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I'm a professional award winning Portrait artist from NSW Australia.

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Tuesday, December 30, 2014

The creation of Tiki the Shar Pei's portrait

David had me create a portrait of Tiki as a secret Christmas gift for his wife Jacqui.
The original photos weren't sharp enough so  I had David take some more photos using my photo taking tips.

 This photo was one of his original ones and would have made a lovely portrait but was too blurry for me to use.

This was the one we decided on . 

The chosen photo was a bit dark and distorted ( her head is larger than it should be) but I fixed this in photoshop.
 It's easy to get 'big head' distortion if you get too close taking photos ( it's especially bad in horse photos! ).
 I recommend you get at your pets height and about 6-8' back and zoom in to avoid it.
 Here is is after I have  'fixed' it. The distortion doesn't show much in this example but it was obvious! In the one below she sits more upright. She seems to be front heavy in the one above.

Here is the acrylic underpainting done and I am starting to repaint her in Oil colour starting with the darks in her face and her eye.
Her eye was just a dark spot in the photo so I gave her more expression and life in the portrait.

Starting with Oil on her front leg. I chose my colours so she would be more 3D in the portrait than in the painting. Her face and front leg /shoulder are closer to you and stand out more while the rest of her body recedes.

I quite liked this stage but I wanted the background colour to make her really stand out and be the star. Although the portrait looked great from a distance at this stage it looked a bit unfinished and not 3D closeup so needed more work. Larger portraits take a long time to get to a good finish.

Starting on the background. I wanted her to have a simple background but sit convincingly in space. She is a very hard portrait to get a decent photo of. The camera kept washing out the photos ( too light and wishy washy). Even with editing I couldn't really get a photo that does her portrait justice in the flesh.

Here the background and overall concept is finished so I just have to fine tune her ( which takes the longest time.)
Her face isn't finished here but you can see their is more expression visible in a closeup photo. I forgot to take any when she was finished and you can't see it in the overall photos.
After this photo was taken  I just worked on making her face more 3D and real and the wrinkle folds convincing.

Here she is framed. As you can see the detail in her face doesn't show in the overall photo but you can see it in the original portrait.

 40 x 50cms image size
 Custom framed Oil
'It looks great!! Very happy with her, Jacqui is very impressed.'

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