Murf – Small Mixed Breed in Pastel Painting

by Lesley on September 19, 2014



My latest pastel is of a sweet female mixed breed named Murf.  This pastel portrait is from one generous friend to another.  Murf’s owner has already commissioned two portraits from me to give a gifts to loved ones.  She herself is now going to be given a surprise gift of her beloved Murf who recently passed away at 13 years of natural causes.  A little background on Murf is that she wandered onto the property as a puppy 13 years ago and Tracy, her owner,  kept her ever since. The photo of Murf that I used to reference was taken on Tracy’s wedding day.  I think Murf was in the wedding and couldn’t have looked more pleased about it!  I loved the sparkly eyes and happy expression!  Dana, who commissioned the piece,  allowed me to choose the medium used and I felt that the intense color to represent Murf’s happy face was the way to go.  The size is 8″x10″ with out frame.



Argos – Greyhound

by Lesley on August 8, 2014



My most recent oil painting is of this beautiful, stately Greyhound, Argos.  This guy was rescued by Cesar Millan and brought back to the United States.  I met Argos when I was at Cesar’s Dog Psychology Center several years ago.  Argos was timid, but had a lovely personality.  I was able to take a few photos of him and recently completed this profile portrait. This is a 12″x 9″ oil on a canvas board, and I had some fun with color.   I have another shot of Argo with a happy smile and will be working on that portrait soon.  He is the second greyhound I’ve done.  My first was a white greyhound resting in a sunny spot in his home, titled “Contented Greyhound” shown below.

Contented Greyhound

Contented Greyhound






Lucy and Sophie -Two Boxer Girls

by Lesley on August 3, 2014


Lucy "2005"

Lucy “2005”

Sophie  "2011"

Sophie “2011”









These two beautiful girls were lucky to have wonderful owners who were sure the dogs had lots of love and daily walks.  It was on one of these walks that I met Barbara, their owner.  Several years ago, she first had Lucy.  Lucy was a very sweet boxer with both humans and dogs.  Sadly Lucy passed away at mid age from cancer.  Sophie was her predecessor with the reverse brindle coat.  Another sweetie.  I do believe the owner rubbed off on them with her very personable personality!  Barbara contacted me recently to update me that she recently lost Sophie after a walk in the woods.  It was sudden and unexpected.  I am glad to have known both dogs and had the opportunity to create portraits of both.  She assures me that there will be another boxer in the future .


Cattle Dog - Sadie Marie

Cattle Dog – Sadie Marie

Lily’s Legacy is a non-profit organization that helps senior large breed dogs find loving homes.   I decided to visit them this week and see their organization first hand.   I was greeted by Alice, the founder, and by 6 large and lovely dogs swirling around my legs all interested in greeting the new person.  I loved it!    There were also several volunteers busy preparing newsletters and for the bi-monthly visit to Pet Food Express.  They were all waiting for the arrival of people interested in adopting a 6 year old German shepherd.  While we were waiting, Alice and I chatted, and I was able to ask lots of questions about Lily’s Legacy.  I was very impressed with their efforts and am so happy to help with my art.  I’ll be donating a portrait of one of the dogs and donating a percentage of every commissioned portrait, a total of up to $1000.   For more information on Lily’s Legacy , please see their home page


Kami and Kimber – Rottweiler Rescues

by Lesley on July 8, 2014

Kami and Kimber

Kami and Kimber

These two lovely girls were originally rescued from two separate locations.  Kami, on left is currently 10 years old.  She was found (age 3 years old) with several other animals in a home in Idaho where the original owner had passed away.   One of the dogs managed to escape the home and a neighbor realized something was wrong as the dog would not stop barking at him.   The animals had managed to survive three days in the house before it was discovered that the owner had passed away.   Luckily, the owner had left a lot of water bowls around and bags of dog and cat food open and accessible.   Her sister, Kimber, a five year old currently,  was rescued at 10 months old from the Napa, California shelter in hopes for a companion dog for Kami.  Both dogs are much loved and live with a couple in Santa Rosa.  A special wedding anniversary is coming in August and one of their (now current) owners has commissioned this pastel of their two much loved dogs.  The original photos where separate in time and place.  I needed to create a portrait that would make it appear as though the dogs were standing together.  We also wanted to give Kami a more youthful look that she had for most of her life.  Being 10, currently she has gone a bit gray around the muzzle.  Ah … the magic of art!!   The pastel is 10 1/2″ x 16″

Kami and Kimber Framed and ready for the anniversary gift.

Kami and Kimber framed and ready for the anniversary gift.


Bandit and Star – Pomeranian Heros

July 1, 2014

Both Bandit and Star volunteer their “cuteness” to an organization called Paws As Loving Support.   This is an organization where dogs are visiting facilities to help people in a variety  of ways .    Bandit and Star visit  Sonoma County libraries, schools,  senior centers, hospitals and assisted living homes to help brighten the lives of […]

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Coco Chanel – An Elegant Poodle

June 10, 2014

I had the pleasure of creating two portraits of Coco for her owner.  Sometimes it is difficult to make a decision as to which photo to work from to create a portrait.  Coco’s owner had a great memory of Coco at Dillon Beach on a rare sunny day.  She also had a gorgeous profile of […]

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Hunter After the Swim

May 25, 2014

English Golden Retriever Hunter was sleeping off a very fun day at the Russian River.  He spent the day swimming and rooting along the waters edge looking for any critters and of course chasing sticks and tennis balls that were tossed into the water. The particular part of the river didn’t have much current and […]

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Sarah – Fun in the Woods!

May 12, 2014

Sarah is a border collie cross and is illustrated here having a blast being a dog exploring in the woods.  Her owner loves the picture because clearly Sarah is having a great time.  Tongue curling out with a spark in her eye.  She even has a little mud on her nose and tongue as she […]

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Jake – Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Dog

April 5, 2014

This charming guy lives in the east bay with his owners.   Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retrievers are medium sized dogs with water repellent, double, medium length coats.  The kind of coat that is perfect for being near water where the action is.  Their coats have shades of red and orange with light feathering.   Jake’s owner […]

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