Archive for March, 2012


The day is finally here.  Groundbreaking for the dog park at 9 a.m. at Eastham Park off of Luray Avenue in Front Royal.  Join us.

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Yesterday I discovered that an image that I had been given permission to paint in one of our kid’s classes was not the artist’s image at all.  It was not original to them.  Oh, they had painted it but had apparently copied another artist’s  original image.  Therefore it wasn’t their permission to give to the young artists to paint.  Instead of accepting their word I should have spent more time checking it.  I didn’t.  My fault.

As soon as you create something you have copyright to it.  You can’t copyright an idea but once you paint that idea, the copyright is yours.  In the digital age it is increasingly difficult to protect copyright.  There was a time you could ask someone for permission to paint from their image and they would either say yes or no.  Now you have to ask yourself, do you trust this source?  Is it their original image at all? Is the permission they are giving you really theirs to give?

I have apologized several times to the artist who created the original painting and have removed the image from my blog and destroyed the demo that I painted.  I’m not sure they cared how it happened.  They are just angry that it did, as they should be.  But now I have learned another valuable lesson about copyright.  Be extra sure you TRUST the source of the material if you are painting from someones image and not your own.   And in next week’s classes we will discuss copyright again.  It’s never to early to help students understand it.  And I will apologize to them as well.


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Spring Dogs

Spring Jed

This time of the year I take  loads of photos to use as reference for my paintings.  Most serious artists have tons of photos to  use throughout the year as they develop paintings. 

And I can’t help but take photos of my kids too.  It’s hard to get them to sit still usually, especially Lincoln.  But this time a bird was tweeting in the tree and he was transfixed.

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I love this photo of my friend Suzanne McMinn’s goat Nutmeg.  They were calling her Rotunda.  That’s just mean!  This photo was taken just a day or so before she had two of the cutest little goats you’ve ever seen.

I couldn’t resist painting her.

You can see more about Nutmeg and all of Suzanne’s other animals at www.chickensintheroad.com .

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Dorothy working on Fiona

Kaylee painting Frisky

Mara painting Max


I captured a photo of Kaylee and Dorothy with their finished pet portraits from Saturday’s Pet Portrait Workshop.  (See it below.)  Mara got away before I could get her finished photo.  I’ll try to get a photo of her with the finished Max to show you all.  They all turned out great!  You girls are terrific.  Thanks for making Saturday so much fun!!!

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Dogs Gone Wild!

I write a lot about Lincoln because he is usually misbehaving so I have more stories about his antics so I wanted to lead with Jed in this post.  He’s a handsome guy and so good.  He had fun at the cabin last weekend running and stretching and rolling in the grass.

Max came to visit so he chased Lincoln and gave him some really good exercise.



Max loves Lincoln and follows him everywhere.  They are so cute playing.

It worried me when Max chased him around the pond because Lincoln can’t swim….legs too short to hold up that long body.

Max wore himself out running and playing but he couldn’t give it up.  He would fall asleep with the ball still in his mouth.  So funny!


And this is what my boys looked like after Max and his mom left to go home.  Two tired pups!

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Today I want to brag about and show off a little of my adult student’s work.  I often share with you the kid’s art but here is some of what the adults are working on.

Dean just finished this adorable Bunny in the Basket.  He is doing a fabulous job on his painting often working on his own at home and bringing it in for critique.  Keep up the good work Dean!

And here is Shelly working on her version of the Cyprus at Pebble Beach.  Shelly’s work is always very good and she pushes herself to try new and more difficult paintings.  Good job Shelly!

Pat is working on her largest painting yet-a gift for her daughter.  The scale and detail are a challenge and Pat is going after it with gusto.  You go girl!

Jean working on her golfer painting.  We painted along on this one and she did a fabulous job!

(You can see Dean in the back of this photo so you can put a face with the first photo in this post.)

Keep up the good work everyone.

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This Saturday, March 24th, 10 a.m. – 1 p.m., we will have a Pet Portrait Painting Workshop for Kids (ages 7-13)  at the Blue Ridge Arts Council.  Each painter will paint from his own photo of his favorite pet.  For more information check out this page

To register contact kwalker@doubledogdesigns.com.

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This is Max Booe.

This is Max’s portrait.

This is Judi, Max’s mom after she received the gift of Max’s portrait from the friend who commissioned the painting.  She likes it.

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An interesting part of being a painter is the collection of reference photos that you accumulate.  We take pictures everywhere we go of just about everything you can imagine.  You never know when you will need it for painting.

I went to Monticello yesterday and took many lovely shots that someday may turn into paintings or parts of paintings.


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