Pina’s portrait was commissioned as a present for her owner’s big birthday. The client, the owner’s sister, wanted to give her brother a present that was a little different and very special. Pina is a little shih tzu cross dog and very much loved. The client asked me to remove Pina’s harness and water bowl from the photo. The reference image is lovely, there is a lot of detail and the lighting in the scene works very well. I wanted to capture the warmth in the painting. The portrait is 25 x 25 cm in size and painted with acrylics on stretched canvas.

small dog painting
‘Pina’ Shih Tzu Cross Dog Portrait, 25 x 25 cm acrylic on canvas
dog painting detail
The painting in detail

I started the portrait by sketching out the dog and trees with a watered down mix of burnt umber and yellow ochre. Once I was happy with the likeness, I started putting down the basic colours. I covered the entire canvas before moving onto adding any details. After the second coat of paint on the canvas, I started the final detailing on the dog’s head. I took some photographs of the painting in progress.

Hi again Ivana! My brother and his wife came over from England for the birthday celebrations last weekend and my brother was absolutely thrilled with his present of the portrait of their very much loved little dog, Pina.  When he opened the present the portrait was face-down and when he turned it over the look on his face was one of total delight!  He loves it and I could not have given him a better present to celebrate his ‘big’ birthday!  For a guy who has everything, this was the perfect present! I have attached a photo so you can see his happy face!! Thank you so much

Sally, Dublin

The client was very happy with the finished painting and emailed me after she presented it to her brother. He was delighted with the painting.

Happy Client