I was asked to paint a portrait commission of a very special Rhodesian ridgeback I met last year called Cairo – based all the way in South Africa. I don’t draw animals often, but I was delighted to take on the challenge.
With a reference photo at hand, I first drew the basic outline and features using a light pencil. Using watercolours, I painted the face, then moved outwards, building up different shades of brown as I went along. Some parts (like the ears and body) required folds, so I painted in some black shading first followed by the brown/orange shades.
I really wanted Cairo to stand out, so I added a black background. I also added in some white paint for certain features to make him pop even more.
I’m looking forward to sending a copy of the portrait commission to South Africa, and getting back to landscapes. Let me know what you think!