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Meet “Zala” – a fully custom mixed media Pet Portrait commission! I combined paint, ink and graphite in an expressive & minimalist style, and a monochromatic palette, to create a unique & contemporary spin from my standard high detail Pet Portrait Series paintings.

When this client contacted me we chatted about what he was after, and coincidentally the style was quite similar to a sketch I had worked on recently (check it out here). He sent me some photos of his dog Zala, and wanted me to sketch her ‘essence’ vs a literal translation. So after completing some sketches, he selected the version I came up with of black contour lines, graphite detailing in certain areas, and finally a splash of grey and brown paint accents.

For the background he requested mostly white, with some brown around the edges. There is subtle texture detail also for visual interest up close. This beauty is painted on Russian Birch Panel (vs my usual canvas), as it’s a fantastic working surface for mixed media.

This style steps away from my usual calculated way of drawing, and into a freer zone. The goal was to simplify, and let the the lines tell a story. I love working on fully custom pieces such as this, because they push you out of your comfort zone and you always develop new techniques and skills while doing so.

This is my first mixed media Pet Portrait commission to date, and it’s been so much fun, I hope to expand on this style more in the future. This piece is also my largest Pet Portrait to date, at a whopping 30″x30″!!

All in all, my client & I are both happy with the final result, and I hope he enjoys his custom one-of-a-kind artwork for a long long time! 🙂

Ps – I’ve added “Zala” to my ‘Custom Art‘ tab, so feel free to check it out for more details & pictures of this piece.

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