“After our Shih Tzu, Winnie passed in November, I decided to commission a portrait of her as a gift to my husband. I was looking for an artist who not only had a high level of representational skill but also made the leap of capturing the heart and soul of the portrait subject. As an Art History major and as person with a background in advertising, I had a true appreciation of the difference. This is why I chose Dawn B. Dwyer.
Thank you for the incredibly special portrait of Winnie. You truly captured her essence.
Dawn, I don’t know if you were aware of my two daughter’s response to the portrait when you brought it over and they had the chance to see it. They were so moved by the painting that they both cried when you left.
You were a true gift to our family!”Barb Gehrig Cincinnati, OH
This is the process that I did to create the official portrait of Euka. I will post a few pictures each day till we have the completed painting. So be sure to check back each day to eventually see the completed painting.
Creating a portrait of an animal always starts with a photograph. Once I have the photo I will work with it to find the perfect composition. Euka got to sit on some chairs for this photo because we wanted to be sure she would givet off the essence of feeling important. By elevating her from the floor it changed her demeanor.
I was also looking for a certain light to make the portrait more interesting. So there is cool light coming from the window on the right side of the portrait and warm light in the shadow.
Next I did a quick oil sketch to block in the shapes of the painting.
Hours before the reveal at the Procter & Gamble Mason office, Dawn B. Dwyer was photographed with the oil painting, Euka, which was about to be unveiled to the Procter & Gamble Pet Division. Euka served over 50 dog years as the V. P. of K9 Communication. During her time of service she was even featured on the cover of Fortune Magazine, in 2004.
A grand retirement party was held in her honor where the official portrait of Euka was revealed. It was an honor for Dawn to be chosen to capture this magnificent yellow labrador retriever in an oil painting. The whole experience was a lot of fun! Dawn will be posting the “Making of the Portrait of Euka” in the next few days at www.dawnbdwyer.com
You can also see more of the oil paintings of Dawn B. Dwyer on April 27th & April 28th at the Pendleton Art Center.
Painting is almost ready for the SPCA Doggie Dash Reveal!
This event has always been a lot of fun! It is not only a walk but there are various vendors to visit prior to the actual walk. I have been a participant of this event for many years and both my dogs and I love it!!! I have even come alone with just my dogs and ended up meeting new friends by the end of the day. There are usually lots of goodies your dog will enjoy as well.In the past there have been over 600 participants and it is quite amazing to see all the beautiful dogs that come to this event. It’s quite a spectacular view and inspiring to be a part of this large wave of animal lovers that come together for the Doggie Dash. We all gather to have a great time with our pets (otherwise known as the furry family members), while doing something very important…raising money to care for animals in need.
“Pretty Please …” 20×16 oil/canvas by Dawn B. Dwyer
This painting was a lot of fun to do as I collaborated with my niece who was on a secret mission in PA to photograph this pup so that we could paint it together here in Ohio. She wanted to do an oil painting for her father. So as I did this painting, I was also helping her to do her own. She did a similar painting of this same pose in a 12″ x 12″ and gave it as a gift to her father. After she went home to PA, I continued to work on it until I was able to get the look I wanted. Every dog owner knows this look.
One of our Miniature Pinschers, Lady Ally Von Zeus was so kind as to model for this painting.
She was sitting on my husband’s lap and her eyes were following me as I moved through the room. The sun was shining in through the window and also down through the skylight which created the glow on the side of her face. Her eyes are so expressive and really communicate how she is feeling.
I once had a stranger approach me when I was at a dog park. She said, “Wow … when you look into your dogs eyes, you can see her soul through those eyes”. I was quite moved by that comment as I didn’t know the woman and she really only approached me to get a better look into my dog’s eyes. I always saw this in Ally, but didn’t realize that other people would see that too when looking into her amazing eyes, so when creating this painting, the eyes had to be the focal point.
In April, 2010 our 22 yr. old nephew, Derik, was diagnosed with Burkitt’s Lymphoma. It’s an aggressive but curable form of cancer. Unfortunately Derik is no longer covered by his parent’s medical insurance and the doctors suspect that Derik will be unable to work for about a year. So we are all trying to find ways to help him and his family with this tremendous financial burden. After discussing with Derik, the idea of donating an oil painting to be raffled off, he mentioned that he would like it if I would do a painting of a Bengal Tiger. For anyone that is a Cincinnati Bengals fan, this would make a lot of sense but I chose to paint the Bengal Tiger for more than one reason. First it is a beautiful animal and the posture of the tiger shows so much focus, determination and strength which are all things that Derik will need to get through his fight with cancer. I wanted the painting to also tell his story. The journey will not necessarily be without obstacles but just as the tiger moves through the water with ease and strength so will Derik to get to the other side (the healthy side). The title on the painting has a double meaning and was named by Derik’s father, Scott Dwyer.
The eyes of the tiger are painted in a way that as you walk from one side of the room to the other, the tiger’s eyes will follow you. It’s a very interesting sensation to experience the eyes of a painting following you.
This painting was donated to raise money for the Dwyer Cancer Relief Fund and the winner was announced at a Pig Roast Benefit that was held for Derik in July of 2010.