Occasionally, I get requests from non-profit organizations to paint portraits for their benefit.  Generally they like me to donate custom portraits, where someone can bid on or donate money to the organization, then send me photos of their pet and have me do a custom portrait.  For some reason that’s not my preference though–I like to paint something, send it off, and be done with it.  When I paint for charity, however, I do try to paint portraits that would be attractive to a general audience rather than an individual pet owner.

The portrait below was painted for a cat rescue organization.  I chose a photo of my brother and sister-in-laws cat, Joey:

Joey Sleeps with the Fishes, acrylic on stretched canvas, 2003

I really liked this painting when it was done, and proudly called it "Joey Sleeps with the Fishes."  Unfortunately, the organization I was donating to thought that potential buyers might be offended by the tongue-in-cheek title.  "Sleeps with the fishes" implies a dead cat, afterall.  I reluctantly changed the title to "Joey Dreams of Fish."

In my heart, however, this painting will always be called "Joey Sleeps with the Fishes."  😉

Incidentally, I painted another portrait of Joey the following Christmas, which was intended to be a gift for my brother and his family:

Ball o’ Cat, acrylic on stretched canvas, 2004

Unfortunately, I’d neglected to prepare the canvas properly and when I varnished the completed painting it got completely ruined.   I was very disappointed by that since I really liked the painting.  Thankfully I photographed it before applying the varnish, so at least it still exists in the digital world.

2 Replies to “Here Fishy Fishy”

  1. Reekoe says: July 8, 2008 at 5:23 pm

    Those are beautiful! Thats absolutely wonderful that you donate some of your work to help shelters and rescues. Back in the day, I used to be somewhat of an artist, but it’s been so long since I’ve done anything I don’t know if I still have any talent LOL. Maybe I’ll have to break out some pencils and see what I can come up with.

  2. Antoinette says: April 19, 2007 at 8:09 am

    Awwww, I miss our Joey!
    I love the title and never would have you change it. Everyone’s an art critic I guess. I’m almost done with my latest piece and will have it up on my blog soon.

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