Hello again! What a busy few weeks its been. Today I delivered my latest commissioned painting – a portrait of an Alaskan Malamute – to its new owners and to my delight, they were over the moon with it! Having worked from a provided photograph rather than photos I’ve taken myself, it was a little nerve wracking showing the painting for the first time. The owners know the dog’s every whisker – where as I had never met her in person, and only had a selection of photos to go from. There was no need to worry – it seems I captured her ‘just right’! Big smiley faces all round 🙂 😀 :p

Portrait Painting of Alaskan Malamute by Mandi Baykaa-Murray

Finished Portrait of Alaskan Malamute 9 1/2″ x 12″ Acrylic

With the portrait finished, I began a new painting of a Barn Owl. I’ve been sketching various ideas/compositions in my sketchbook,  planning possible combinations of location shots (trees, fields, paths etc) with different photos of George the Barn Owl from the falconry centre. I had several sketches with good potential for being developed into paintings and as I was deciding which image to draw on which size/format canvas, a relatively large, previously used square canvas caught my eye… That was it – no sketch required, an image popped into my mind and before I knew it, I was drawing it out directly on the canvas using brush and paint!! A scene I had photographed a couple of months ago was there, in front of me on my canvas! Here it is…the latest background, waiting for a Barn Owl to take up residence on the branch in the foreground!

Background for new barn owl painting by Mandi Baykaa-Murray

I’m really looking forward to a quiet day next week so I can start work on the owl!!

In half term, I popped down to Cornwall for a few days where I was lucky enough to attend a colour theory lesson and also an oil painting demonstration. Below is a very quick watercolour study of George the Barn Owl using only a cool colour palette. Now I have to do the same painting again but using a warm colour palette. It was a great exercise which really got the brain cells working hard!!

Watercolour study of barn owl using cool colours by Mandi Baykaa-Murray

In the oil painting demo, Sian Bowen showed us how to paint a seascape in oils. Having to travel by train the next day, I chose to use acrylics but tried to use them in an oil painterly way. Seascapes are not my usual choice of subject, but I gave it a go, and here is the result…a lovely piece of the Cornish coast!

Painting of Cornish Coastline by Mandi Baykaa-Murray


Last week, I went to proof-read our entry in the North Somerset Arts Week Catalogue….ITS GETTING CLOSER!!!!! Looking forward to a few quiet painting days so I can work on my latest barn owl! 🙂

Happy painting, Mandi 😉