WOOF! Thank you for visiting i heart dogs studio, the home of pet portraits lovingly painted by me, Christine Humphries Throckmorton. Since 2007, I have created custom pet portraits, prints, cards, and more, all featuring lovable canines (and the occasional feline). Scroll down, take a look around, click away. You'll see a wide variety of pet portraits, and get to know a bit about the girl behind the canvas.

PLEASE NOTE: Now that I have a toddler, I am no longer accepting commissions. For now, I am shelving the paintbrushes and just enjoying being MOM. I have a variety of original paintings, prints, and cards available in my shop, however, and there is a lot of dog art to peruse in the pages of this here blog. Enjoy.

“I would rather see the portrait of a dog that I know, than all the allegorical paintings
they can show me in the world.” ~ Samuel Johnson

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Going out of business

As previously alluded to, I am closing up shop here. I loved painting dogs for the better part of the last seven years; but after the birth of a child, the death of a parent, and turning 40, my artistic desires are steering me in a different direction than dogs.

I have one portrait to fix, which is Schultz. And one canvas to finish, which is a portrait of Kona and Maui. I have given up trying to complete the 30 dogs of my last "30 dogs in 30 days/weeks" project, as it seems almost silly now that three years have passed since I started that project. If I didn't paint your dog as part of that project, I apologize.

I will post a final farewell soon. For now, however, I want to post a link to my Etsy shop for the last time. I am having, for lack of a better term, a fire sale on the art that remains unsold in my studio. Click here to purchase.


Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Christmas commission 2 of 2

My last commissioned pet portrait. Ever? Probably. Maybe not. Who knows. Definitely for a long, long while. I'm happy that the last one features such a handsome dog. This is Chase, an American Coonhound/Labrador Retriever mix. Thanks, Tom, for providing me my final commission. I hope your wife loves the portrait!

It was a bit of a rush to finish the last few paintings prior to Christmas. But I did it. As for the four remaining partially-done canvases I have, I plan to finish them soon, but leisurely. I'd like to complete one during my (gloriously long) holiday break, and tackle the other three here-and-there during my lunch breaks at work and/or during my daughter's naps. And when they are all completed, I plan to make a photo book commemorating seven years, 133 pet portraits, and this blog. Feelin' good!


Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Christmas commission 1 of 2

I am in the process of finishing several partially-painted canvases that have been in my studio for way.too.long. So one might think I was crazy to take on two(!) commissions. And Christmas gift commissions at that! But I did. And this is one of them. Remington, the Frenchie.

I struggled with him for a bit, and even thought that I lost my touch. But I took a break and I prayed for the confidence and guidance to finish the portrait strong...and it came. And Lisa, Remington's mom, said that it was perfect. Thanks, Lisa! I hope your husband loves the portrait.

With this portrait approved, that leaves five more to finish before I call it quits with pet portraiture: One more Christmas portrait, one more portrait for a charity auction winner, and the last three of my now-three-years-old 30 Dogs project.

It feels good to be painting on a regular basis again, but it also feels good to see the light at the end of the tunnel. I'm ready to close this chapter and begin a new (yet unknown) one.


Thursday, December 5, 2013

Winding down

After almost an entire year's hiatus from painting, I've emerged with two finished portraits: Schultz the Norwegian Elkhound and Mitzie, who I believe is an Australian Shepherd (confirmation on that is pending). And they are both way, WAY overdue.

I ran a contest on here three(!) years ago, in which I asked people to guess how many dog biscuits were in a jar. The winner was my friend Colleen. Thankfully Colleen is a personal friend with a lot of patience, because three years is a crazy-long time to wait for a dog portrait! {Especially one done in all pencil, which is what Colleen requested.} Mitzie's portrait was also a prize, this time from a charity auction last year. I promised the finished portrait to the auction winner, Mitzie's mom, by April. It is December and I just finished it today. Thankfully, she is also patient and very understanding. I can't believe it took me this long to complete such a small portrait (it is an 8" circle); but then again, the last year been a bit of a blur.

In my last post, dated March 2013, I mentioned that I could use some prayers. I was alluding to the fact that my dad was battling lung cancer. He passed away two months ago.

Over the past few weeks, I have found solace in painting. With that said, however, I am looking forward to finishing up all of the partially-done paintings in my studio—three from my last 30 Dogs project, another way-overdue portrait for a charity auction winner, and two holiday commissions—and calling it quits with pet portraiture, indefinitely. I am ready to close this chapter of my life and move on to other artistic pursuits. I don't know what those pursuits will be yet, but I know they will have to be doable for a full-time working mommy of a toddler. Pet portraiture just isn't. More on that when I have more art to post...


Thursday, March 7, 2013

The two portraits I did in 2012

2012 was a huge year for me. Three weeks into it, I gave birth to a beautiful baby girl.
It is now over a year later and I can say with certainty that I am shelving my paintbrushes for a while. I still (STILL) have some paintings that are unfinished (but partially done!) that I intend to complete. They are so, SO overdue, it's embarrassing. But I won't be soliciting commissions for a long time. There just isn't time in this full-time working mom's schedule to paint "on the side." There is no "on the side" at all. And I am OK with that. In a perfect world, I would be a stay-at-home mom. Or, considering how Type-A I am, a work-from-home mom. And I would make art and do crafts and blog about it all while my daughter was asleep....Maybe someday.

I completed two portraits in 2012. Quite the change from my previous years when I posted a big heart collage made out of that year's portraits. It is about quality, though, not quantity, right? I am very proud of these two portraits. Daisy the Portuguese Water Dog was done in acrylic on canvas. Maisie the Dutch Shepherd, portrait #27 in my latest 30 Dogs project, was done digitally, in Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop.

Speaking of digital portraits, while I am putting away the paintbrushes indefinitely, I absolutely am able to create DIGITAL pet portraits. That kind of art fits into my schedule, as I am on my computer a LOT, and when I want to finish (digitally) painting, I just put the laptop down. No messy cleanup! Makes a huge difference! Digital portraits can be ordered here.

I wish I could say 2012 was all sunshine and rainbows. Sadly, the year concluded with some tremendous setbacks and challenges for my family. Prayers are very much appreciated! One day at a time...


Saturday, October 13, 2012

SALE on original paintings

My poor neglected website. That's what having a baby will do.

Speaking of baby, mama's gotta buy diapers and clear some room in this house. I just sold an original from my 30 Dogs project that has been sitting around for over a year. This has lit a fire under my tushy to get the other ones sold.

I just priced them at $100 for unframed, and $125 for framed. And that is where the prices will stay. I need to get these things sold....and I really want them to be ENJOYED by dog lovers, rather than sitting in boxes under a bed in my spare room.

Spread the word. Help a new mommy out!

All 22 19 paintings can be found here. And my Etsy shop now accepts credit/debit payments; not just Paypal!

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Rupert with his portrait

I've said it before
and I'll say it again:
I absolutely LOVE receiving photos like this from clients. Love. Thanks, Pam. Rupert is so cute; I just want to smooch him!

I had a baby four weeks ago. She is fantastic. We are very happy. I'm exhausted.

I'm thankful to receive this photo to post, because artmaking is on hold indefinitely. Right now, I'm all about the baby. And trying to sleep whenever possible.


Friday, December 30, 2011


Me and The Bean: Chicago, April 2011
22 portraits in 12 months (not too shabby for a pregnant chick)
I'm less than three weeks away from my due date. Needless to say, I'm a wee bit overwhelmed. But I'm taking a moment to reflect on this last year. It was a doozy.

In 2011, I...
...visited New Orleans, LA for the first time
then, a week later, I...
...visited Chicago, IL for the third time (first with Kevin)
I also...
...got pregnant (also for the first time)
...had a painting published in a charity art book
...exhibited my dog portraiture in an art gallery (for the second time)
...created my first all-digital pet portrait
...branched out of just teaching Graphic Design, picking up two Fine Arts classes at the high school where I work
...visited Lake George, NY for the first time
...had my best-ever Etsy sales month (in December)
...discovered a new meaning to my 2011 word for the year (temple), through my pregnancy
...completed 22 dog portraits in 12 months

I hoped the final tally of portraits for 2011 would be 29 instead of 22, as I have seven outstanding portraits hanging over my head: three contest winners and the last four "30 Dogs" pieces. But, alas, another thing I did in 2011 was learn to let go. I had to put myself and the health of my baby first, which meant shelving some projects. I'm a little too Type-A to do this gracefully, but I did it. At least I have work lined up for 2012!

I've chosen a word for the new year, but I'm keeping it to myself. Perhaps this time next year I'll reveal it, along with all of the ways the word manifested itself in my life. I'm curious what I'll have posted, art-wise, a year from now. With the arrival of a baby, art production for me could go either way: I might be super-prolific or totally stagnant. Or anywhere in between. Time will tell.

No matter what, 2012 promises to be a great year for this girl! Hopefully for you, too!
Happy New Year!

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Last Christmas portrait reveal: MAGGIE

Lab mixes abound! Yesterday I posted a purebred Lab and a Lab mixed with Bassett. This little cutie is Lab mixed with Chow (thus the partially black tongue). The photos I received of Maggie made me wish I could reach into the pictures and touch her thick, soft fur! I can tell she's a sweet, lovable dog.

Maggie's dad, Bob, commissioned me to paint Maggie as a Christmas gift for his wife. Bob was my first client to request my patterned-paper-background style. Up until now, I used that technique on my own whim, so I was excited to receive a request for it. And his request was specific enough (yellow/daisies/ecological/nature/autumn were my key words) to give me a fun challenge in terms of hunting down the perfect paper, but flexible enough for me to be confident in my choice. I found this paper and I knew it was the way to go. Between the fun paper and the adorable dog (it's no secret I love to paint black dogs), this one was a pleasure to paint.

Thank you, Bob! I hope your wife was surprised and happy on Christmas morning!


Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Some Christmas commissions revealed!

Here are three portraits I've been keeping under wraps so I wouldn't spoil any surprises. It was difficult, because I'm really pleased with how all three portraits turned out.
At long last, I present Mindy, Chase, and Schnitzel.

Mindy is a German Shepherd mix. This commission came from my friend Mike, who has now commissioned FOUR portraits from me: Maddie for his friends, Bonaparte and Trigger for his parents, and now Mindy for his sister. As always, thank you, Mike! You rock!
Chase is a Yellow Lab puppy. His full name is Chase Mutley, which is a riff on Chase Utley, #26 of the Philadelphia Phillies. Angela found out about me through Camp Bow Wow (SO glad I have a sample portrait hanging there!). All of Chase's photos were adorable, but this photo was Angela's hubby's favorite. I hope he was surprised and happy on Christmas morning, Angela. Thank you!
Schnitzel, the Basset-Lab mix, was also commissioned by a patron of Camp Bow Wow. Just when I thought I had closed my queue for holiday portraits, I heard from Laura—a photographer and fellow art teacher! I had to paint this regal-looking boy. Thank you, Laura; I hope your husband loves the portrait!

I did two other Christmas commissions this year: Maggy and Maggie. One was gifted prior to Christmas, so I posted it already, and one I'll post soon.

I hope you enjoyed a wonderful holiday! I sure did!

Sunday, December 18, 2011

What's Christmas without a little GLITTER?

Silly me! I never posted the last six glitter dog silhouettes. Well, here they are. They look kinda festive, considering the season. Like ornaments, almost. At least they do to me, a person who is not decorating for Christmas at all, due to my 9-months-pregnant status.

Meet Disco Dalmatian, Beaming Beagle, Shimmering Schnauzer, Heck of a Husky, Not-so-Bashful Basset, and Cha-Cha Chihuahua. All but one are available in their very own section of my Etsy shop.

When I came up with the idea of these, I had 17 round wood plaques leftover from an old project. I made 17 glitter dog silhouettes—15 to sell, and 2 to gift to someone I admire from afar. I'm putting the glue and glitter away for a while (after I make one of my own dog for the baby's room, that is). But I might create a generic shop listing for a custom glitter silhouette. Two of these little gems have been purchased, and I hope the rest follow suit. They are so much cuter (and sparklier) in person. I think they'd make a great gift!

I am officially finished with holiday commissions! I can't wait to actually post them once Christmas is over! I'm quite proud of those paintings. I still have 7(!) portraits hanging over my head; but it's almost impossible for me to paint comfortably these days, and my maternity leave is looming. I've come to accept that some paintings will just have to wait until after the new year...and maybe even after the baby is born. There are two paintings for which the dog owners have paid money, both at silent auctions. In the spirit of fairness, those pieces are my priority. The rest have not been paid for in any way yet; so while they will definitely be completed, they will have to wait a bit.


Sunday, December 11, 2011

Saturday, December 3, 2011

My 2012 calendars=great stocking stuffers!

The calendars are printed! Can you tell I'm excited? I decided on a black and white theme this year, and I'm really happy with how it turned out.
Twelve of my favorite dog portraits are featured in this year's calendar. And, as is now tradition, my dog Rosie is Miss November (her birthday month).
When the year is over,
I re-purpose the calendars by cutting out the doggie part, attaching a ribbon, and voila! Instant bookmark!

You can purchase a calendar for yourself and/or to stuff in a dog lover's stocking in the holiday section of my Etsy shop.

Enjoy the season,

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

No spoilers here!

I'd love to post my recently-finished paintings, but I don't want to spoil any surprises! Of the five holiday commissions I took on this year, four are complete. I was able to post Maggy, because my client decided she couldn't wait until Christmas to give her husband the portrait. The others must stay under wraps until after the holiday. I've got one more to do, and hope to complete it by this Saturday. Operation Get All Artwork Done Before Baby Arrives is going slowly, but surely (I suppose).

So what's a girl to post, when she can't post any recent work? How about the photos I took of George Rodrigue's studio in New Orleans? I walked by after it was closed, so I could only point my camera in through the glass windows. On my next trip to NOLA, I will certainly go in and show some love for the blue dog and a very prolific artist.


Monday, November 14, 2011


This is the second of my completed holiday commissions this year. The first one has yet to be posted. I'm keeping it a secret until after Christmas, to ensure I don't ruin the surprise for the recipient.

This is Maggy, a beautiful Lhasa Apso that resides in Doggie Heaven. Her mom, Rose, is a co-worker of mine. Rose commissioned this portrait as a Christmas gift for her husband. But as I handed her the portrait today, she informed me that she won't be able to wait until Christmas to give it to her hubby! Thank you, Rose, for the commission. I'm honored to create this portrait of Maggy for you and Jim. Enjoy!


Friday, November 4, 2011

Holiday cards for sale

This year, for the Throckmorton family holiday card, I'm going to include a reference to the baby-on-the-way. My idea involves the nursery furniture. However, considering the nursery is still an office and we have a LOT of work to do in that room, I'm anticipating a last-minute holiday card design (and a rush charge at the printer!).

Speaking of holiday cards, for any Yorkie lovers, or fellow fans of The Velveteen Rabbit (my favorite children's book of all time), I have some packs of those holiday cards available in the holiday section of my shop.


Monday, October 31, 2011

A gift for a fellow blogger
(who doesn't know I exist)

I just completed eight glitter dog silhouettes. Six will be for sale, and the two pictured here will soon be shipped to a person whom I admire. A sort of thank-you for her blog musings, which I find very inspiring. This person has two dogs, and celebrates them with lots and LOTS of photographs. Do you recognize these dogs by their profile? Can you guess the blogger to whom they belong?

{UPDATE (1/3/12): This blogger's stock just rose with me. Big time. Today I got a thank-you note in the mail for the portraits I sent. Little gestures like that mean so much. She's famous AND gracious.}

The other six glitter silhouettes will be posted soon. For now, I'll reveal the breeds: Basset Hound, Beagle, Chihuahua, Dalmatian, Schnauzer, and Siberian Husky. In pretty, sparkly colors. Stay tuned!

Sunday, October 23, 2011


This is Haley, the Goldendoodle. She belongs to Michelle, one of the owners of Camp Bow Wow in Cherry Hill, NJ. My parents' dog, Abby, is a regular at Camp Bow Wow. Michelle graciously lets me put up a bit of advertising in the lobby. As a thank-you, I painted this portrait of Haley, which Michelle agreed to hang up at Bow Wow.

I'm a big fan of Goldendoodles. They are big and fluffy, yet lanky. And very sweet. I see a lot of them at the dog beach we frequent in the summertime.

Thank you, Michelle. I hope this portrait of Haley makes you smile....and makes your clients ask,"Who painted that?"

Saturday, October 8, 2011

30 Dogs Week 26: Alfie

Lounging on a plush red couch, Alfie certainly has the life, doesn't she? This gorgeous dog belongs to Mike, whom I've known since first grade! Mike is an animal lover and advocate, so I was honored to have him contribute a fantastic photo of Alfie to my 30 Dogs project. Thank you, Mike!

This was the portrait I was going to do in mosaic tile. But I opted against it when I found out I was pregnant. Grout dust + pregnancy = not a smart move. I'm glad I went the oils route on this one, because it was fun to paint that couch. I want to sit on that couch!

I'm balancing my studio time between the last 30 Dogs pieces (only 4 left now!), holiday commissions, and portraits for ever-so-patient contest winners. In fact, it's time to fix a cup of tea and get to work at the easel.

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