by Charles T. Jackson
Well, as it turns out, set building has left me with some down time that I had not anticipated. I really thought that I would be able to fill all of my waking hours with all the set building that I had been doing while working a rotating shift, but that just has not been the case. I decided that it was time to expand the services that we offer here at Magic Time Stage Craft to include animal portraiture, but in a way that I don’t see offered anywhere else. During the Christmas season of 2012, I was making wood cut outs of animals for a friend to paint for her family and friends, and one for her to paint for one of my co-workers when she said, “I’m glad to have the business, but why don’t you paint this yourself?” Well that was quite a good question. The answer at the time was that she had painted all of the other Christmas ornaments that I had cut out for that same co-worker, so as a matter of visual continuity, I wanted her to paint the last piece as well. But after that, there really was no reason why I wasn’t making my own cut outs and painting them myself. So on May 17th, I decided to try a whole new thing and cut out a German shepherd shape, mounted it to a base, and painted it!!
My daughter named him Buddy, and he is now dog#1 and the official guard dog of by shop!! The idea of doing this had been sloshing around in my my for several months and as a result I had already compiled a list of dogs that I wanted to make painting of, and soon after Buddy was done I got started on Rufus.
I love English Bulldogs, but I am not a real lover of the drooly dog types, so this is as close to the real thing that I’ll ever own. It occurred to me that I could do these with almost any image and one day after Rufus was done, I decided to try a Monarch butterfly.
I wanted to really try and catch the brilliance of the colors in the wings of the image that I was painting from, and think I really pulled it off!! The next up was a challenging, wrinkly, multi colored Boxer that ultimately became known as Boots.
Now considering the fact that these are my first real forays into the world of painting with color, I felt pretty happy with having gotten close at all. It was a bit frustrating at first, but the learning process has developed from frustrating, to a fun daily artistic challenge. My next challenge was a puppy that I found irresistible, and I really spent some time trying to get all of the nuances of the colors right on this one.
I was thrilled with how he was turning out, and when he was finally done, many people were sure that I was posting a picture of a real dog!! What artist isn’t thrilled with hearing that, let alone one that makes art for the stage!! I was very pleased. In my next post I’ll discuss a cat that I painted in the image of a cat that we loved dearly while we had him, and how I’m dealing with the requests for images that have started rolling in!! Thanks for stopping by.