Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Black Rooster "Lookin' for Trouble", 18 of 30 Daily Paintings

Painting this rooster was a bit of a change for me, and I hope to do more of them in the future. As you can see in my website, most of my paintings are of dogs. But I do plan this year to branch out into other areas as well.

It was a fun painting, though, and I do look forward to doing more birds of every kind, not just farm fowl.  I do love my "job"!

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Basset Hound Pup Portrait

This is number 16 in my 30 day painting challenge!

This little guy is painted on an 8x10 stretched canvas, with 3/4" sides, painted the same blue as the background.  It's wired on the back and ready to hang, with or without a frame.  It's available for sale on my website,

The lovable Basset Hound, has a very positive reputation as being generally very calm, well behaved, gentle, and devoted companion dog. They are very fond of human interraction, and are known as being extremely well behaved with children, and have the intelligence to show extra care around them. They're a slow moving type of dog, with short, and stout legs. And as any hound, they rarely bark, and howl more often than not, but when they do bark, it is very deep, and has an almost musical tone to it.
Basset Hounds are also very skilled at doing tricks, and will quickly learn various kinds of them, provided that they get a treat, of course!

Monday, March 19, 2012

Australian Shepherd, tricolored, No. 15 of 30 Daily Paintings

Okay, I'm halfway in doing my 30 Daily Paintings; and although I'm painting daily (really hard!) I'm producing a little more slowly than I had anticipated.  The chief reason for this is that I'm doing some paintings on much larger canvases, and I just can't put down that much paint in one day when I'm doing, say, a 16x20" canvas, as in this case.

This Aussie was one I think I mentioned earlier that had been submitted to me by a customer/friend.  I'm quite happy with it, and I hope he likes it, too.  

As with all my paintings, the original and prints are available on my website.

By Mark:  The Australian Shepherd, also known as Aussie, is a robustly built, loyal dog with a puppy temperament that lasts into their adult years. They make for very effective watch dogs, as they tend to bark noisily at individuals or critters that are not normally in the area.

They have a potential health hazard in the merle coloration gene, since the same gene carries a natural blindness/deafness factor, which is a risk of ‘awakening’ in the dogs later years. Also, since the Aussie is a natural bob-tail breed, if they are bred with another natural bob-tail, the puppies have a very high chance of developing crippling spinal defects. But as any gene carried risk, the risk is not serious or high enough to make the breed unfit in any case. An Aussie is in general a fantastic, friendly, and playful dog that requires lots of activity and positive attention.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Holstein Cow on Blue, No. 14 of 30 Daily Paintings

The following paragraph is by my sweet son-in-law, Mark, who is helping me out a bit with my online work so I can spend more time painting!

"This is a painting of a Holstein Cow, which originated in the Netherlands. It is today the most efficient dairy producing animal in the world, and in my opinion, also one of the cutest!
Holsteins have been known to be all black, all white, a mix of the two, or even red and white, which is slightly less common than the traditional black and white mix. Their reason for import to the US was due to disease spreading amongst the cattle, and 8800 Holstein cows were imported to the new world, where they, obviously, flourished to become the most efficient species of dairy cows currently in existence."

I think he did a great job - and he's helping me immensely!  Mark, if you read this, thanks so much!

The painting is a small one, 8x10" on stretched canvas, with 3/4" sides, painted blue.  The back is wired, so the painting is ready to hang, either framed or unframed.  This cow is another one I got sketches and photos of on my fairly recent trip to the dairy farms around Tillamook, Oregon, on the Pacific Coast -- well, a bit inland, I guess, but you can certainly feel the sea air around there.  It's available for sale on my website, and here's the link for it - and other farm animal paintings I've done:

I'm now working on a larger painting, which is going to take at least three days to finish.  I'm really enjoying it so far.  It's an Australian shepherd, a tricolor, sent to me by a dog-lover.  He has several Aussies and I'm going to try to paint all of them over time.  I'll post the painting in just a few more days.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

American Goldfinch with teasels, No. 13 of 30 Daily Painting

This is an American Goldfinch painting I did.  It's an acrylic painting on 8x10x3/4" stretched canvas, with the sides painted the same color as the background.  It's wired on the back and is ready to hang either framed or unframed, as you choose.

The American male goldfinch is characteristically black and yellow; the female is beautiful but not nearly as bright as the male. It is well known in Iowa, Washington, and New Jersey, where it is the state bird in all three states.  It is also well known in Oregon, where it lives all year round.  American goldfinches are very welcome and common at bird-feeders, where they primarily eat sunflower and nyjer seeds. They are also very fond of teasel seeds, as the painting shows.

Hope you like this painting.  It was a pleasure to paint.  Each day now, I feel that I am becoming a better painter.  Seventeen paintings to go.

Friday, March 9, 2012

American Bulldog, No. 12 in my 30 Daily Paintings

American Bulldog Painting by Dottie Dracos
With this painting, I decided to work in a larger format.  While I considered it to be one of my 30-day Daily Paintings, it was actually painted over about a three-day period.  The canvas size is 16x20x3/4", and as are all of my daily paintings so far at least, it is painted with acrylic paints.

I love the expression on the face of this big bully dog.  It reflects, in my opinion, the truly loving nature of these sometimes massive animals.  I can see the gentleness within all that power, and it is the gentleness that I know so well, having had a few of the "bully dogs" myself.  Yes, they're a bit pushy sometimes, and yes, they can be fierce in the wrong circumstances, so they should always be supervised.  But a big, big yes, they are sweet, gentle souls with hearts of gold.

I had one precious bully dog, a pit bull that we adopted as a small puppy.  When I would come back from errands, he would greet me with a huge smile, swinging his lash of a tail so wildly that it snaked his whole body into one big waving, happy greeting.  His tail was so muscular that it actually hurt when he would swing it against my legs.  And, the pushy part, he would try to guide me into where he wanted me to go by pushing against my legs as he was wagging wildly.  Yes, sometimes annoying, but at the same time, so sweet, too.  He just needed a bit firmer voice than my other dogs did to keep him from trying to take over the situation.  But other than one time when he was goaded on by another dog into chasing a cat, he never exhibited a moment of aggressiveness or meanness.  Unfortunately, he lived only five years due to an accidental kicking by a horse.  He was such a sweetheart, as have my other bully-type dogs always been.  It's all in the upbringing.

Anyway, to get back off my tangent, the original painting - and of course, prints - is available at my website,  I feel I am finally starting to see some benefits to my self-enforced daily painting adventure.  Hope it continues.  With me, one never knows . . .

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Oregon Junco Bird Art Painting, Daily Painting No. 10

Okay, I'm moving along at a better pace now.  This is my tenth painting, a painting of a little male Oregon junco, a subspecies of the dark-eyed junco, a species of the American sparrow.  They are prevalent in my home state of Oregon, and over a large part of the Northwest as well.  As I've been trying to do paintings in and about Oregon, I've been researching some of the wildbirds commonly seen here.  This little guy -- and his friends -- plays outside my house in some bare bushes.  They are amazingly tiny and so much fun to watch!

The original painting is available on my website,  It's an acrylic painting on an 8x10x3/4" canvas, with the sides painted the same color as the background.  It's wired to hang immediately, either with or without a frame.

I have twenty paintings to go in my Daily Painting self-challenge, and I do feel that I'm finally starting to benefit greatly from my challenge.  One of the things I've most learned about is using my palette more wisely.  In the past, I included way too many colors of paint straight out of the tubes instead of mixing my own colors.  With this bird, I had a palette of three colors:  phthalocyanine blue (cyan blue), magenta, Naples yellow, plus white.  So I had a lot of mixing to do, but I feel I am really getting to know the properties of each color I use now.  It's amazing to me how many wonderful colors, including a dark purplish black, that I can create with just these three colors.

Monday, March 5, 2012

Border Collie on Red No. 8 in my Daily Paintings

This is another of my daily paintings that I just finished. It's a black-and-white border collie, acrylic on watercolor paper, with a white border for framing.

I've fallen a few days behind now because I've been working on some larger paintings. Yes, I know I should stick to smaller ones when I'm doing daily paintings -- but I'm being a bit looser with the term since I'm making my own rules.  I am painting daily, and I'm working harder than I ever have with painting, so I don't feel so bad about it.  I'll still do thirty, but it may take me a few days longer than I had anticipated.

Anyway, this the 8th one, 22 to go.

American Eskimo on Light Blue, No. 9 of my 30 Daily Paintings

This is an acrylic painting on an 8x10x3/4" canvas, sides painted light blue also, of an American Eskimo dog.  It's the ninth in my 30-day daily painting series and is for sale for $50 at my website,

Okay, back to my easel now.  I have a large one coming either tomorrow or the next day, a beautiful either pit bull or American bulldog.