Portrait of Maya = The challenges of foreshortening + Red Wing Mall

On Saturday, I was part of a craft bazaar at the Redwing Pottery Center. It was a fun day and I met some really sweet crafters. The organizer, Ronnie is a very forward-looking person who wants to encourage The Redwing Pottery center to give crafters a local place to sell their merchandise.

http://www.rwpotteryplace.com/ Retrieved February 18, 2015

There is a candy shop, a Godfather’s Pizza, several really nice antique shops and a potter. Well, I had to stop by the candy shop, Tickle Yer Fancy which is owned by Susan Jasko. They sell Abdallah’s Candy. It was Valentines Day! The woman behind the counter asked me what brought me to the center. “I am here for the bazaar to promote my pet portraits and sell the cards I make.”

In that moment, a connection was made. Susan explained that she really wanted a portrait of her Labrador retriever that she had taken in to her home. A dear friend had suddenly passed away and the lovely four-year old dog was sadly left with out her person. The portrait was a gift for the mother of the friend who died, who loved and missed the dog.

Maya is a large, chocolate Lab and a sweetheart dog. I took photographs of a very wiggly, friendly Maya. Most of the photos had the problem of foreshortening making the dear Maya’s nose look gigantic. Fun for laughs, she was staring at the carrot I was holding over my head! (It’s all about food!)

Maya foreshortened view © CKatt 2-18-15

Maya foreshortened view © CKatt 2-18-15

At the last minute, I took a couple of shots with Susan holding her for me. And snagged a better view. (Phew.)

Making art and cooking have some similarities of process. As time and my research into cooking have taught me it’s the quality of the materials (foods) and the skill of the artist/cook that makes the difference. Preparation and good tools are important to any plan. This brings to mind, when Zen Master Dogen wrote “Instructions to the Cook”, a guide on the duties and responsibility of the head cook in the kitchen, he was giving guidelines not only for the cook but also for life. He recognized the essential nature of preparing food was taking care of one’s life. It could be done thoughtfully.

Instructions To The Cook


by Eihei Dogen zenji

translated by Anzan Hoshin roshi

and Yasuda Joshu Dainen roshi

In the meantime, I am shifting my focus to making art again. Here is the first phase of Maya’s portrait.

The progressed beginning view emerges, after deciding what paper, pencil colors, and lighting to use this is the first phase of drawing.  To start, deciding the layout and the building of color layers for the next stage is essential.

First Stage of pencil portrait of Maya © Ckatt 2-18-15

First Stage of pencil portrait of Maya © Ckatt 2-18-15


P1030986.JPG copy

2nd stage of Portrait of Maya ~ © CKatt 2015


Second progression bringing the colors into balance.  Details start to emerge.

To be continued…

http://www.abdallahcandies.com/ Retrieved February 18, 2015.

About kunstkitchen

Visual artist and writer hunting words, languages, visions, and insight in my kitchen - connecting Art (Kunst) and culture and slow food cooking. Credits: Do not own a microwave oven and never have. Do not own a food processor. Chopped veggies in a Zen monastery for a weekend. (Seriously) Classically trained artist. Paint and draw with traditional materials. Live in the Northland where it's six months of winter. Appreciate the little things in life. Sharing food and art experiences and the lessons that my talented and generous friends have given me.
This entry was posted in Art and Architecture, Slow food and art in the kitchen and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

5 Responses to Portrait of Maya = The challenges of foreshortening + Red Wing Mall

  1. NorCal Zen says:

    That is beautiful, the story and how you captured her beauty.

  2. Why do labs pose like that – our yellow lab did the same thing almost every time I tried to get a close up of her. Beautiful drawings – you sure have a lot of talent 🙂

  3. Sabina says:

    This story is so touching. It captures a lot of things I value so much in you.

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