This painting is of a Bernese Mountain Dog – Toby, a Golden Labrador – Tough, and a Blonde Golden labrador – Sammy.
The Bernese Mountain Dog is a Swiss Mountain Dog but the only variety to have long, silky hair. It’s a hardy dog and thrives in cold weather. Its intelligence, strength and agility makes it an ideal working dog, from pulling carts to herding cattle.
The Golden Labrador Retriever is a friendly, sociable dog. An intelligent animal, it is easy to train. It loves swimming and – of course – retrieving (they make good hunting dogs) as well as being good watch dogs.
The Blonde variety of the Golden Labrador naturally has all these admirable characteristics too.
All three dogs – the Bernese Mountain Dog and Golden and Blonde Golden Labradors – belong to the same owners, although Tough died over seven years ago, and Sammy is eight. Toby is much younger and is really the daughter’s dog. The owners wanted a portrait showing all three dogs together . This was a considerable challenge, albeit very enjoyable, given that the photos they sent me were not of the highest quality, neither did they show the whole of any dog. However, with some inspired guesswork, I managed a composition which I thought would work and this is the result.
The painting was commissioned as a surprise Christmas gift for the wife of the owner and it seems she was both delighted and suitably surprised.
Painted in acrylic on canvas panel.