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Betteles in art?

Ive recently been finding out about an interesting Americal artist who uses them to help him paint on the canvas. And yes, they are … ALIVE!!!!

Kutcher controls the direction and movement of his arthropods — such as hissing cockroaches  darkling beetles and grasshoppers — by their response to external lighting. The result is controlled and random movements, created in a co-authorship between the artist — with predetermined ideas about colour, form, shape and creative flexibility — and his living brushes!?!

see here for some more details!

Scientists at Imperial College, London, recently found that pugs in the UK are so inbred that although there are 10,000 of them, it is the equivalent of just 50 distinct individuals. Now I had to laugh when I heard this story, although sadly its actually very bad for the dogs.

Steve Jones, professor of genetics at University College London, said: “People are carrying out breeding which would be first of all entirely illegal in humans and secondly is absolutely insane from the point of view of the health of the animals.

“In some breeds they are paying a terrible price in genetic disease.”

To be honest, pugs are quite cute, as you can see from the photos below.

look into my eyes and tell me you love me!

look into my eyes and tell me you love me!

UK RSPCA chief vet Mark Evans was interviewed recently and he said-

He said: “The welfare and quality of life of many pedigree dogs is seriously compromised by established breeding practices for appearance, driven primarily by the rules and requirements of competitive dog showing and pedigree dog registration.”

As a trained veterinarian, yes I have to agree with him- overbreeding of pedigree dogs has serious health risks and so I prefer a mongrel any day, much healthier…….. but hey its up to you.

There should be more regulation of the pet trade however, I think this is becoming obvious worldwide.

Ok- for the fun side, here are some PUG GIFTS!!!!! for all the pug lovers out there.

First we have PUG mouse pads! click here to view

Then we have pug paintings from photos, go here to see a site which does pet pop art and other pet portrait paintings.

Ok, you can buy pug umbrellas, see here

My favourite has to be what we do below, PUG POP ART– this is 100% hand painted from a photo of your pug.

pug pop art

pug pop art

See the bottom for a wikipedia definition. But essentially, its a print. Nowadays its tended to mean a Fine Art print of a painting, onto a canvas- so the print looks like a painting.

Its a great piece of technology with some good uses- but I personally am not a big fan.

I only like hand-painted art, as I think Giclee is a bit of a cheat! But that’s only my opinion…. what’s yours? At Portrait Xpress artists, all the art is done 100% by hand. Sure, its copied from people’s photo’s (thats the only way that you can get a painting made for USD 100 and it enables someone in Alabama to paint someone’s portrait in  Yorkshire) but it’s still 100% hand painted.

What do you think of Giclee? is it good or bad? The useful thing about it is that Fine Art prints all can be printed to the same standard, which ensures easy quality control I guess.

Well, Wikipedia can tell you that Giclée (pronounced [ʒiːˈkleɪ] “zhee-clay” or /dʒiːˈkleɪ, from FrenchIPA: [ʒiˈkle]), is an invented name (i.e. a neologism) for the process of making fine art prints from a digitalink-jet printing. The word “giclée” is derived from the French language word “le gicleur” meaning “nozzle”, or more specifically “gicler” meaning “to squirt, spurt, or spray”[1]. It was coined by Jack Duganne, a printmaker working in the field, to represent any inkjet-based digital print used as fine art. The intent of that name was to distinguish commonly known industrial “Iris proofs” from the type of fine art prints artists were producing on those same types of printers. The name was originally applied to fine art prints created on Iris printers in a process invented in the early 1990s but has since come to mean any high quality ink-jet print and is often used in galleries and print shops to denote such prints.

Hello everyone! As you know, as well as having great fun running my bespoke artwork site www.portraitxpress.com, (selling paintings of pets and people copied by hand from your photos), Im also a veterinarian day to day ocassionally- this was what I spent 5 years at University in England training to become.

So, today I want to talk a bit about my work as a veterinarian. Lots of problems that pets get are because of silly things that their owners do, much like as in the world most of the problems are created by humans, fighting and killing each other and starting wars and so on and so forth.

Well, with pets its a similar story im afraid. In the wild, animals tend to eat certain foods, depending on what type of animals they are.

Carnivores like dogs tend to mainly eat meat (I guess a wild dog example could be something like a wolf or a jackal?). Anyway, they must eat meat, and scavenge for other things. Certainly they dont have a luxury diet.

Anyway, as pets, as well as eating dog food, lots of people like to give dogs treats also. One thing people give is rice (which I dont think wild dogs would eat much of?!!!!).

grrr! Im   WILD!!!!

grrr! Im WILD!!!!

Here is a painting of someone’s dog, just as a sideline!!

Okay, so eating Rice, NOT GOOD. Why?

Well, it makes your urine a bit alkaline and then this pre-disposes dogs to getting STONES in the bladder.

Obviously thats uncomfortable, and so then the dogs have a problem going to the toilet. Owch!!

So, as with all of life- practice balance in all things!!

Don’t give your pet too much HUMAN FOOD ie food for people, as otherwise by mistake you could give it a few medical problems.

Have a great day! Matt.

yes you, look at me!

yes you, look at me!

many people ask me why do paintings or sketches of people or pets and not just a photo?

well, photos are great and Im an avid photographer (okay when i have the time) but I think there is something more unique about a painting. Also, sure we can manipulate photos a lot nowadays on photoshop, but a painting is done by hand so every one is unique- you cant beat that as a gift or as a personal memory to keep.

So, Im keen on promoting artwork!

In an ideal world, Im a traditionalist, so the person or pet should sit in front of the artist and the portrait be done over a few days or weeks. BUT, who has this time anymore? so, I think portrait paintings from photos are justified, as long as they are 100% done by hand with no printing or any cheating involved.

To be honest, using a reputable artist or company, the client also has some fun-

they can help tell the artist in what style to do the painting, they get a great painting even if their own artistic skills are not great, and they can request changes to the painting before its finished.

They can change the background or the contents of the painting- its so flexible!

Here is the original photo.

watch out or I scratch the sofa!

watch out or I scratch the sofa!

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