30 in 30: Day 16 "Zoey" Pet Portrait + Process Photos

pet portrait commissioned painting by amira rahim Hey guys! Today it rained in Abu Dhabi and stormed with hail in other parts. It's been a gray, cloudy day, and I'm not complaining. I decided to spend my day indoors and get to some of the commissions ahead of me. This is of a sweet dog named Zoey who passed away recently. She was a joy to paint. I loved capturing her coat and sweet nature. I had many photos to choose from, but thought this captured her in a simple, but pretty light.

I decided to capture the process and share it with you, so here it goes:

This was the reference photo. After a few sketches and composition options, I decided the zoomed in crop of her face and collar would be best.

After working out the drawing in pencil, I then went over it in black gresso, bringing in the basic shapes and shadows that would define the painting.

Since the owner wanted a fairly realistic rendition of Zoey, I knew I wouldn't be using much color in this piece. So, I decided to tone the canvas in magenta. It makes for a nice graphic effect against black and white, and it is feminine, which can reflect the dog's sex.

I used Paynes grey, titanium white, raw umber, and indian red for most of the fur and features. I also decided to lift some of the highlighted areas with a little cerulean blue.

Propped my iPad up on the easel for most of the painting. As you can see, I painted from the photograph without any editing or fiddling. Just dove right in. I really need to invest in an iPad stand since I use my iPad so much in the studio!

I'm happy with how well the portrait came out. I don't typically paint dogs or cats, but some are just adorable and this girl was no exception. The final portrait moved the original owner to tears, so I can say, my job here is done. All on a rainy day's work!

Typical Weekend in AD

The weekend finally came after a long week of painting, art classes, and general life crap. Started with dinner out at P. F. Changs.

20140614-111723-40643749.jpg

I love love love Asian food. Thai, Chinese, Japanese are my favorites in that order. So this was a happy start to the weekend.

Yesterday we went to go see Maleficent, which was hands down the greatest Disney movie ever.

20140614-111920-40760536.jpg

Angelina Jolie was absolutely stunning. Her performance, as always, blew me away. Love her movies and this one was a nice addition!

I spent the rest of the afternoon staring at the art on Nando's walls instead of finishing my food.

20140614-112056-40856970.jpg

This wasn't even half of the amazing art collection at the restaurant chain. Very impressed and this just inspires me to keep chasing my dream of being a full-time artist. Anything can happen!

20140614-112207-40927989.jpg

Finally, I did this illustration last night before bed. Every time I get henna done I'm inspired to incorporate the delicate designs into my art somehow. This illustration is called "I Bet the Bees Play in Her Hair" and marries my love for curly Afros with black and white illustration.

What are you guys up to this weekend? Any new inspirations?