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Jake was truly “one” man’s best friend. He is missed.

I am not a pastelist but took a couple classes in pastels a few years back. I manage to use them more as a drawing medium than these beautiful layered paintings I see accomplished artists create.    For class, we were instructed to watercolor a background on coldpress illustration board and create our pastel on that. This was mine.


  1. Aw he’s lovely Leslie! He looks very alert and intelligent 🙂 You do very well with pastels Leslie! love using them myself (the soft ones not the oil – can’t get into those at all). Good work indeed!

    • Thank-you, Lynda. I have trouble with the mess and the idea that it topples off the page and all that. 🙂 It always feels like I spend half the time creating and the other half getting all the mess cleaned up.

  2. Hi Leslie, Jake clearly was a loyal, loving pet with beautiful brown eyes.

    I like how you handled the pastels for a “non-pastelist”. I really like the blue shadow on the right side of him as well as the pink on his ears.

    I tried pastels a few times, but they were very messy with chalk dust flying everywhere. I eventually ended up with something I really liked. And then ruined it with spray fixative. The colors changes and the whole thing got very dark. I scurried my butt right back to watercolor.

    • Thank-you, Carol! At least we have tried it. The same thing happens when I fix them. I want to make sure I’m not going to let a bit drop off and voila! doesn’t look like the same pastel. I have heard that many many pastelists don’t fix their work. Me too. 🙂 I ran back to watercolors.

  3. its great.
    The dog has a really keen expression

  4. Beautiful eyes–he looks like such a sweetie. You’ve done a great job. I’m waiting for him to beg for some of my toast–he looks that real.

    And yes, you do lose a lot of pigment working with pastels. A good proportion always seems to end up on my skin, too, but I like the liquid glove products. The thing I love about pastels is their brightness. They do make a mess, tho. 😉

    • Thank-you for such a wonderful comment! I just found your art site and need to peruse it.
      Is the pigment in pastels the purest color or pigment there is? Do you know? I think I read that somewhere.

      • That’s what I’ve been told. I suppose it depends on who made them. And also they’re brighter if you don’t rub or blend them much. They kind of sparkle, and if you rub them it flattens them down so they become duller. I think that’s cool, but it emphasizes their delicacy for sure.

      • Thank-you for the reply to my questions about this medium. Should I be calling you Cindy or Jenny? I switched your tag URL over to your pottery and art site so viewers can access you there and that site says Jenny? LOL 🙂 Is Jenny Gulch a town?

  5. I love him! He has this dutiful attentive look in the drawing – “can I help you with this food?!” or “is this food for me?! Thanks!!” What a great expression you rendered! Beautifully done!

    I am extremely curious about pastels, but haven’t ventured this direction due to the mess and dust they generate. Having contrived a work room out of our dining room and having an open floor space here make some media off limits…

    • I am extremely curious about them, myself, but I spend so much time worrying about the mess and it falling off the paper. Silly, really, as it is such a beautiful medium. I love my watercolors and like to dabble in colored pencil and graphite, I decided to stick with them for the time being. Thank-you for your nice comment. I keep clicking on your site to view the next beautiful “Alex” creation!:)

  6. I love the sparkle and clean work – you seem to try many new things. S

    • Thank-you, Stephen. Maybe clean is the key to why I chose watercolor, but I sure know how to muddy those up once in awhile. 🙂

  7. Awwwwwwww……. He was also one woman’s best friend. You know I love it, looks just like him, so glad you did this for Tom because I benefit.

    • Thanks, Nancy. I know he loved you too. 🙂 Just thought I’d honor Tom and his buddy.

  8. Just beautiful I really love your art work and artistic style 🙂

  9. For not being a pastelist this looks too good! I envy you. The shadows and the “wrinkles” on his neck is very good, I like that. But I wish you would have “finished” him, so that he could run off to play.. Why did you choose to do as you did?

    • Thank-you, Camilla. I don’t know why I just didn’t finish that corner. I think I just saw it would be a tight fit and decided it might look better if I just faded the drawing out there and let the viewer fill in the rest.

  10. Jake looks like one smart, sturdy, sweet hunka dog. Some Ridgeback maybe?
    You captured his expression so well. It’s not that I know HIS particular expression, but I know that canine look…oh so well.

    • Thank-you, Bonnie. Jake was a Rhodesian Ridgeback and huge! Your canine companions are gorgeous!

  11. I love your animals, Leslie! Jake’s face is priceless!! I just wanna hug him! 😀

    As for pastels, I have the oilies and the softies, but they feel like big old logs in my hands. I bring them out from time to time, when I see some beautiful pastel art, but I still can’t get comfortable with them. I have so much respect for people who can master them.

    • Thanks, Beth! I, too, admire anyone who paints in pastel. Initially I took the classes because I was impressed with the work I’d seen locally and in books.

  12. Jake’s facial expression seems alert and very friendly. Warm tones and nice shading. Makes me want to get a dog.
    Enjoy the week, Leslie 🙂

    • Jake was a really cool dog and very smart. I suppose a lot of that had to do with his owner’s attention to him. I’m honored any of my drawings might inspire another to want a dog. Thank-you, Adam. 🙂

  13. He looks like a BIG SWEETIE to me. great expression in the eyes and crisp lines. Wonderful drawing!


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  15. this is beautiful, and i love the splash of blue, too!

    • :), for some reason I felt that blue had to be there! Thank-you for your comments and your visit, “Y”! Made my day a happy one!

  16. Jake is truly a beautiful canine. You really have special touch for animals. He looks so diligent and alert and so full of life. I have done a few pastel too but they are really too messy. Nice one Leslie.

    • Thank-you, Francis. I wonder if a number of watercolorists have chosen watercolor because of the ease of the clean-up? 🙂 I would do more pastel work if I did not have to deal with the mess.

  17. I’ve never been able to successfully use pastels. You’ve done this very well.

  18. He put the biggest smile on my face, he’s gorgeous, you did him beautifully. I think you can work in any medium successfully.

    • Thank-you, Paintedbrush! Your dog is pretty handsome, I think. Have you ever drawn or painted him?

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