash donations made to the partner animal rescue/shelter. "Pei Play" will be one of my entries for this particular show.
Now I'm off to spend a little time on myself. Can't decide if I should curl up with a good read or make progress on my latest knitting project, a laptop sleeve for my new powerbook. Either way, I'll also have a glass of wine and a warm gooey brownie.
Thanks as always for looking at and sharing my artwork.
Kim

Monday, July 06, 2009

Whadda Mug!

"Whadda Mug! (Rocky)," 4" x 5", Cairn Terrier pet portrait, acrylic on canvasboard, $184 to the first taker. Proceeds from the sale of Rocky's painting will be donated to Col. Potter's Cairn Terrier Rescue, a group I love working with. Their volunteers are just as lively and generous as the dogs they work with - it's a great combination! Inquiries may come to me.
 
SOLD

Long day today - worked till 2am then got up at 6:30 to take oldest to soccer practice, and the nap I had planned for this afternoon never materialized. I'm ready to totter off to bed right now, or else I'll fall asleep at my desk.
 
Thanks as always for looking at and sharing my paintings!
Kim

Friday, July 03, 2009

A Full Belly

"A Full Belly (Marni in Foal)," a Dog a Day painting from the July Virtual pARTy, 8" x 10", equine painting, acrylic on canvasboard, $449. Inquiries may come to me.
 
This is Marni, who I met several years ago as part of a lovely spring photo shoot. She was days away from dropping her first foal, but nevertheless delighted to soak up even more attention (something she definately wasn't starved for!). I have a mess of photos from that evening, and chose one of them as the inspiration for the July Virtual pARTy hosted by equine artist Linda Shantz and myself.
 
What's a Virtual pARTy? It's when a group of artists collectively works from the same reference. In this case, participants have 24 hours to make art with a 4 day window of time to complete those 24 hours. All the pARTy entries will be shared on the pARTy blog later next week. But meanwhile, there's a number of us who are working away in our studios, painting the lovely Marni.
 
I'll have to hook Marni's family up with the Virtual pARTy site. I know they will get a kick of of viewing all the art their little lady inspired.
 
(Hey, if you are interested in participating yourself, there is still time - work is due by midnight on July 4th - sign up here)
 
Wishing everyone a safe and sparkley weekend. Happy 4th of July!!
Kim

Ready to Hunt


IN PROCESS:  "Ready to Hunt," 8" x 16", pointer dog portraits, acrylic on board, inquiries may come to me.
 
SOLD.

The dog and car paintings are officially a hit. All of them sold, and I was left with no Dog a Day paintings for the Art & Automobiles exhibition. I delivered the larger than lifesize Vizsla portrait** this morning, and she'll have to represent the entire spectrum of my work on her own.
 
Meanwhile I came home and decided to start another similarly themed painting. This one still needs some tweaking, but I just adore the energy and color in it so far. 
 
Tomorrow is another Virtual pARTy, and this is another one that's an open invitation. Take a peek at the reference photo and see if you are interested in joining us. It promises to be a good time.
 
Thanks as always for looking at my artwork and sharing it with your friends and family.
Kim
 
**I have a few limited edition giclees remaining of the Vizsla painting "Chauffeur." They are approximately 11" x 14" and are $69 each. Let me know if you would like one.
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