I have raised a variety of critters most of my life. As a child we had dogs, birds, fish & turtles, as an adult cats, dogs, birds, fish, tortoises and even hermit crabs have been companion critters. I've always felt it was important for children to raise a pet of some sort, to teach them a healthy respect for, and understanding of, other animal life. If you haven't raised a critter or two you probably did not know they also have an emotional life.
At one point we raised a family of Shiba Inus. A father, mother, daughter, & son, this is a mother/daughter piece I painted the year they both passed being the last surviving members of that pack. Sunny nearly 17(on right) and Snowy 15 1/2(on left) had a tamaltuous and sometimes competitive relationship, most of their lives. In their final years, while always protective, they became very nurturing, tender and loving of each other. There were a great many moments caught on camera & film and this one in paint of one of thoose fleeting moments of endearment.
Me, not generally being of a realistic or literal visual interpretive nature, but more of an emotive one, went to work painting them. I tend to like a more alla prima, direct, & intuitive approach, to capture and transmit my emotional visual energies to canvas, in an attempt to avoid a contrived, overthought or static relief. With a combination of oil paint, brush, and palette knife, I intended to carve a matter-of-fact rendition of the two that captures both their likeness's, as well as the emotions of this tender moment shared by them, mother and daughter and was most happy with the results.
As always feel free to coment.
'Still Moments' 20"x16" oil on canvas (2012, NFS)