Odin. Oil on wood panel. 8″X10″

This painting was commissioned to be gifted to a family that lost their dog, Odin. It was sudden, unexpected, and way too soon.  

When making an in-memoriam painting there’s usually no recent photos. So your painting becomes a compilation of a few photos merged together. That’s exactly how I approached this portrait.

Because Odin’s body is cropped out of the original photo, I spent time researching the anatomy of Boxers so I could get the chest region to look accurate. This research gave me the information I needed to get a more formal composition.

After establishing the composition I made a few more adjustments. The only specific request for this painting was to simplify the background. I took the classical portraiture approach and went with a soft gradient.

The color in the original photo is very neon (Cameras have a tendency to do that). To achieve a more natural, classical appearance I worked with a limited palette and deepened the shadows. The limited palette allowed the painting to appear more uniform.

 All the edits came together to a very classical style portrait. Since this was a gift I didn’t get to hear directly from the family that received it. I did get an update from the gifter that the family was touched and loved it. Though the circumstances were not ideal, I am happy I got to honor and memorialize Odin.


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