Ball! Ball! Ball!

Oil on canvass panel, 6″x4″
My dogs are a big part of my life, which means I live to serve their needs, in large part because I love them and, well, they don’t have thumbs. My oldest dog, Zip, is a 7 year old Aussie Catahoula rescue mutt from Austin Pets Alive!. Her world revolves around two things – food and “ball”. To that end, I serve as her chef and throwing machine.
The lifespan of a Zip tennis ball is a couple weeks. She chews on them while bringing the ball back for another throw, as if they’ve offended her and need to be destroyed. It’s the epitome of a love hate relationship.
This piece is a tennis ball after 1 throwing session. The fuzz and color have been adequately altered, making what had been a boring, new green smooth tennis ball into something with depth and intrigue. Thank you Zip!
I like to do these small dog toy pieces on a canvass board to help with texture. In this piece, it was very helpful with the need to pull out strands of tennis ball fuzz because the rough surface helped scatter the stringy look in a random pattern, thus making it look more natural. The hardest part was getting the dirt just right, which took some experimentation with Burnt Sienna, Raw Umber, and various puddles of orange.
Finally, I was pleasantly surprised how effective the white line of the tennis ball added realism. It was also important to put a small hint of shadow along the edge of the white line to give just enough depth on the surface of all that green fuzz.
Tennis Ball - Oil Panel 2

5 thoughts on “Ball! Ball! Ball!

  1. Pingback: Ball! Ball! Ball! Ball! – Impasto

  2. Really nice dog-chewed tennis ball. I think it’s the seam on the ball that really makes it obviously a tennis ball, and you’re really transmuted the texture of the ball from image into painterly substance. Great stuff!

    Like

    • Hi, Eric. Thanks for the feedback. And I think you’re spot on regarding the seam. I wish I had taken some progression pics of this piece because it would have shown everyone how lacking it was before the seam was added. Cheers!

      Liked by 1 person

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