Monday, 31 December 2018

Goodbye 2018 (and good riddance)!

 I wish everybody a Happy and Healthy (and Productive) New Year

As some of my friends will know, the last half of 2018 has been pretty dreadful for us.

We lost my Sister-in-Law to pancreatic cancer (aged 56), my step-daughter's long term partner to Heart failure (totally unexpected - he was just 42 and leaves a 3 year old and 7 year old) - my best friend is battling HER2 breast cancer (nasty one) and now my brother in law is diagnosed with prostate cancer (having just recovered from a bleed on the brain earlier this year).

So I am very happy to say goodbye to 2018.

I've done no artwork for several months but am looking forward to picking up the pencils again in 2019.

.... we are flying to our home in the Canaries tomorrow to start the New Year with some much needed sunshine and happy times.   I'm looking forward to getting back to the drawing board and to Blogging again next year although David (hubby) has itchy feet and has booked us on lots of trips for the first half of 2019 ...

We'll be going to Malaysia/Singapore and to Kenya (another safari) and to and from Fuerteventura in between times.

The last post I made here was of the little dog which I'd been asked to do as a memorial for a client whose horse I'd portrayed before.     I should have completed this in October but it didn't happen.

Yesterday I thought I'd finish it but I realised that if I continued it as a 'portrait orientation' I'd either have to truncate it at the neck or draw in the front legs - the ref shows the dog in a strange position as its body is twisted.

An artist whose opinion I respect once contacted me to say he liked my animal portraits but WHY did I follow the trend of cutting the animal off at the neck and that I should work on bringing the body down to the bottom or the side of the paper.    I've tried to stick to that rule ever since.    With this one it doesn't work - or at least it doesn't work if I want to make it a standard size to fit an 'off the shelf mount/frame'.

So, I wondered about making it landscape orientation - that does fit a standard mount/frame ... but I'm not sure.

Anyway, my plan is to send it as a freebie to the client (who has probably long given up on me ever doing the drawing) as an apology (or a thank you for getting me started back on portraiture).

If its going to be portrait orientation its like this:

I'd need to work something out re. the legs.

If I chop it off to make it landscape orientation (a smaller picture) it'll look like this:  less work but I'm not convinced!


  1. First of all Sue..... I am SO sorry to hear about what’s happening in your family. My thoughts and prayers are going your way.... I will be praying for a better 2019.
    Be happy that your hubby has itchy feet .... maybe you both need to be away for awhile..
    your dog portrait is absolutely beautiful and honestly I like the first ..... I have always liked the cropped version of cutting off at the neck...
    It’s more of a portrait not adding the rest of the body.
    Enjoy your time away Sue... Happy and HEALTHY New Year to you and your family...

  2. So glad to see you painting again, Sue! Know this has been a rough year as far as illness and loss of loved ones goes but surely next year will be better. Don't blame you at all for being relieved to say goodby to 2018!

    As far as the little dog goes, can you just fade out around his neck/chest area?

    Or, maybe use an oval mat to do the cropping of the picture for you?

    The landscape orientation doesn't look that bad either - again, a mat would stop the eye and the viewer could just imagine that the chest was behind it.

    Have fun in Fuerte and on all your planned trips in 2019!

    And most of all - HAPPY NEW YEAR!

  3. Hi Sue, I am so sorry you have had such a crappy year, life deals out some lousy cards sometimes. I hope 2019 will be a great year to make amends. I did wonder where you had gotten too, I missed seeing your drawings and seeing your comments on fb pencil pages.
    I don't like the landscape version, just doesn't work for me. Like your friend, I also don't like chopped off heads and I always take the neck/shoulders to the bottom and edge of the paper, except for once and have regretted it as it is so often commented on!! I think the first one will work if you can softly blend the bottom of his neck so it is not a hard line, take the blending down a fair way, you can just suggest the top of the legs if you need to but so vague that it would be barely noticeable. Maybe that will work. He is a lovely chap and you have done a great job with him. Have lovely time out and enjoy your trips away....lucky you!!!


Thanks for visiting my Blog. Let me know what you think :-)

I have disabled the Captcha requirement at the request of followers who find it irritating when posting comments. However to stop the subsequent flood of spam posts I can no longer accept comments from Anonymous sources.
Apologies if this is a problem
Thank you