I decided to go for simplicity today. I’m embracing the concept of “less is more” and stopping while I am ahead. This little lamb chop is too cute to embellish.
In other news my family has a new pound puppy. We went to the pound and there was a litter of lab mix puppies. My daughter fell in love with one immediately (of course she did) and named her Sunshine. She’s a sweet little dog who already loves to hike and tolerates being a five year old’s baby like a trooper.
Her hobbies include chewing, chewing, and more chewing. She also likes to be carried around like a princess and enjoys sleeping in the crook of any neck. I’m pretty sure she has doubled in size in just one week and she’s been known to wear necklaces and the rare baby bonnet.
Her special talents include eating her weight in food, chasing a ball, and looking so adorable she gets spoiled rotten. She can go up the stairs, but not down and she can pick up another dogs leash and take him for a walk (whether he wants to go or not). Her biggest talent of all is stealing the hearts of everyone that meets her.
I hope you are having a nice Labor Day filled with painting or puppies or food and family!
Ever have a moment where you just know you could have been a British comedy star if only you had been born in the right country? Well, I am pretty sure I could be the next “Mr. Bean” if given the chance. I can do slapstick and goofy faces like nobody’s business. Especially on the days I let my chickens roam the yard like the winged free spirits they are!
We keep our chickens in a big fenced in area with plants and rocks and trees. They live the good life, protected from coyotes and dangers in the wild. Their food just magically appears and water is aplenty. Even though they are totally spoiled, with daily fresh fruits and vegetables and bugs galore, I still feel sorry for them because I know they want to run around the forbidden part of my yard chasing the dogs and nibbling on my flowers, so once in a while I let them out and they do go a little crazy.
It’s all fun and games until they get too close to my tomato plants and I have to put them back into their fenced-in luxury mansion with extensive grounds and property. That’s when all the trouble begins. The worst part? They actually want to go in, but just can’t figure how to do it.
My chickens are not the smartest. They are known mostly for their beauty and superior egg laying abilities. No chicken of mine is ever going to be caught on camera playing tick-tack-toe. Nope, my chickens will run back and forth in front of an open door for ten minutes before it occurs to them they can walk right through the giant whole in the fence and be home at last. That is their little chicken super power. So when I have to put them back where they belong there is a lot of running in circles and flapping of wings. I spend a lot of time tossing brightly colored food scraps to herd them in the general direction they need to go in while begging, pleading, and muttering the occasional swear word under my breath.
I guess one might say that I am not the smartest either, because, I too, am running back and forth in front of an open door flapping my arms and looking a lot like a circus clown with no idea on how to get my flock to actually enter said door. It’s like I am starring in my own British comedy, except the humor is not so dry and not so subtle and there are way more chickens involved than ever really should be.
The only saving grace to this chicken induced madness is the likely pounds I am shedding during my “exercise” routine. Before long I’ll be a svelte 40 something (Have I mentioned I’m turning 40 soon? Gasp!) mom with the thighs of an Olympic soccer player. Maybe I better not get too carried away, at the very least, I’ll probably have the thighs of a soccer mom whose gas pedal foot really gets a work-out driving the kids back and forth to practice!
In the meantime, during one of these chicken chasing events, I’ll have to set up the camera and get it all on film. I may not get a chance to be the next Mr. Bean, but maybe I’ll get to be the American chicken-chasing star of YouTube. Who knows? I could end up with my own chicken inspired product line. “Birds of a feather look ridiculous together” could be my text tagline.
Our friends dog, Samantha, passed away recently. I am working on painting a portrait of Samantha as a gift. Samantha was an amazing dog. She visited a local nursing home weekly to cheer up the residents. She was a natural-born healer and touched the lives of everyone she came in contact with. She was really special and will be missed by many. I plan to write more about her later.
I wasn’t planning on painting her today. I have a few reference photos given to me by her owner. I happened to be looking at them today so I could start planning a 16×20 acrylic collage painting. I started sketching Samantha out today when one of the reference photos caught my eye and I just had to paint it with alcohol inks. I’m pretty excited to be able to give our friend two paintings of her beloved dog. I figure some dogs are just to important to have only one portrait painted!
I haven’t painted a dog in a long time so it felt really good to be making marks for fur and putting that gleam in the eye. I really should paint more animals. I am always happy when I finish a dog or cat painting. In the photo I used as a reference it looks like Samantha was peeking out from under the bed. I had fun recreating that moment in ink!
If you’d like your dog painted, I do take commissions. Just email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and we can discuss the details!
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