It always starts with an inspiring photo, then a sketch.

Bichon Frise rouch sketch

Bichon Frise rouch sketch

Bichon Frise portrait, Stephanie Macera

Bichon Frise, Acrylic in progress

My favorite brush for this type of work is the Round Number 4 by Master’s Touch.

I use several brushes to create a painting, but finishing and details for hair, ears and eyes – this is my brush of choice.

Bichon Frise, pink

Bichon Frise, pink

Pups that have light fur never show up and shine the way I hoped for without a darker, contrasting background.

I am always tempted to try a light color, as I have many friends with an aversion to darker tones.

But the contrast is what it takes to make it pop.

Bichon Frise on canvas, Stephanie Macera

Bichon Frise 2″ x 2″, Stephanie Macera

The darker background always wins.

I used:

  • grey colored pencil over the paint to detail beard and eyes,
  • black ink pen (fine point) for nose and eyes, and a
  • white gel pen for stray hairs and whiskers.

Mine  is not a one product/medium approach.

I respect those that can do such work in one medium, but I am a gal of many tools!