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Monday, January 15, 2018

Baby Raccoon painting available as prints

One of the first paintings to sell during my solo exhibition last April was this adorable little raccoon. I've had so many compliments about him and requests for prints that I decided to make some affordable reproductions available.  A portion of each sale will be donated to Wild at Heart Animal Rescue located in Walden, Ontario.

Please don't hesitate to contact me should you want to purchase a print of  "You Lookin' at Me?"
Print size is 5"x7" and can be framed in a 5x7 frame without mat or in an 8x10 frame with a mat.

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Bengal cat painting in progress video

Here is a short video I created that demonstrates the process of creating a charming cat portrait. I am using soft pastel pencils and Nupastels on velvety suede panel. Enjoy and thanks for watching!

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Pet portraits in pencil of dogs

Black and white pencil portraits are usually created using either graphite or charcoal. Sometimes, I use both types of pencils to render a drawing, in order to achieve the deepest of blacks. Since traditional pencil drawings do not involve using any white pencil, the white marks or areas are actually the white of the paper showing through.
These sweet pooches were commissioned as a Christmas gift for my client's spouse. Sadly, Joe has passed but I was fortunate to meet miss Bree when the client received their portraits.

English Setter
pencil drawing
German Shepherd
pencil drawing

Monday, February 13, 2017

Yellow Labrador Dog Pet Portrait commission

When I first saw the reference image I was using for Ollie's portrait I thought oh, how much FUN it was going to be to draw this pose! One can't help but smile looking at Ollie's charming face as she stares right back at you.
This portrait was commissioned to remember all the joy that Ollie brought to the lives of her human family.

Yellow Labrador Retriever

Saturday, February 11, 2017

Dog pet portrait commission from photo

I was commissioned to paint a portrait of a beautiful dog named "Jimi", whom sadly passed away of cancer at the tender age of 12.  The portrait was to be given to the client's spouse as a Christmas gift to commemorate the life of their cherished pet.

There are countless poses to choose from when creating a portrait and the client in this case chose a traditional head/shoulder pose where Jimi stands so handsome and proud !

dog portrait

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Drawn to Nature Solo Exhibition by Colette Theriault

I am pleased to announce my upcoming exhibition at Artists on Elgin, Sudbury Ontario, begining April 1st to the 27th, 2017. The opening reception/meet the artist will take place on Saturday, April 8th from 1-4 pm. Everyone welcome!

Friday, January 20, 2017

Christmas pet portrait commission of Pit Bull Terrier dog

With my solo show just around the corner, I have been quite busy in the studio creating new works and neglecting to update my blogs and website...I will try to post paintings more often as I have many to share with you!!
So today, I thought I'd share a secret commission that I completed last year for a client. It was given as a Christmas present for their spouse.  The dog portrait was done using pastels on suede panel and it took many hours of layering to get the details just right. Isn't she a real sweetie??

Pit Bull Terrier

Friday, October 7, 2016

Shetland Sheepdog charcoal pencil drawing (pet portrait)

I have been fortunate for all the request I have received for portraits since I began taking commissions well over 15 years ago.  In that time span, I have learned much, and there is always something new to learn or adjust to. Social media is one of them and is a double edged sword as it can bring great rewards but is also very time consuming.  Still, one should not overlook the possibilities and never take things for granted as you just never know what can come out of it!!

This portrait was commissioned from a repeat client. I am very honored and flattered at each and every request and this one is no exception. He was a charm to draw! 


Thursday, October 6, 2016

Akita Painting using pastels (Pet Portrait Commission)

I was asked to paint this portrait of a gorgeous Japanese Akita for a client. There were several photos to chose from and it was decided that this one of the dog in the snow was most pleasing and fitting since the pet's name was "Snow"!
I am available for commissions of any pet you may have or have had, fury, feathery, scaly, or even slimy! Being a nature artist and biologist, painting animals, pets and wildlife is like Second Nature!


Akita dog portrait using pastels

I'm having so much fun painting this commission of an Akita frolicking in the snow! After I completed most of the facial features, I added the snow background/foreground before I can finish up the fur around the outline of the dog.

I hope you enjoy watching the progress of my pet portraits...

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Custom portrait of sheltie/border collie mix painting using pastels

When I was approached to paint this portrait of Kara, I was astonished to see the long fur on her very erect ears. I was thrilled at the chance to draw a dog with such a charming appearance and wonderful colors. She will truly be missed by her loving family and I am honored to have been chosen to create such a touching lasting memory of a dear loyal companion.

Shetland Sheepdog/Border Collie mix

Painting of Chocolate and Yellow Labrador Retriever portrait

Some months, time goes buy so fast that I barely remember the days. I work on many different projects simultaneously and so it can be easy to loose track of the world around me.

Anyways, I home to find more time to post more updates to this blog. Here is a commissioned piece that was presented to a happy Dad on Father's Day.  I am told that he feels like the dogs keep looking at him no matter where he moves to in the room and he is quite elated by that! It's like his dogs are again by his side, keeping him company.

Apollo & Cassey

A portrait begins with the eyes...the window to the soul!

  I am often asked, when working on a piece, if I start with the eyes on my paintings and the answer is almost always "yes".  Now you may ask why do I start with the eyes when creating a portrait? There are a few reasons:

   Firstly, I want to feel connected to the subject and since the eyes are "the window to the soul", I am able to see the spirit and character early on which helps me render a realistic representation.

    Secondly, I don't particularly like staring at blank ghostly orbits as the rest of the subject comes to life. It's like I'm staring at a ghostly figure with no emotion.

   Thirdly, once I am satisfied I have rendered the eyes to convey the subject's unique character and charm, it gives me confidence that I can truly achieve a good likeness. It just has to look like the client's pet and of course, they have to be in love with it too!


You can follow the progress of this and many other portraits on my official facebook page and website 

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Dog Portrait of Shih Tzu and Terrier mix

Pets mean so much to us that they have taken the role of our "furry children" as some people call them. The loyal companionship and unconditional love are probably the main reasons why we keep pets. So, it is no wonder that we want to cherish them forever, and what better way to honor them than with a custom portrait?

I am always thankful when it is possible to meet my subjects in real life as I can instantly get a sense of their true character...something that I always strive to capture on a portrait, along with the obviously important true likeness of course! So, when I was asked to help with photographing these two "fur sisters", I was thrilled at the chance to meet them. As I explained to the client, it is not necessary to capture the two pets on the same photo...that is something that the artist has the ability and freedom to do when they paint or draw their portrait!

Since it is not always possible for me to photograph your pet, I obviously must rely on the client to provide me with photos of them. I am always available to help you choose the right photos for your pet and create one or several "mock up" images to help you decide on the right pose, FREE of charge.  And if you don't have that "perfect" photo of your pet, no worries as I can use my artistic license along with your verbal or written description to create a likeness that you will love!

Chloe and Kacey

Saturday, June 18, 2016

Seems like forever since my last post here but with social media sites to maintain, it's difficult to update the blog and main websites!! And of course...summer is finally here so lots of yard work to do in the gardens.  I have also been busy creating many commissions, presenting workshops and teaching private students, as well as decorating cakes! Yikes, I need to share so many news! So much more to come but for now...

I thought I'd share that today I am featured Artists of the day at the Artists's for Conservation website!
Here are some screen shot taken from my phone...and why not hop on over at and see what this prestigious organization is all about?!

Monday, April 18, 2016

Weimaraner portrait drawing using graphite, charcoal and colored pencils

I love creating all sorts of portrait poses for my clients!  The following dog drawing was composed using two of the client's photos which features a puppy shot as the main pose and a smaller vignette of the same dog as an adult, portraying one of Addie's favorite pastime. 

For this drawing, I used mainly graphite pencils along with a touch of colored pencils on the main pose. I felt we really had to capture the Weimaraner's impressive pale blue eyes and the unusual brown nose and tones in her shinny fur. In addition, the mauve and green colours of the collar seems to liven up the whole composition.

I really like how the shimmering silver grey tones of  Addy's coat turned out...coupled with that adorably sweet expression, it definitely has become one of my favorite commissions to have had the opportunity to draw!!

So, if you happen to know anyone who might be interested in having a portrait of their furry, scaly or feathery companion, I'd be forever grateful if you could share my website with them! ♥

Silver Gray Weimaraner 
enhanced graphite drawing

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Painting in pastel of black capped chickadee and golden aspen in autumn.

I am thrilled beyond thrilled that this fresh new painting of 2016 sold, and before it was ever completed! Since I've  had multiple inquiries about purchasing this chickadee painting, I fully intend on producing limited edition giclee prints so that others can enjoy it as well. And of course, more bird paintings to come in the future!

Photographs of original artwork never do them justice and this one is no exception. I still have to scan and tweak a digital copy to match the original as close as possible but this photo gives you a good idea of the warm soft glowing light shinning through the heart-shaped aspen leaves. So, I aptly named this artwork "Heartwarmer"; I hope you like it! Feel free to share if you like my work! Thanks so much!!


Black-caped chickadee in trembling poplar
approx 8x10
Private Collection
More work available on my website gallery

Thursday, February 18, 2016

Quarter (Barrel) Horse Pencil Drawing Portrait Commission

Horses have been a favorite animal of mine since early childhood so it comes as no surprise that I embrace every opportunity I have to paint or draw them!

I was asked to draw this beautiful horse's portrait as a memorial tribute for a friend. I used mainly 8B and F pencils along with my tortillions, chamois and Q-tips for delicate blending.

The original photo included a busy background and the horse was wearing a halter but it was decided to leave those out of the drawing to focus on the subject.

graphite pencils

View the work in progress below: 

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Painting in Pastel: A Golden Retriever Portrait Commission

I was asked to paint a portrait of this charming Golden Retriever to be presented as a birthday/graduation gift.  The pose below is actually a composite created from two of the client's photographs (the dog was in the snow).  It can be tricky to compose a portrait in this manner as the artist has to consider lighting, angles, and proportions and ensure these are accurately rendered. 

To view more detail, click the image to enlarge.


Thursday, January 14, 2016

Pastel bird painting of great egret

I started working on the composition of this painting last year and then had put it aside as I was busy with commissions. It was inspired from a photograph I took while visiting Florida during the spring breeding season. This Great Egret was busy pruning his feathers and long graceful plumes and seemed oblivious to the fact that I was a few meters away snapping shots of him.  

I will be posting a time-lapse video of the work in progress at a later date as I now must get back to those commissions waiting for me in the studio. 

 This painting is now SOLD!

Great Egret
Private Collection

Monday, January 11, 2016

Silverpoint Oak Leaf Drawing (.999 pure fine silver)

Something new I've been experimenting with and am very excited to announce that I will be taking commissions using Silverpoint beginning in the next few months.

The extremely fine detail that can be achieved using Silverpoint is somewhat like scratchboard... I  have to use a magnifying glass while working!  You can really see the silvery glistening shine when looking at the drawing at different angles. BUT, you truly must see this in person to appreciate the qualities of the silver on paper.


"Oak Leaf"
Private Collection

I only use fine quality .999% pure silver for my drawings and the finest archival support that is available.

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Step 9 of Egret pastel painting

Now that I've completed the feathers on this bird and satisfied enough to leave them alone, I have begun working the foliage. At first, I painted the leaves a yellow green hue that went well with rest of the painting BUT just did not sit well with the frame. I then opted to try a blueish tint which was ok but perhaps a bit to saturated with blue.

After my third attempt (below), I believe this is the best color scheme that will suit both the frame and the rest of the painting. While it is nice to have frames on hand, sometimes, it can be a pain to match them to a particular color scheme in a composition and the artist has to be prepared to make changes along the way. Perhaps  I should have done a sample thumbnail composition first but I was happy experimenting and adapting the color scheme as I was working my way through this painting.

Monday, January 4, 2016

Time-lapse Video of a Pastel Painting of Fisherman on the Spanish River, Ontario

Most of my commissions represent great sentimental value to my clients/recipients and this one is no exception. The gentleman portrayed in the scene is unfortunately no longer with us and the family wanted something to remember him by that would bring back fond memories.

The scene is located on the Spanish River at a favorite fishing spot in front of the family cottage on a calm but sunny and warm day.  I can't think of a better portrait to commemorate this particular individual.

For more videos of my paintings and drawings in progress, visit my youtube channel at:

Colette Theriault youtube channel

"Fishing the Spanish"

Friday, January 1, 2016

Step 6 Great Egret Painting in pastel

During the last few days, I've been working on making more time-lapse videos of  Pet Portrait Christmas commissions (which I will share in my next post).  Eventually, when this bird painting is finished, I will be making a video clip of it as well.

Later this afternoon, I took some time out to continue working on the wing feathers of the Great Egret. It can be hard to resist the temptation to overwork parts of a painting...which is what I unfortunately felt I was doing today! I think I will leave those parts of the wing feathers and move on to a different section...

Before the day is over, I want to wish you all a very Happy New Year! I plan to create quite a number of personal pieces this year as I get ready for a solo show! 

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Commissioned Pastel Portrait of a Lady and her Cat with time-lapse video

I was commissioned to paint this portrait of the client's wife and her cherished cat from a "not-so-good" 4x6 photo taken in the mid 1970's.  The client explained that they had lost all of their belongings, in a recent house fire and he really wanted to surprise his spouse with a very special Christmas gift. And all I had to work with was this one photo...

So the pressure was on and I was committed to make this my challenge piece of 2015!  I have created a time-lapse video of the progression of this portrait which can be viewed below!

Sunday, December 27, 2015

Step 5 Great Egret Bird Painting work in progress

On this step I have completed most of the bird's long neck feathers. I continue to add dark to medium grey and brown pastel as my under-painting, to created those parts of the white plumage that are darkened by shadows. Stay tuned for more feather painting!!

For those who are curious, the bird is a Great Egret, (Ardea alba), also named the Common Egret, Great White Heron.

Saturday, December 26, 2015

Step 4 of Egret bird painting using pastels

I am at the stage now where the bird is starting to pop out of the painting.  The light subject and a dark background creates strong contrast.  Keep watching for more updates!

Egret bird painting work in progress

Now that I've worked most of the background on the left side of the bird, the fun part of adding the main subject can begin!

Although it may be hard to see on this image, I've been adding undertones to the bird's head feathers to give some strong contrast against the white body. Click on the closeup image for a better view.

Friday, December 25, 2015

Winter Snowshoe Hare Pencil Drawing

Wishing you all a very Merry Christmas and many thanks for all the support and encouragement throughout the year!

This year we have an unusually warm and green Christmas. While I really enjoy the warmer temps, I sort of miss the beautiful blanket of snow. I am sure the snowshoe hare probably prefers the white stuff as well since his white coat makes him stick out like a sore thumb amid the browns, golds and greens of the forest!

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

New tropical bird painting in pastels on my easel!

I started working on a new bird painting featuring a tropical species that I photographed in St-Augustine, FL several years ago. I have so many reference photos that sometimes, I want to paint them all and really have a hard time choosing which one to do next.

Working in pastels requires protective framing (which can be expensive!!) and since I already had the perfect frame for this composition,  I decided this was the one!  I hope you enjoy watching the progress of this piece.

Friday, December 11, 2015

Temagami Lake Ontario sunrise painting in pastel

This pastel landscape painting of a lake sunrise is the second piece featured at the GNO's Nouveau Louvre Exhibit in Sudbury, Ontario. The dark spruce trees and their mirror reflection contrast against the pale baby blue and coral sky/water. What a glorious calm morning on this beautiful pristine Northern Ontario lake....the start to a picture perfect fishing day!


Temagami Sunrise
Private Collection

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Pastel skies and misty water landscape painting

Fresh off the easel!! The following pastel painting is one of two that I will have featured (among other artists' work) from Nov. 21st to Dec. 23rd at the Nouveau Louvre Exhibition (GNO,174 Elgin St. Sudbury).  This is the gallery's most important fundraiser where all works of art are priced at 200$, with 75$ going to the gallery and 125$ to the artist.

 Don't miss out on owning an original and affordable piece of genuine ART! Just in time for holiday gift giving (or to buy for yourself!).

"Misty Morning"

This pastel painting comes mounted in a floating black frame:

Monday, November 16, 2015

New Limited Edition Print of Snow Leopard with Remarque

What is so unique about these Artist's Proof limited edition prints is that each of them have a different hand-drawn "remarque" or little drawing. And since there are only FIVE of these individualized prints, it makes them much more desirable to own.   

So, let me introduce you to AP 2/5 of  my snow leopard drawing "Peaceful Repose"!

I will be selling this print framed and will post a photo when it is all dressed up. Contact me if you are interested in owning a piece of my h-art :)

Close up detail of the remarque that I hand-drew on the giclée print.