Wednesday, 21 January 2015

Boris, a pet portrait, snow and other stuff...

chocolate labrador+dog+pet
'Boris' - acrylic on box canvas 5 x 5 inches

This gorgeously serious looking chap is another of the pet portraits I was commissioned to do as a surprise Christmas present. The feedback I got was that the recipient was delighted with it and will be purchasing a small easel so he can take pride of place in the hallway of her home so everyone visiting can see him!

chocolate labrador+pet portrait+Nic's eARTh
The original photograph and Boris' portrait. 

In other art news, I am working on several different paintings at the same time which is my absolute favourite thing - I get to switch around between landscapes and animals and between large canvasses measuring 70cm x 50cm and tiny ones measuring 7.5cm x 7.5cm! I've just finished my entry to this year's Wildlife Artist of the Year competition and am working on some large landscapes for an exhibition in March that's been organised for the committee members of the Society of Caithness Artists (I'm the current secretary on the committee). I think this is the first time this sort of exhibition has been organised as it's usually just the annual exhibition in the summer that all the members of the Society take part in so hopefully, if it goes well, this one just for committee members might also become an annual event. 

This is a very close up sneaky peek of one
of my work in progress paintings -
any idea what it might be?

In non-art news, the snow we had last week disappeared after a couple of days but not before we went to Melvich Beach which is at the bottom of a short, but sloped, dirt track and then spent an hour trying to get the car back up it again as it turned out it was frozen solid under the snow - let's just say nerves were frayed as was the car mat that S had to put under the front tyre to get a bit of grip, over and over and over until we finally made it to the top of the hill!

Melvich Beach in the snow before 'frozen track-gate'

The snow did then reappear on Saturday which just happened to be the 2nd anniversary of our move to the far north of Scotland. We had the most magical, snowy walk around Baillie Wind Farm with deep snow underfoot and big soft flakes falling gently all around us. It was perfect. Of course, later that same day the snow turned to sleet and normal rainy service has since resumed!

Baillie Wind Farm

Baillie Wind
Baillie Wind Farm 

Brodie wearing her red coat so she doesn't disappear in the snow!

Wrapped up for the elements at Baillie Wind Farm 

That's all from the far north for this week. I'll be popping over to Paint Party Friday to see what adventures (artistic and otherwise) other folk have been having this week.  


  1. Sigh. I love Boris and his sad looking eyes. What a sweetie. I also love seeing pictures of your area. So different than mine. It is so beautiful up there. I can send you a picture of the view from my office window. Just buildings. And traffic. And horns honking. And Construction. Right now, I'd rather be where you are.

  2. Those photos of your walk and beach are amazing and I love the touch of red on Brodie with all that white snow around him! So beautiful but what a scare with the car getting stuck in the snow. Your pet portraits are so expressive and unique. Best of luck to you on the competition!

  3. Snow on a beach that is so different, to me anyway.

  4. Oooh, I love everything about this! First of all, HOW cute is Brodie?! I love her little red coat! And your commissioned pet portrait is absolutely amazing - I would have proudly displayed it too :)
    Thank you for your thoughts about the daily creativity - I agree, I did 29 faces and thought I could never do it again - although I did have a body of work at the end of the month that I would not have otherwise. I'm hoping this will continue to be light and fun ;) xo

  5. Beautiful, beautiful dog and portrait!!!

  6. Boris looks like such a sweetie-and again, you've painted a beautiful portrait. You've got lots of exciting artsy things happening and that must make you very happy. Fascinating detail-looking like a meadow of flowers to me. Although your photos do evoke the remoteness of your area it is also so lovely and peaceful looking-especially at the beach. Glad you were able to get home safely to warm up.

  7. Wonderful pet portrait! Stay warm, Valerie

  8. Fabulous pet portrait his eyes are fabulous!! Wow so impressive...great snow Brodie in his awesome sweater and the one of you!! I clicked to enlarge them and I felt like I was there!! All the best on all the excitement occurring in your life!!

    Hugs Giggles

  9. Brrrrr, looks cold but beautiful!!! Love your Boris portrait!

  10. Gorgeous work on the pet portrait! Those eyes! *sigh* And your photography is beautiful! Nicola, I didn't realize you were the same Nicola whose photo (from PaintMyPhoto) I used in my painting of the cow this week until Eva pointed it out! Such a small world. ;)

  11. Just wonderful art! Oh much snow!
    I wished I could paint my dogs like you paint dogs!

  12. Wow, that's a lot of snow. You and Brodie look great. Love the portrait of Boris. So true to life. Your love of these beautiful creatures really comes through in your work and how you speak of them. Congrats. on your commissions. You seem to be really enjoying where you are living now and your happiness fills the post. Have a wonderful day.

  13. Boris - fantastic portrait!! So Love his eyes - amazingly haunting and soulful those eyes.

    Looking forward to seeing the other works in progress and what your Brave, Bold and Daring year brings ! Great to see you are out and about even in challenging weather. (I am hibernating...)

  14. Wonderful dog portrait - especially the expressive eyes :)

  15. Beautiful blog and websites.I really enjoyed reading your post and seeing your art.The detail painting looks a lot like your landscape pieces so I'm guessing it's a new landscape painting. Thanks for visiting my blog and leaving an encouraging note. I hope you stop by again.;)
    ~ karen

  16. Oh, another supercute dog! And you made a great portrait of him too! Looks like you had lots of snow. This morning we woke up to a white world as well. Must admit I really don't like the snow ....

  17. Wow, totally gorgeous dog! The fur is outstanding, and he's just too cute. Good luck with the exhibition!

  18. Love your doggy portrait. Also love seeing Brodie looking like little red riding hood. So cute. Happy PPF

  19. I can see why Boris' human was so thrilled with his portrait, it's fantastic!
    I'm loving seeing all that snow - everyone in the northern hemisphere seems to be ankle deep at the moment :)


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