Friday, January 16, 2015

New Jack Russell Art

© rebecca collins /

This adorable Jack Russell had a lovely original photograph to work from. This is a rush project for a new client.

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Pet Portrait Sale Valentine Deal

© rebecca collins /
It is time to think about Valentine's Day
... you can save 50% on either a small 12 x 12 or a large 24 x 24 sized custom pet portrait. This is a non-proofing deal ... that means if you let me loose with my creativity I will do my very best unrestricted work for you. It is wonderful deal if you have worked with us before and you know and trust the quality of work that I do.  Click this link to order in time for Valentine's Day!

Monday, January 12, 2015

Mosaic Monday / Switch Plates!

Hey guys, my new website is up and running. You can still find out what I am doing with mosaics here with my Mosaic Monday posts, however if you want the full scoop please do check out

Last weekend I played with some favorite pals and created mosaic switch plates!  These were fast and fun and I want to make more now.

Wednesday, January 07, 2015

Studio Sneak Peek

The construction at the house is coming along great. I am starting to get really excited about my new studio. During the holiday months of November and December I did not even have time to worry about when the project would be completed. Now that work is slowing down here at Art Paw I am super impatient and ready for the building to be done.  I suppose I could use the next couple of months to purge  my belongings and declutter our lives a wee bit before we get to move into the new space.  Below is a video tour of the studio in progress....

Monday, January 05, 2015

Mosaic Monday/ 52 Mosaics!

"Robot #1811
2.5 x 3.5
© rebecca collins
available for purchase

-----  New year and new Mosaic goals  ----
Inspired by both mosaic artist Margo Anton  and the painting a day artists I have decided to try and do one small scale mosaic per week this year. Margo tackled one per day for an entire year, and while I would love to try and devote time every single day to mosaic making, I know I can not make that happen, but one small mosaic per week seems very doable.

How I will play .....
I will be creating mosaics that range in size from 2.5 x 3.5 inches on up to 6 x 6 inches. I will be experimenting with both abstract and figurative subjects. I will be starting a blog just for this experiment and will go into detail on that blog about the work and what it opens up for me. I will also be making these works available for sale in my Snobby Robot Big Cartel Shop and over on Etsy.  Next week I will share a link to the new blog once I launch it.

Doing the Math ....
I always tell young and emerging artists that think they want to make a living doing art full time that the 1st step is to just do the math.  I did that with Art Paw when I decided I wanted to make a real income with pet portraiture. I looked at what my husband was bringing in each month and decided I wanted to match it and so I figured out just how many pet portraits that would take. That was way back in 1998. Five years later in 2003 I was starting to realize my financial goals.  What does it mean for me to now "do the math with fine art mosaics"? Well I have no fantasy or desire to make a full time living with my part time passion .... not just yet anyway. I do however want to continue to share my mosaic work by placing it in collector homes and I do want to make a decent part time income with it.  So I have a financial goal and I am writing it on a scrap of paper and placing it in a red envelope and sticking it on my bulletin board.  I will let you guys know next year at this time if I make it. Wish me Luck!

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Pet Portraits Are Shipping!

Evelyn is here today and we are shipping out all of November's approved orders. We are caught up with all orders that were placed by posted deadlines and now I am tackling new orders that have come in this month.  I am still accepting orders this month and promising proofing and even delivery in most cases. 

Sunday the 14th will be the very last day to place an order for a holiday delivery... rush fees will apply.  The best way to order is on-line.

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Happy Thanksgiving!

I have so much to be thankful for, I have my health, a warm home, a terrific extended family and many many friends.  As I sit here at my desk on the evening before Thanksgiving, waiting for Dan to get home from work I realize I am most thankful to be loved by a man that has always loved art and animals as much as I do. That is really no small thing, no small thing at all.  I love my husband and our 4-legged family.  We are so fortunate in so many ways.

I threw together a small video of my guy and a few of the animals he has loved over the years. I know he will be embarrassed by it, but I don't care.  Nobody is reading this blog the evening before Thanksgiving anyway. If you are reading this then I do wish you all a terrific Holiday!

Art Paw will be closed tomorrow, but I will be back at my desk on Friday working on holiday portraits.

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Sending Images At Full Resolution

It is that time of year again, the holidays are upon us and that means I will often be working with whatever pics people can get their hands on. That usually means compressed low resolution images sent from a friend of a friend or downloaded right off of facebook.  It also  means celebrating pets that have passed on using whatever photos are available. I always do my best to create something wonderful with whatever images people can send. If something just will not work I will tell my clients that. When I can I will encourage folks to send again and try different menu options.

What Clients Need to know about sending phone pics:

Texting your image to my e-mail is going to auto-crunch your image and reduce the file size.  Try to use an actual e-mail ap to send your image to me.

• The auto send or share feature on most phones sends low resolution pics for speed.

Most phones these days take great high resolution images.

There is a way to send at full resolution and a google search for "send full resolution images from my: insert name-brand phone ", will yield a plethora of tutorials.

• There is no way to auto fix a low resolution image, it will pixelate like crazy when enlarged. Using the smudge tool a good artist can smooth out the jagged pixelation that occurs. It is time consuming, and requires smoothing and smudging every single pixel. 

Today I am posting a Video tutorial I found on-line that may help iphone users send us their images at full resolution. This fellow walks you through it with a lovely British accent.


What You Need to think about as a Digital Artist:
I always tell my Photoshop students that you learn ten times as much trying to create something from low res. poor quality images than you do by working with stunning photos at full resolution. Any hack can take a stunning high resolution photograph and make it even prettier, the challenge is working with lower quality images. With that said I too prefer a minimum of 500KB and I love it when I can get my hands on an image that is at least 1mb.

Tips For Other Digital Artists:
• If you plan to stick to your image size requirements when working with clients plan to do half the pet portrait volume you could be doing.
• Always give help and tips when trying to get good images from your clients, but be prepared if they can not follow through.
• Know that sometimes all a client will have is a photo that was e-mailed from a pal at low resolution and asking their loved one to jump through hoops for the original image at actual size might just spoil the gift giving surprise.
• Your clients are not dumb, they are often very busy professionals and probably have not ever needed a full resolution image before. Many people are on their 3rd or 4rth phones and you never know, they may have a brand new phone that they are still learning about.
• Respect your client's time and know that at the end of the day your flexibility and skill at working with all types of images will pay off in the amount you will learn about Photoshop and in your ability to build great relationships with your clients.

Thursday, November 06, 2014

Holiday Pet Portrait Deadline

It is that time of year again.   Time to post my holiday deadlines.

Order by 11/18 .... and get my very best unhurried creative work with a guaranteed delivery by Christmas.

Ordering now means that your pet will get the time they deserve and I will even have an extra pad of time so I can make a few color changes if they are needed.