Albert, watercolor with pen and ink on toned paper, Jeffrey Smith

An interesting thing happens when you get a dog…

You find yourself painting pictures of your dog…

I remember very distinctly sitting with some classmate when I was in art school. I’m sure it all started we were looking through an art magazine and came across an ad from an artist who did portraits of pets. As I recall, we all, being the mature and all-knowing age of 20, decided that we would never be caught dead painting pictures of someones pet. Our gifts would be far too precious and couldn’t be wasted on something as menial as painting a dog!

It turns out, like so many things that I thought I knew for sure when I was 20, I was wrong. I’m here to say that I, Jeffrey Smith, as the proud owner of a very curious and rambunctious 1-year-old yellow labrador named Albert, I had a great time painting my dog, and you know what? I’ll probably do it again!

About the paper

I do love finding great new art stuff— or at least new to me art stuff. I found this pad at Wet Paint here in St.Paul. It’s heavy-weight toned paper. In this case, think  light to mid value warm neutral with just a few fleck to give it some texture. The paper is about the weight of bristol, maybe a little heavier—120lbs. I don’t think that I would use it for a really wet watercolor was, but for sketching highlighted with a bit of watercolor or gouache, it works wonderfully!

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