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Black on Black, White on White

Recently, I completed two works that challenged my skills in working with extremely subtle shading. One involved my friend’s dog, Binx, who is a very black coated pug. The other, the snowy owl, which is a very white bird.

Both of these pieces required me to lay down a base layer with pretty much no details to go by, so I had to draw in features AFTER the initial layer was complete. It was an interesting and sometimes frustrating way of working! In both cases, my source imagery was very low contrast, so I had to really punch it up in Photoshop to draw out details so I could capture them in the paintings.

The first piece here is a custom pet portrait, done for my friend as a belated housewarming/yuletide gift. The second is a sign in my Animal Guides Hex sign series.

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