Stone Coal Studio

Stone Coal Studio

Thursday, November 24, 2016

Thanksgiving with a Yellow Labrador Painting to Approve.

Holiday advertising especially for "Black Friday" is everywhere: television TV, newspapers and social media.   Thankfully this week we have an opportunity to stop and reflect on what really makes a holiday: connecting with friends and family.

I want to begin this blog wishing you a "Happy Thanksgiving"!  
Enjoy this day in a way that makes it special for you.

Before the dinner is served, there is a painting that needs to be approved before it can be completed.   I often find it helpful when doing a dog portrait to get the opinion of someone who is familiar with the breed or with the dog (and that person is coming for dinner!).  This is even more important if I have not personally seen the dog and am working only from photographs.

Yellow Lab
by Judith Flynn Lochbrunner
acrylic on paper
10 x 10 inches

I chose three views of the dog to make it more than a dog portrait and to be a view into the life of this Yellow Lab.  The neutral and soft blue color palette for the background was chosen to fit well in the  family's home.  It also contrasts with the lights (whites/yellows/ochres) and darks (blues/umbers) in the dog's coat, ears, and features.  However a little quinacridone magenta was added to the mix to paint the nose.

(Notes are very time-savers as I have learned to write down color mixes for dog portraits.  Before I finish the paintings color samples are also added to the notebook for easy reference.)

My goal was for the work to exhibit a creative approach to painting a dog but still be realistic enough to look like this Yellow Lab.   Hopefully the family will agree when they receive the gift and give the dog lots of extra pets and attention!

Thank you for stopping by my blog.  Enjoy the start of the holiday season!


  1. Taking notes.... so wish I could remember to do that! Beautiful work :)

  2. I keep a notebook on the painting table for notes, sketches, and color mixes. I started doing it more consistently last January-- it was one of my resolutions. It has been very useful. Any notebook will do. I bet you have one in your studio already that you can use. Happy painting! Thanks for your nice comments.