Painting the Poochie

Have you heard of Painting With a Twist?  Is that a thing outside of Michigan?  If you haven’t heard of it, it is basically an art studio where you can go and learn how to paint a painting.  The best part is it’s for anyone with any (or no) level of skill.

In their traditional class, everyone in the class paints the same picture.  The instructor tells you paint stroke by paint stroke what to do.  I have had friends that have done it and their paintings have all come out great!

I had been meaning to give it a try when a friend of mind asked if I wanted to do their pet painting class. I immediately said yes, which won’t surprise you if you have any clue how crazy I am about my dog.  Paint my puppy’s portrait so I can hang my punkin on the wall?  Yes, please!

The only problem is, once I agreed and we signed up, I started to get a little nervous.  I had never actually painted a painting before and I hadn’t taken one of their regular classes…how in the world was I going to pull off an elaborate painting of my dog?

For the pet painting class, you send in a picture of your pet ahead of time, they sketch it out on canvas for you and then it’s up to you to paint it.  They give the entire class basic instruction and come around to help individually, but because everyone is painting a different picture, it is more of a challenge than their normal classes.

Nerves aside, I was really looking forward to some art therapy that night as I was a bit out of sorts from a not so happy day.  But my mood instantly improved when I walked in and saw my prepped canvas.  Their sketch from my picture looked so good!


Kodi sketch

Aw, there’s my baby!


The instructor told us the first step was to do the background color.  I started blending something kind of teal-ish and off I went, surprisingly easily.  I realized later that this part of the painting process falsely led me to believe that this whole portrait painting business wasn’t going to be so hard after all…


kodi sketch background


The next step was to do the ‘medium’ colors.  They explained some brush stroke techniques, which I promptly forgot and I started smooshing medium colors onto the canvas.  I was really worried about losing the lines, but ‘fear not,’ my instructor said, so on I painted.


Kodi medium colors


The next two steps were the dark colors and the finishing touches like the nose and eyes. There are no pictures from this stage…because holy heck!  It was hard!!  I could not focus on picture-taking when Kodi’s nose looked like a big blob of brownie batter and I was afraid to even start the eyes.  Thank goodness one of the instructors came by and saw my pleading face.  He swooped in, helped me paint the nose (read: he painted the nose) and gave me some tips for the eyes.


painting class2

Teach teachin’


I posted some pics on my Facebook page and I think a few people thought I was using false modesty when I said I really struggled.  I swear, I’m pleased with how the painting turned out, but I also know how much I struggled.  Happily, though, with the help of the instructors, I was able to come away with something I’m not ashamed to hang on my wall.


finished painting at class

There he is, sassy glint in his eye and all 🙂


Now whether Kodi is ashamed for this to hang on my wall, is anyone’s guess.  Or not…I’m thinking it’s not hard to guess…


kodi with his painting

That look on his face does NOT say ‘way to go mom.’



The Name is Bond. Jane Bond. Or Not.

I have some very, very sad news.  It was a hard week for me, once I came to this realization.  Because I found out something important about myself…

I will never be a super secret spy. sad face


I had already had given up my dreams of being a princess (no pedigree) or a ballerina (not so gifted with the gracefulness).  I also accepted that I was not going to be a scientist (let’s just say math and I are not on the same wavelength) nor a truck driver (Yes, I wanted to be one!  But I think you have to have some sort of spacial awareness for that, yeah?).  But darn it, now I’m not going to be a super secret spy, either!

Before I was born, my dad was in the CIA.  So I always just imagined that should I ever have the inclination, I would be a natural, right?  Because surely I inherited the genes.  But I didn’t!  In reality, it turns out I would be more of a Maxwell Smart-type (old people like me will get that reference) and I’m just so dejected.

My first inkling of my less than sneaky skills was when I ‘friended’ my brother and his wife on my Kinley Dane Facebook page.  Seems innocuous, but it took me a few days to realize that if friends and family on my personal Facebook were to see that my brother ‘liked’ or commented on something on my Kinley Dane Facebook, they would know about Kinley Dane and my super secret alter ego would be exposed!

So I regrouped my spy skills and banned my brother from liking and commenting.  When I posted a picture of myself on my Kinley Dane Facebook, I think my text to him was, ‘Whatever you do, for the love of God, DON’T LIKE OR COMMENT ON MY FACEBOOK POST!’

But then I found myself commenting on my brother’s posts in one persona and then continuing the conversation in the OTHER persona.  Multiple times.  And I couldn’t blame him for that, much to my disappointment.

The final straw came when I posted the same video on both of my Facebook pages.  I took this silly video of my pets in my bed (if you want to watch it, go here) and tried to post it directly to my personal Facebook from my phone.  After a while, when it still hadn’t appeared, I tried to post it again.  And, oddly enough, it still didn’t work, so I decided to try another way and posted it to Facebook from You Tube on my computer.  That time it showed up, so all was well.  Until I logged onto my Kinley Dane Facebook page and saw the darn video posted twice there!

So that was it, slapped rudely in the face by my own ineptitude.  But there’s good news on the horizon!  There’s still one more childhood dream job I haven’t explored, yet.

I’m going to be a lion rescuer!  Or an orphaned monkey caregiver.  OR a goat keeper.  Yeah, that is definitely one I still want to be.  I mean, what could go wrong, right?