Archives For pet


Mary Liz Ingram —  January 12, 2016 — Leave a comment

We have busy minds. We are always in the process of becoming. For better or worse, our thoughts, actions and choices move us forward, or maybe backward, along the line of history and personal quest. I frequently get caught up in the existential throes of being an artist, of trying to be the best person I can be for the time I have on earth.

One morning I was thinking about fear,

how to overcome it, how to lessen the fear around us. I realized that most cruelty, most fear comes from us, from humans. We humans, more than any other species, threaten each other – with hate, with guns, with war, with irresponsibility, with greed and robbery, with anger and disregard for human life. Recently two young boys that I count as nearly my own had a gun pointed at them while they were simply playing near their porch, and this in a safe neighborhood. There was no cause or prompting, just a quick move by a man with unknown motives. It causes fear. Fear that must be overcome daily.

May we live with more peace and regard for each other. May we treat each other with love and loyalty, as members of the human race, members of creation.

Peas, ink & markerI hope we can learn from the example that surrounds us, the peaceful cooperation found in nature. The trees, the soil, the birds, the animals work together to survive and thrive with beauty.

In my garden, I witness a microcosm that balances and cooperates to bear fruit. Insects, bacteria, nutrients, soil, water, sun, roots, leaves…it all works together to form food we can eat, beauty we can enjoy. And I get to be a caretaker, to guide and protect the process. May we do the same in our everyday lives, care for each other, guard the process of becoming.

At this point, I hear Mr. Potter from It’s a Wonderful Life,  waving dismissively, “Sentimental hogwash!” Maybe I’m laying it on a big too thick. To bring it a few steps down from mushiness, I hope we can be  more like our dogs. Our pets love us, even when we act like jerks, when we ignore them or forget to buy dog food. They are loyal and forgiving, and their love is constant. We are the ones who complicate things.

Here are a few furry friends that now have their portraits painted, a testament to their worth and value, and their loyalty to a fickle race.

Rest, 11x14 pastel on card

Rest, 11×14 pastel on card


Pet Portraits

Mary Liz Ingram —  October 21, 2015 — Leave a comment

A portrait is a wonderful way to create a lasting memory of your pet…any pet! Either in black & white or full color, I so enjoy creating a true-to-life painting to bring out the personality behind the photograph. With each detail captured, from the glint in the eye to the many hues in the fur, these portraits can be valued for generations. I’ve drawn everything from fish and dogs, to cows and chickens, to rabbits and cats.

Pet portraits make wonderful gifts…in order to ensure completion for Christmas, contact me today!

Pet Portrait Pricing:

8 x 10″: $175 ink or charcoal, $225 color pastel; add $90 for each additional subject

9 x 12″: $200 ink or charcoal, $260 color pastel; add $100 for each additional subject

11 x 14″: $250 ink or charcoal, $325 color pastel; add $125 for each additional subject

16 x 20″: $400 ink or charcoal, $465 color pastel; add $200 for each additional subject

18 x 24″: $550 ink or charcoal, $625 color pastel; add $275 for each additional subject

24 x 36″: $750 ink or charcoal, $850 color pastel; add $400 for each additional subject

Prices for other subjects and sizes available upon request.

Furry Friends

Mary Liz Ingram —  January 9, 2014 — Leave a comment

While I’m parading pet portraits, here’s one more I did as a Christmas commission. In this pastel, I put two friends together from separate photos, two beloved pets who passed away recently. I was touched to hear on Christmas day that the gift was treasured, thoughtfully given and happily received!


Mary Liz Ingram —  January 5, 2014 — 2 Comments

You look out into the night. You see two shining eyes and a big tongue. It’s Bear. Not A bear, but Bear, my grandfather’s very large, very sweet, very black, very loved Belgian Sheepdog.

I had the privilege to draw this pampered dog for my Paw Paw’s Christmas present, given by his family. Here’s how it turned out:

Belgian Sheepdog, 9x15 pastel commission

Belgian Sheepdog, 9×15 pastel commission


Mary Liz Ingram —  January 3, 2014 — 2 Comments

Twas the weeks before Christmas and all through the house, not a creature was stirring not even a mouse…

My blog site was quiet over Christmas. But this was only a trick. A facade, if you will.

I was quite the busy bee, but all my art had to stay hushed so as not to ruin Christmas surprises. I had lots of commissions, lots of gifts to create. Over the next few days I’ll catch you up on a few of the pieces that found new homes for Christmas!

Below is one of the first pieces this “commission season”…a very large, majestic white lab. Can I even tell you how much I enjoyed this piece? 


Tipping Point

Mary Liz Ingram —  September 29, 2013 — 2 Comments

Wow. September 8, huh? I used to be so good at posting…every other day, every 3 days. But this time I’ve waited a whopping 21 days – almost an entire month?!

How did that happen, we might ask.

Well, I’ll tell you.

This happened:

Ruby, 8x8 pastel

Ruby, 8×8 pastel

Because 3 kids, one a baby, at least 2 jobs a piece, not to mention a cat and 2 other dogs, weren’t enough responsibility for my husband and I. Apparently not.

Ruby is my tipping point. Google gives a handy explanation: “Tipping point, the point at which an object is displaced from a state of stable equilibrium into a new, different state.”

Yep, it is definitely a new and, ahem, “different” state we are now experiencing.

But seriously. We love this little pup, our miss Ruby. We may be in the throes of puppy potty-training, “No Bite!” yelling, toy eating, mischief making, vet billing puppy-hood, but she is already spoiled rotten.

And it was quite an adventure to get Ruby.

With the kids riding blind, we took them about 40 minutes out on a secret mission. We turned at the blue mailbox and met a great friend and fabulous co-worker at her in-law’s farm. And there was little Ruby.  Before we left, we visited some chickens and were chased by some goats. All in all, it was a grand adventure (thanks Mrs. Tina!!).

Here are a few photos of our newest addition:


Put Up Your Dukes

Mary Liz Ingram —  March 5, 2013 — 2 Comments

I’m sitting on my art room floor, folded in an adolescent position (for which later my joints paid dearly), bent over an 8×10 sepia colored piece of pastel card. My pastels lay to my left, my reference in front propped against a child’s white & marker-scribbled chair. The sun is shining in, the Lumineers sing to me as Pandora plays my choice of music.

The metaphorical bell sounds; that hollow metallic announcement that the fight begins.


In one corner, there is me, bent and ready for the battle. My opponent in the other, a photo of a large silver Maine Coon, waiting to be drawn.

The match begins with ease. I sketch that cat and win round 1.

"paint by number" phase

“paint by number” phase

I tackle the image with my initial layers of pastels, and reduce my opponent to art reminiscent of the “paint-by-numbers” of my childhood.

When it’s time for the unifying layers, where it is expected that I will triumph, the cat fights back. It’s lunchtime and I’m growing weak. My frustrations mount as we’re locked in a fierce battle. I attack with my pastels to no avail.

I return to my corner. My eyes are numb to the big picture and I need a rest. Details are blurred and frustrated, and my animosity towards the cat has escalated to muttered swearing. I eat. I rest. I separate from the cat. Continue Reading…

In Memory of George

Mary Liz Ingram —  January 13, 2013 — 1 Comment


Tonight we lost our 11-year old cat George. He was our first pet, discovered as a tiny kitten in a bush in Piedmont, Alabama the February before my husband and I were married. He leaves behind his best friend Sam, and his human family.  I drew this pastel of him as a kitten several years ago, and thought it was a fitting piece to share. We will miss our sweet George!

I’m teaching a class to a group of beginning pastelists: Some students have read up on pastel techniques, others may have had a few classes. My first instruction always throws them for a loop: “Begin with lots of black!”

As I’ve said before, I’m a self-taught artist…When it comes to pastels, I fiddled with them alone at my art desk until I discovered results I liked. And it all started with black.

Below you will find a quick tutorial using my own technique to create vibrant, textured pastel paintings. Continue Reading…