My friend Alison Kent (who is also my second cousin) commissioned me to produce this painting as a gift for her husband on the occasion of their marriage. She chose all the elements of the painting and sent me many of the items that are in this painting. It was one of those projects that one can really be absorbed in, and I loved doing this painting, even though I worried it was so small and would be difficult to include everything she wanted in it.
One item she specified was a Labrador Retriever. I couldn't imagine how this was going to be accomplished, but only a week later I spotted this dog figurine in a gift shop in Tarpon Springs. When I asked about their dog she laughed and said it was a “virtual dog”…the only way to have a pet. A virtual dog requires no walking, food, care or vets, but one can have a really virtual relationship with such a pet!
Alison and Allan live in California, in Davis, where the University of California has a campus, and their lives revolve around some very interesting pursuits, including drawing and calligraphy, bird watching, vegetable growing, and making soup from their garden harvests. Challah bread and having a tandem bike (seen outside the window) which are unusual activities for most of us, but these two thrive on the unusual! This painting is about their lives, their interests, the way they met and how they live their lives. I don’t get to do paintings like this very often and because it is about them it is very special to me.