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12 Months of Gratitude 2022 - Number 5!


Fudge & Skye's Portrait with Suzy (below left) celebrating her surprise birthday present from her husband Ian. 2022.

There are some people in life that you will always look back on with enormous gratitude and this beautiful couple are those such people. In fact, I would go as far as to say that Suzy and Ian gave me my very first commission around eight years ago. As any budding artist knows, the first time someone asks you to create work for them, it is worth far more than the project itself. Suddenly somebody is saying that they like your work, they really like it enough to proudly display it onto their walls, somewhere that they look at every day. It's also somebody saying that they believe in you, that you have what it takes to make other people happy through your art and well, that means everything!

I have seen Fudge grow from a cute fluffy puppy and into the gorgeous senior dog that he now is, he has such a beautiful personality and gets some serious attention from admirers wherever he goes. I've learned to love him, he was the mature influential dog when I got my puppy and he was so patient with her when she annoyingly nibbled at his ears!

The bond between Fudge and Suzy is clear to see, he never leaves her side and she returns the love in bucketloads, its very special. Suzy always wanted another dog to keep Fudge company and the story of Skye was lovely, the family met a gorgeous female Golden Retriever named Skye whilst on holiday and the rest of course is history.

Fudge in Filey - acrylics on canvas 2016

The first time that Ian asked me to do a pet portrait of Fudge as a surprise for Suzy's birthday was something that I will never forget as it was also the first time that I had painted with acrylics. This can be a difficult medium to master for the best of artists, let alone a new one but I did my best and was really happy with the result. The family have a love of the sea and now have a lovely holiday home at their beloved Filey, just a short walk away from the beach. It therefore seemed to be appropriate to paint Fudge walking on the beachfront where they often walk as a family. This painting has been beautifully framed and hangs on the hallway walls to remind them of those magical days by the sea with Fudge.

Ian once again contacted me earlier this year to ask if I would do a second portrait only this time, with both dogs. As before this was a surprise birthday present for Suzy only this time the canvas size was much bigger than before and was created entirely in pastel on a bespoke sheet of De-Teintes paper. Suzy was absolutely delighted with this portrait and it now hangs in pride of place above their dining room table.

This year I'm looking back at all of the artwork that I have been asked to create for Suzy and Ian with enormous pride and gratitude, I'm honestly not sure if I would have had the confidence to progress if it wasn't for their ongoing support in all that I do. Thank you both so very much. xx


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