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“Untitled Kitten,” 6” square, seal point kitten portrait in casein on hardboard.

I often talk about the things that I am studying – the human form, landscape, color temperature, you name it. Well today I decided to show you one of my “lessons.”

This is a little 6” square painting done in casein on hardboard. Casein is a milk derivative paint with some unique qualities. For one, it’s opaque, so there is no transparency to the layers of color. This is a big challenge to someone who is used to building on what’s already been laid down.
Casein also dries practically 2 seconds after it hits the surface. So there is no pushing or pulling the paint around – once it’s down, it’s down. Again, another challenge to someone who likes to let loose brushwork steer the direction of her paintings.

However, casein lends itself to a quiet and thoughtful painting session, almost like meditation. And I can use a small watercolor palette to mix colors. Once they dry on the palette, they can be revived with a wet brush. And the colors are saturated and vibrant. It’s more difficult to get muddy color when they dry so quickly and opaquely. This is a direction I will continue to try on for size.

This painting is headed for an exhibition, so will not be available for sale until I learn whether it has been accepted (I should know by July 1st, 2007). If you are interested in purchasing this kitten, please let me know. This way we can stay in touch, and I’ll keep you updated as to whether she will be available through the event organizers or directly through me.

But regardless, she will need a title. I was thinking something like “Dust Mite,” but I’m not certain that has the positive connotation I’m looking for. Suggestions can come to .

Thanks, as always, for looking.
And for sharing these paintings with friends and family.

Kimberly Kelly Santini
distinctive pet portraits
& 4-legged paintings
come. sit. stay.
enjoy the art.

Founding member of the Canine Art Guild
the gateway to canine art on the web


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