Tuesday, October 18, 2011

New Fun Frames: Another Breed of Rainbowdog Joins the Pack

I've heard so much positive feedback about my dog paintings in decorated frames -- now on exhibit at the Easttown Library -- that I've decided to offer them for sale as custom portraits alongside my larger-than-life Rainbowdog portraits.  My husband came up with a (tentative) name for them: Fun Frames, which does pretty much hit the nail on the head. 

What's the difference between a Fun Frame and the 'standard' Rainbowdog? The Fun Frames include the same vibrant dogs but have intricate patterened backgrounds and come in a slightly smaller 11 x 14 inch size.  Each has a solid wood frame, hand painted and decorated to coordinate with your portrait, embellished with a your dog's name or a humorous saying in funky decoupage writing. 

From canvas to frame, each piece is hand painted, extremely personal, and packs a powerful visual punch.  And the size means that everybody has room for a Rainbowdog portrait, no matter how limited their space.

If you would like to commission a Fun Frame or a Rainbowdog, please send me an email.  Now is the time to order for the holidays!

Please let me know your thoughts, either with a comment here, or join the conversation on facebook.  As always, thanks for sharing my art with your family and friends.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Easttown Library Goes to the Dogs

An exhibit of a dozen Rainbowdog paintings is hanging in the Easttown Library in Berwyn, PA for the month of October. The library hosts different artists nearly every month, and I'm happy to add my pack of dog paintings to their number.

Here are a few pictures of the Rainbowdogs among the stacks.

The dogs really brighten up the library, if I do say so myself.  They can do the same for your house, too. Now is a great time to commission a portrait as a special holiday gift.  Just shoot me an email if you'd like to get started.

Rainbowdog Pet Portraits.  Life's more fun when it's colorful!

Friday, September 23, 2011

Exploring a New Approach to Dog Paintings

Here are the first four paintings in a planned series of non-commissioned dog paintings. I will be offering these - and more to come - as prints.  Still working on titles for some of these, but I do believe a good title really lifts a picture from the ordinary.  Feel free to leave suggestions for titles in the comments section!

1) "Did You Forget Something?"

2) "Walkies?"

3) "My Couch"

4) "Short Legs, Big Ball"

I am having a great time with the colors and patterns in these paintings. If you have a great picture of a dog -- that you have taken yourself -- that you would like to see transformed into a Rainbowdog original, send it along. If I use it, I'll send you a free print. Don't forget to suggest a title!

I hope to hear from you!

Friday, August 26, 2011

Yellow Lab in Color

As you probably know, I love to use unconventional color to make my portraits sing, and I really had a blast with this latest commission of a yellow lab, a 20 x 24 inch acrylic on gallery-wrap canvas.

The "light" in this painting is coming strongly from the side, allowing me to make some beautiful rainbow shadows on the "dark side" of the dog's face. There is also a lot of energy coming from the red shadow against that green background. Who remembers from elementary school that green and red are opposites on the color wheel? That means they are complementary colors, and an artist gets the most tension and contrast when they are next to each other. (Don't mix them together though, unless you want mud.)

If you'd like to see your pet come to life on canvas just like this, it's easy -- and fun! -- to commission a Rainbowdog. Just send me an email. I look forward to hearing from you.

Thank you for sharing my art with your family and friends.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Thee Amigos

This one of my latest paintings is large, at 24 by 36 inches, but I needed that space to capture the larger-than-life personalities of my subjects, three different dogs all from one family. They are a happy bunch, and I used vivid color to help convey the joy and camaraderie these pups share.
The original photograph I worked from came courtesy of Sarah A., and her dogs' names are from left, Kita, Scout and Ruby.  The portrait is an acrylic, as usual, on gallery-wrapped canvas with the painting continuing around the sides.  I love the way the electric green glow around these guys makes them pop from the background.

If you'd like to commission your own Rainbowdog portrait, just send me an email.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Vibrant Bulldog "Miss Weezer" is a Winner

Readers may remember this fabulous photograph of Miss Weezer, submitted by her owner to the Rainbowdog Dead-of-Winter Portrait Giveaway contest earlier this year.  Who could forget a face like that?

Well, Miss W didn't win the portrait contest, but that didn't stop me from capturing her adorable mug on canvas a few months later. To keep the focus on Miss Weezer's face, I removed her bandana, but made sure to emphasize her soulful expression and those distinctive bulldog teeth!  I also enlivened the entire portrait with bright bands of color.

Bulldogs are lots of fun to paint. One of the first Rainbowdogs I ever painted was a bully named Gracie, and I liked her portrait so well that I used it on my business card for quite some time.  Gracie's portrait is also part of a book of bulldog art created by Art 4 Causes entitled Full of Bull.  Purchases of the book go to bulldog charity.

If you have a bulldog you'd like to see immortalized on canvas, send me an email. I'd love to get working on those wrinkles!

Rainbowdog Pet Portraits: Life's more fun when it's colorful.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Feel the Joy: A Rough Collie "in the Pink"

This Rough Collie's expression just radiates happiness, don't you think? I tried to capture that spirit of joy in this 24 x 30 inch portrait, and keep the mood warm and vibrant with a striking pink background.

In a little bit of a change for me, I also added some strong black line to this portrait. Collies are naturally somewhat "frosted" with sable and black fur, and I wanted to exaggerate that feature while making my subject Maggie pop from her strong background color. I am really pleased with the result. This painting makes me smile every time I look at it. (Is it wrong to be a little in love with my own painting? Maybe . . . )

Alert readers may notice that I am not exactly on pace to complete 50 paintings this year, since it's mid-May and this portrait is only number 11. Don't worry though, folks. I have been planning some new work on a smaller scale that -- I think -- is going to significantly up my output before summer is over.

Stay tuned!

And remember, it's always a good time to commission a portrait of your own Rainbowdog. Just send me an email and we can get started.

Rainbowdog Pet Portraits. Life's more fun when it's colorful!

Friday, April 29, 2011

Painting #10: Are You Talking to Me?

I love the attitude and expression on the face of this cattle-dog mix.  This Rainbowdog portrait is a 20 x 20 inch square on gallery wrapped canvas with the painting continued around the sides.

Today was such a nice day I thought I'd take the dog (painting) out for some fresh air and see if I could get a color-accurate photograph of my portrait.  (What you see above has been photoshopped to get the color to look as close to real-life as possible.)

I have a deep respect for photographers. It is quite difficult to get accurate color reproduction, whether inside or using natural light.  No matter how sophisticated our automatic cameras get, I still believe there is no substitute for a knowledgeable and skilled photographer behind the lens. See how my dog looks a bit washed out in this photo?

For those of you interested in my process, here's a peek at my palette near the end of work on this painting.  Still not quite sure what I thought I was going to do with that cadmium red mixture there on the right. Certainly I did not use it much in this painting!

Would you like a Rainbowdog original of your pet? It's easy and fun to commission a portrait!

Just email me: janetburt@verizon.net, and we can design the portrait that's right for you.
You can get more information at my website: rainbowdog.net
Check out what's new on facebook: facebook.com/rainbowdogpetportraits

Rainbowdog Pet Portraits: Life's more fun when its colorful!

Friday, April 15, 2011

Painting #9: Doxie Up Close & Personal

I had a lot of fun with this portrait of a long-haired dachshund, a 12 x 12 inch painting destined for a child's bedroom.
The bold outlines give the portrait a certain punch that I especially love, and the colors are just right for spring-time.  

Would you like a Rainbowdog original of your pet? It's easy and fun to commission a portrait!
Just email me: janetburt@verizon.net, and We can design the portrait that's right for you.
You can get more information at my website: rainbowdog.net
Check out what's new on facebook: facebook.com/rainbowdogpetportraits

Rainbowdog Pet Portraits: Life's more fun when its colorful!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Painting #8: Retirement Dreams

I just love the expression on the face of this grizzled Border Collie named Remi. This is a 20 x 24 inch portrait on my usual gallery-wrapped canvas - no framing necessary.
According to his owner Debbie Schwagerman,  my model Remi is "a 14-year-old man we rescued from a rural Oklahoma shelter just 3 1/2 weeks ago. We just adore this dog already and this picture just screams JOY." I couldn't agree more.
Although Remi might just be enjoying the spring breeze here, I imagined that he had a little more on mis mind.  That's why I included a fantasy world of biscuits and bunnies and a toy running through his brain. Whatever Remi was really thinking about, I believe we could all learn a thing or two from dogs and their Zen approach to life.

If you would like to commission your own Rainbowdog original,
just send me an email: janetburt@verizon.net
For more information, visit my website: rainbowdog.net
Interact with Rainbowdog on facebook: facebook.com/rainbowdogpetportraits 

Rainbowdog Pet Portraits: Life's more fun when it's colorful.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Painting #7: A Day at the Beach

Here's one of my latest commissions, a 30 x 40 inch acrylic on gallery wrapped canvas, of Rosey, a black lab who lived a wonderful life frolicking at the beach near her house in Massachusetts.
Most of the Rainbowdog portraits have a simple, one-or-two color background, but the beach played such an important part in Rosey's life that it seemed appropriate to include it in her memorial portrait.

I enjoy mixing things up and creating something a little different with each portrait. Our pets are such individuals that it makes sense to create portraits that are individual and special too.  My clients know their pets best, so I love to incorporate their ideas.

Would you like to commemorate a special pet with a Rainbowdog portrait? It's easy!
Send me an email to get the process started: janetburt@verizon.net
For more information, visit my website: rainbowdog.net
You can also follow my progress on facebook: facebook.com/rainbowdogpetportraits

Rainbowdog Pet Portraits: Life is colorful here.

Monday, April 4, 2011

Mug Shots: Canine Art Guild Show

If you're a fan of dog art (and, I'm thinking that's likely if you're reading this), you should definitely visit the newest online exhibition showing at the Canine Art Guild, entitled "Mug Shots." The variety of styles and artistic visions on display will inspire you -- either to commission a portrait of your own dog, or maybe to get a puppy.

My submissions included these three acrylic paintings:


 Rudy, a recent commission you may recognize, retitled for this exhibition as "Power Smile;"

 and Devon, titled "Waiting for my Buddy."

Works by other artists in this show I particularly love are:

Tyra, My Perfect Valentine by Jane Oriel;

Aussie Pup by Harry Boardman;

 Dog Peek,  by Heather Mitchell;

and Cautious Observation by Cristina Penescu (yes, there is some photography, too)!

These is just a small sampling of the 60 works on display. Let me know which ones are your favorites!

Need more information or want to commission your own Rainbowdog? 
Send me an email: janetburt@verizon.net
Visit my website: rainbowdog.net

Rainbowdog Pet Portraits. Life is colorful here.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Portrait # 6: Power Smile

Check out the power smile on this English Bull Terrier, a 20 x 20 inch acrylic painting on gallery-wrapped canvas.  I knew the minute I saw this photograph that it would make a charming portrait.

Generally I don't like to share pictures of my work in progress, because I can sometimes make major changes midstream and lose all respect for the direction I chose initially! However, occasionally things proceed in a relatively straight line (as in this case), so I've included a few photos to illustrate how this portrait developed.

First is the photo I started with from my client. The shadows across the mouth are a bit strong, but otherwise it's clear, in focus, and chock-full of personality! A successful portrait always comes more quickly and easily when I'm able to begin with high-quality photographs.

My first step was to paint a burnt sienna undercoat over the entire canvas, which helps bring warmth to a portrait, and then roughed in my shapes with watered-down paint. Generally I sketch my subjects in a bit more detail, but I knew where I was going with this painting so was able to dive right in.

 Next I started to add lights and darks and build up layers of color in the background.

Between this stage and the completed portrait, I also opted to change the position of the leg in the lower right hand corner, straightening it out in a more conventional pose.

I've submitted this portrait,"Power Smile," along with two others, to the "Mug Shots" exhibition, an online art show hosted by the Canine Art Guild, which will go live around April 1.  I'll keep you posted on where to go to view all the entries and how to vote for your favorites.

Need more information or want to commission your own Rainbowdog? 
Send me an email: janetburt@verizon.net
Visit my website: rainbowdog.net

Rainbowdog Pet Portraits: Life is Colorful Here.


Monday, February 28, 2011

Greetings from Rainbowdog

I just designed a new business greeting card featuring some of my portraits, inspired by the lure of a freebie through  Shutterfly.  Thought I'd try out the free sample cards and decide whether to order more.  On the inside it reads, "Life is colorful here."

I can't say that it looks as good in this format, with the Shutterfly advertising, as it did when I designed it, but they offered me a $25 coupon toward future orders if I shared it "their way."  What's a girl to do?  Anyhow, I'm very excited to see how the finished cards look.  What do you think?

Classic Black 5x7 folded card
Create personalized greeting cards and invitations by Shutterfly.
View the entire collection of cards.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Results are In: Barney the Beagle Wins Dead-of-Winter Portrait Giveaway Contest

Rainbowdog fans cast their votes in my portrait giveaway contest, and the overwhelming favorite was this picture of a beagle named Barney. With that soulful expression, is it any wonder he was chosen ?

To make a portrait of this little guy, I cropped the picture to present more of a closeup, then added a bright and simple background.  I didn't get too crazy with my colors on this portrait, because Barney's mom is more of a traditionalist, and asked that I keep impressionist colors to a minimum.

This particular portrait was painted in acrylic on recycled board, and will go off the the lucky winner in a repurposed frame that I repainted in gold to pick up the golden highlights in Barney's fur.

If you would like to commission your own Rainbowdog, please email me at janetburt@verizon.net.  You can learn more at the Rainbowdog website, and keep updated on future contests at the Rainbowdog Pet Portraits facebook page. 

Rainbowdog. Painting 50 portraits in 2011

Friday, February 18, 2011

Stella! Valentine Dog is Portrait #5 in 2011

I had to hold off posting about this painting of my dog Stella to keep it a surprise until after Valentine's Day. My husband had been wanting a portrait of Stella, who has been a member of our household for a little over a year now, but she had somehow escaped being committed to canvas -- until now.

This painting is 24 x 30 inch acrylic on gallery-wrapped canvas.  I frequently leave collars and dog tags out of paintings, but since Stella really does have a dog tag shaped like a red heart I included it as an extra Valentine touch.

If you would like to commission your own Rainbowdog, please email me, at janetburt@verizon.net.  Visit my website for more information about sizes and prices and my process.  You can also keep up-to-date on projects and special deals on the Rainbowdog Pet Portraits facebook page.

Rainbowdog Pet Portraits: Painting 50 portraits in 2011.

Friday, January 28, 2011

50 in 2011: Bella the Bichon-Poodle Mix is Portrait #4

Just in time to melt some hearts, if not the excessive amounts of snow we've all been enduring, here is my portrait of Bella, a Bichon-Poodle mix.

It's always fun to paint fluffy dogs, so I had a good time painting this 16 x 20 inch acrylic portrait.  Bella's mom intends to frame this picture, so I painted it on a traditional, 3/4 inch deep canvas.  Clients can always choose between the traditional, "frameable" depth canvas and the gallery-wrap I most frequently use, which can be hung as-is, no frame needed.

Here's one of the pictures of Bella I used for reference.  It's not the one I worked directly from, but I love the "over the shoulder" pose.

For color inspiration on this portrait, I even had a swatch of wallpaper where the portrait will hang!

My client was worried that giving me colors she wanted and wallpaper samples would limit me, but I welcomed the input.  After all, I'm working to make a keepsake my clients will love that also fits with their decor.

If you'd like to commission your own Rainbowdog portrait, please email me at janetburt@verizon.net.  You can learn more about sizes, prices and my process, on my website, rainbowdog.net

Rainbowdog Pet Portraits: Painting 50 Portraits in 2011.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Announcing the Rainbowdog Dead-of-Winter Portrait Giveaway!

Bring a little warmth to winter by entering the Rainbowdog Dead-of-Winter Portrait Giveaway Contest.  If you submit the winning photo, you will win a custom 9 x 12 inch portrait of your pet!

Here are the details. To enter, email a photo of your pet to me, at janetburt@verizon.net.  Because of the size of this portrait, please include only one pet per photo, and please send only one entry per pet. By all means, enter multiple photos if you have multiple pets! 

Once I receive entries from 30 people (I'll keep entries open at least until the end of this week), I will post the photos in an album on the Rainbowdog facebook page. Get your friends and acquaintances to vote for your entry by clicking "like." Voting will be open another week, or longer if needed, until someone has at least 20 unique votes. And yes, you can vote for your own photo, but only one time.  Winner will get a custom 9 x 12 Rainbowdog acrylic portrait from the winning photo!

I have two objectives with this contest/giveaway. I'd like to introduce more people to my art, obviously. But I'm also introducing a new greener Rainbowdog offering. The winning portrait will be painted on recycled board (which just means I've acquired large pieces of thin board that will make good painting supports), rather than on canvas. I've chosen the 9 x 12 size because I also have an upcycled frame in that size, and will include the frame with the portrait if the winner wants it.  

Eventually I hope to move the majority of my paintings over to upcycled/recycled wood supports, presented in refurbished frames.  They look fabulous AND help cut down on the amount of "stuff" in our landfills.

So get your cameras out (you might first want to watch my video on how to take better dog pictures, posted on the Rainbowdog facebook page), tell your friends to do the same, and send me your pictures. I can't wait to see them!

Sunday, January 23, 2011

50 in 2011: Yellow Lab "Snickers the Wonder Dog" is Portrait #3

I have a soft spot for yellow Labs. My husband and I both grew up with a yellow Lab as the family dog, and our first dog together was the uncreatively-named-yet-wonderfully-special yellow Lab Daisy.  So I was particularly pleased to paint Snickers, known in her family by her full title, Snickers the Wonder Dog.

This portrait is a 24 x 30 inch acrylic painting on gallery-wrapped canvas.  At this dramatic size, Snickers appears on canvas pretty close to life-size - perhaps even a bit larger.  To help you compare, here's a picture of Snickers (the dog) posing with Snickers (the portrait).  She seems fairly humble and unaffected by all the attention.

This portrait was a surprise birthday present for Snickers's human "Mom." The rest of the family hung the portrait in the living room while Mom was out and waited for her to discover it. Now that's creative gift-giving!

If you'd like to commission your own portrait, email Janet Burt at janetburt@verizon.net, or visit Rainbowdog on the web for more details.  You can also check out special deals and get inside information on upcoming projects on the Rainbowdog Pet Portraits facebook page.

I'm just beginning my series of 50 portraits in 2011 (the year I turn 50 myself - gasp).  Join me in my quest to turn a mid-life crisis into beautiful art and commission your own portrait today.

Rainbowdog - Painting 50 Portraits in 2011.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

50 in 2011: Dodger the Corgi Sparkles on Canvas as Portrait #2 by Janet Burt

I knew when I saw the photo of this adorable Corgi that I could turn it into a fantastic portrait.

Dodger the portrait is a 12 x 16 inch acrylic painting on gallery-wrapped canvas.  Dodger the dog is a 13-year-old Corgi who has already risen to fame as the Corgi of the Day on thedailycorgi.com.  You can read all about him and see more pictures by clicking here.

Dodger's "mom," singer Susan Stevens Mooring, has even written a song in tribute to her fur baby entitled Blues for Dodger.  No recording is available to share with you at the moment, but if Susan ever makes one I'll be sure to update this post.  Not many (if ANY) dogs have their own blues song, after all.  Here's a small sampling of the lyrics (copyright Susan Stevens Mooring):

He may be red and white, but he’s got a right to sing the blues
I say he may be a red and white dog, but he’s got a right to sing the blues
Let him tell you his story, hear this little Corgi’s views

Can't wait to hear that set to music.

If you'd like a portrait of your own unique dog (or cat), email Janet at janetburt@verizon.net.  You can visit Rainbowdog on the web, or on facebook, too.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Butter the Basset Hound Mix

Here's the final version Butter, my first portrait of 2011, and Number 1 in my projected series of fifty portraits for the year.

 Completing this particular painting was fraught with obstacles.  Before I began painting, my not-that-ancient Mac computer died (didn't know Macs ever died, did you?), and since I only back up my files weekly, some data, including the photos Butter's dad had sent me, were lost.  Once those were replaced (THANK YOU), there were issues of deceptive lighting in the photos to deal with.  I struggled to get his wrinkles painted in accurately.  But finally, after several revisions, I was able to complete Butter to my client's satisfaction, and I'm rolling on to portrait #2: Dodger.

Isn't that the cutest smile? Dodger has actually enjoyed his fifteen minutes of fame already, having been featured on The Daily Corgi blog here.   I'll be posting his finished portrait by the end of the week.  Stay tuned.