It’s all about being at home for everyone right now and some of us have found solace in slowing down. I know my own Art supplier (Ken Bromleys) have half the staff in their warehouse right now with twice the orders! I like to think that all of you out there who yearn to be creative but are always so busy, finally have this great opportunity to get busy. It’s proven to be good for your mental health, and right now maintaining our mental health is super important. If you’ve been creating at home, please share your results to my FB page, AmandaReynoldsART I would love to see them.
finished working on a Black & White Frenchie. A beautifully textured oil
pastel, available to buy from the website today.
The original painting is available to buy as well as prints
of the picture too.
You can shop for this or more dog art on the website.
I’m still keeping busy with Pet Portraits during isolation,
the only difference being, they’ll be staying with me in the studio until
things return to normal.
Here’s a peep at one of the commissions I’m working on during
Lock Down. A cute watercolour of two brothers and their dog. I originally
created a similar picture for my returning customer, when they just got the
Labrador as a puppy and the boys were pre-schoolers. She would like me to paint
them all as they grow up together. Isn’t that just the best idea?
A bit of
The dogs are rubbish at social distancing I’ve noticed.
“I’m off to Pets At Home does anyone need anything?”
sound advice for all of us right now so please #stayhome #staysafe
I HOPE YOU STAY SAFE!
This March the new ‘Let’s Get Personal’ dog breeds collection has launched. You can now choose a breed of dog and personalise your print with their name and 3 personality traits of their very individual own. Bin Raider | Cat Chaser | Shoe Chewer | Ball Addict… which personality type is your dog?
Make it personal; it’s the thought that counts. Gift a personalised print.
March Madness Be the first to buy the NEW PRINT RELEASES this month and get them at the new release DISCOUNTED rate.
Made Just For Her | Mother’s Day GiftIdeas
FAMILY MATTERS You can order a beautiful watercolour print just for Mum this Mother’s Day. Flood it with Love Hearts and add the whole family.
His owner tried to castrate him. It’s an old idea some people have, that they can save some money to do it themselves. When it all went wrong, the owner dumped the donkey. Rolo was found with blood leaking from a large wound around his genitals and nearly died from being left to bleed to death. This is just one story of many.
I’ve created a little Donkey painting just for them, after hearing about Jenny being taken advantage of by another artist. She is young, very lovely, and has great compassion and kindness for animals. It really gets my goat (pun intended) when good people are treated like rubbish for the gains of others!
The Wonkey Donkey Sanctuary is a charity based in Knottingley. There are loads of great charities, it’s hard to know who to support and why. Yet as I learned more about this place, the people behind it, not the donkeys, I knew this was an even more worthy cause.
At 10 years old Jenny suffered an accident at school and broke her foot. The hospital ignored it was broken for the first few weeks, before finally putting it in plaster. The shock, pain and trauma led Jenny to become hypersensitive. Her illness worsened to the point where Jenny had to be home schooled and had to learn to read and write all over again. The doctors said it was her bodies response to the extreme trauma and pain she had experienced.
They called it conversion syndrome. You can read the full article about her story in the Yorkshire Post.
When Jenny started to show an interest in horses and donkeys her family decided to try to help her recovery and bought her first donkey. They rescued a baby donkey called Buttons and slowly they helped each other on a special journey of recovery, together. Jenny decided if Buttons helped her recover, she was going to help other donkeys too. And set about building her Donkey Sanctuary dream from scratch, with the help of her family.
In 2017 Jenny took a well earned break from her tireless efforts looking after the sanctuary and attended the Arriella Grande concert in Manchester. At the end of the concert her Aunties arrived to collect Jenny and her cousin, to take them home when their whole lives changed forever.
Jenny’s Aunties were stood next to the bomber, in The Kill Zone, when the bomb went off. You can read part of their story here from the ITV report.
I first met Jenny as she collected a signed Anthony Joshua photograph and T-Shirt that she’d had framed at the gallery and framers where I was working that day. Pomfret Gallery.
I was intrigued into how she had met Anthony Joshua (a famous boxer) when she briefly mentioned she had met him whilst in hospital visiting her Aunties.
Around this traumatic time an artist contacted the donkey sanctuary and asked them if they would be interested in a donkey picture to help raise funds for the charity, Jenny said yes that would be great. They were struggling for funds due to having to spend so much time at the hospital. After the artist left the painting she then subsequently invoiced the young girl for around £400 which she duly paid out of shock. The artist never mentioned a charge and they feel because Jenny is so young and lovely, that she was taken advantage of.
When I heard this, it made me cross. I get sick and tired of people taking what they can from others, just because they might be a kind and lovely person. It’s wrong. I knew then and there I was going to create her my own donkey picture for free for her, Just to balance out the world.
This is now a Limited Edition Print. When you buy this proceeds of the sale will be donated to the Wonkey Donkey Charity. Buy Now To Donate
Visit Wonkey Donkey Facebook page to LIKE and Share to help raise awareness of the charity and to find out more so you can visit them too and their beautiful donkeys. The kids absolutely love it there.
To Donate directly: Bank Transfer – The Wonkey Donkey Visitors Centre. Sort Code: 40-45-11 Acc No: 32271575. For PayPal use firstname.lastname@example.org (use the family and friends option)
Make a Wonkey Donkey happy this Christmas, visit them for a cuddle!
What Do I BUY THEM this year? A Pet Portrait Gift Voucher is perfect as a last minute gift or really easy gift to send to friends and family worldwide. The fab way to surprise your friend or family member this Christmas.
This year a lovely bunch of dog lovers across the land have meant sales of my Pet Portrait service has grown rapidly. With so many satisfied customers, this voucher is the reason why the NEW Pet Portrait Gift Voucher has arrived specifically in time for your Christmas 2019.
The amazing dog owners of the UK really do love their pets, and I love creating fantastic artwork of them for you in my charming and funny style.
Dog owners like you are thoughtful, kind and loving. When it comes to Pet Portraits you love to include their quirky habits and personalities. I will completely personalise an original one of a kind painting, for them of their own beautiful dogs.
With an original you can choose who’s in it, where they are, what they’re doing and more. It’s what makes them unique. I ask my customers for a few photographs then decide which way I might create each Pet Portrait. Some may be in watercolour paints like the two above. Some might be in Oil Pastels, like these below.
This article is a little look into how I develop a piece of artwork. From a simple sketch to a finished piece. I guess it all starts with an image in my head, or an idea from something someone might say and ‘Real Friends Whatever The Weather’ was an idea I had about our friends standing by us, whatever the situation.
In the two pencil sketches above you can see the first form is me trying to decide what Mavis’ body might move like when she is stretching to hang out the washing. I particularly like her rounded bottom cheeks, they just tickled me when I sketched them out. But without knowing what is underneath your clothing it is hard to make the clothing look like it fits.
The pencil sketch on the right hand side is the form developed in much more detail, down to the little mouse I always draw in every Mavis piece of artwork so the viewer can search it out. This is my small ode to ‘The Mouseman of Kilburn’. An amazing British furniture maker who always added a mouse to his work. I remember growing up in a little village in Yorkshire, called Aberford. And the church gates had a little mouse on them. I used to be fascinated by it and as I got older and wiser, became aware of its history and significance.
Anyway back to our Mavis…
Once the sketch is finished on my thin layout paper, I then transfer the image onto watercolour paper using a lightbox. Lightboxes are awesome and soooo simple. Its just a box that illuminates and you lay your layout paper over the top of it, and then place your watercolour paper over that to draw things through. That way you don’t waste expensive watercolour paper rubbing out a thousand times. That’s a tip I got from one of my illustrator heroes Sir Quentin Blake, from a little video he did on the web, not from when I was having afternoon tea with him or anything….which would be very awesome indeed!
Finally I build up the colours. With Mavis I have tried to stick to a similar colour palette for every piece. This is so they tie together visually and may encourage a customer to buy the pictures as a pair or a set of matching four. This was a tip from a lovely lady called Lesley I work with in Pomfret Art Gallery. Lesley is very clever and a talented seamstress.
I now make sure I write down the colour palettes for work I create as a collection as I can guarantee you will not remember them after one sleep. That’s a tip I learnt from me, after I slept and forgot! Doh!
I hope you have enjoyed this Sketch Book Article…you can subscribe to receive future articles too.
Let’s get started, with the latest Pet Portrait just finished and handed over.
My lovely customer (who I’d never met before) came to my house last night to collect the Pet Portrait I had created for her…she got a bit teary, she shared her beautiful story, we celebrated her tender relationship with her Staffy who has now passed away and she hugged me. You can view her Staffy Beside The Seaside here.
It’s OK, I’m good with hugging strangers, it tends to happen a lot. Which made me think about thePet Portraits I create a little bit more. You can see more Pet Portraits Here
Drawing dogs is great fun, when you’re a dog person you cannot walk past a dog without falling in love immediately. You know the feeling. (Love at first sight). It’s their friendly, jolly nature, which spills over and grabs a dog persons heart, which balloons with love. It’s those eyes, the soft chutchy wutchy faces and wet noses. You can see more Dogs here. This is what I enjoy celebrating with you all. That love and friendship we have with our pets can be found in the Pet Portrait service.
Pet Portraits are personal, it takes time for me to create one; lot’s of sketching and asking questions. Photos and messages zip through the internet as I get to know your pets. Finding out what their favourite toys are, what their personality’s like, working hard so it works for you. It can be a real honour to give a gift that will make someone cry (in a good way) as they celebrate their friendship and love for family through art too.