Piecemeal Portrait of a Dog

May 24, 2019
23 x 21 inch piecemeal portrait of a dog. Brush pen, watercolor and collage. It is too large to scan easily so I have photographed it sitting on my butcher block surface.

If you’ve been reading the blog for even a short while you’ll know that I enjoy making what I call “piecemeal style.”

Please use the category list or the blog’s search engine to find many more examples of this. 

Here’s one post to get you started.

If you’ve been an online student of mine in the past 8 months or so you’ve seen today’s image on the door behind me during live webinars. (“Eighteenth Century Man: the Meaning of Romance as Expressed in the Well Tailored Shoulder” [title short version] has been moved over to the other side of the studio!)

Like all my piecemeal pieces I began with a sketch on a single 9 x 12 inch piece of paper. You can see the vertical washi tape at the right of the dog’s head, and running through its legs, where I then expanded bit by bit. Because most of the papers added for this sketch were not great for wet media I keep the use of wet media to the dog, and used collage to stand in for the cushions of the sofa.

The sketch was a quick warm up sketch I made while working from a muse image on Sktchy. But since I started my scale so large I didn’t get the rear leg and belly, on my first sheet of paper. That’s when my mind shifted to do the quick sketch as something much larger and piecemeal. But then I decided the paper wasn’t suitable for some of the media I wanted to work on—I just kept changing my approach as I moved along. I find this a ton of fun.

I also happen to like the way these types of portraits look. But judging from my friends’ reaction to them they are either an acquired taste or the joy I had doing them is what’s influencing my love of them. No matter. I can’t imagine not doing them.

When sketching follow the fun and joy.  That’s the way to ensure you have a durable sketching habit. 

Note: The stenciled piece of paper included in today’s image was in my scrap file. It’s a piece of inexpensive drawing paper that was used on another project as a waste sheet. I saved it to draw on later. 

(It was actually used when I stenciled on the page spread shown in this image. That means it sat in the scrap pile for a year and a half. If you go to this link please note it is pre-2017 and the image will not enlarge when you click on it.)

    • Marna
    • August 6, 2019

    Hi Roz, I have never commented but I love your work and have followed your blog for a few years now. These types of portraits always draw my eye – so visually interesting and they always look like it was a lot of fun to do. Your use of colour is impeccable as always!

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