“The Best Gift Ever”

You may remember that during our fundraiser, we introduced our readers to the genius and adorable-ness (what? This is my blog… I can make up words if I want!) that is Yellow Brick Home. If not, you can check out the post here.

Yellow Brick Home is a dynamic duo of a husband and wife team. Kim is the artist behind these masterpieces, that feature the mugs of YOUR precious pets. That’s right… utilizing photos of your fur-children, along with detailed descriptions of their personalities and past-times, she creates one-of-a-kind works of art to encapsulate all that you know and love about your pet. Okay, they aren’t exactly cuddly and squeezable, as they are painted on wooden blocks… but seriously people, we are talking minute attention to detail and incredibly intricate work! Painted with whimsical creativity and bright, bold backgrounds, Kim has a knack for capturing the adorable antics that set our pets out from the rest of the pack. Don’t believe me? See what I mean… and try to spot some of your blogging favorites!

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We… well, I… have been wanting to commission some portraits of our pups for quite some time now. Of course, I was strategically hoping to find a way for this to be a ‘gift’ as well; you know, a two dogs, one bone kinda thing. What better time than Foster Dad’s birthday?!

DSC_0017For budgeting reasons, we chose the smallest size, but you really can’t go wrong with any choice! (They are available in 4×4, 6×6, or 8×8 blocks) We can’t wait to add more to our collection!

This gift was a 100% surprise for Foster Dad… which, if you know me in real life, is so rare. I can’t lie, can’t tell a fib, and certainly can’t resist spoiling a good surprise! I L-O-V-E selecting gifts, about 10x more than I love receiving them. So sometimes the anticipation of giving that perfect gift is just TOO MUCH for me to bare, and I end up letting the dog out of the crate, so to speak. But this time, it was just too good… I may have dropped some hints here and there, but it is safe to say that Foster Dad was legitimately surprised! (Don’t mind the fact that I made him open all of his presents on Friday night, when his birthday wasn’t actually until Monday… that’s just what I like to call stretching out the celebration, people!) He may have even shed a tear or two, but don’t tell him I told you that! Gaige is his little baby, after all.

Of course, what portrait of Gaige would be complete without her big red ball?

I think it’s safe to say that Gaige approves…

Of course, what portrait of Gaige would be complete without her big red ball? And if you look closely, you will even notice the slight white roaning across her back. It’s our girl!

I am telling you… run, don’t walk, over to The Pet Shop to place your order. You will be so glad that you did!

Thank you so so much, Kim! We just adore your work. This will be a treasured keepsake for years to come… J already told me that it is his ‘fire thing’. (You know, the one thing you’d grab if there was a fire and all living beings had been safely removed from the home. How special!) Did I mention that Kim had this to us well BEFORE the estimated delivery date? I told you she was the best…

Fundraiser: Prize #10 – Sunshine & Pitties

When we got married, I was so honored to have Foster Dad’s (FOUR!) sisters standing beside me on our big day. It was really important to me to find unique and distinctive gifts for each of his special ladies, that applied to their respective interests. I didn’t want to go the route of gifts with our wedding date engraved for years to come. For J’s youngest sister, E, it was so simple. We both share a passion for animals, and a lifelong dedication to the world of competitive horse showing. Where I had my once-in-a-lifetime horse named Frosty, hers is also a gorgeous, tall, gray gelding, named Norman. I knew that for her gift to be especially meaningful, I would need to incorporate her first love and best man! After taking a few (amateur!) shots of her gallant steed, I sent them along to an incredibly talented artist who specialized in custom animal portraits. Of course, E opened her gift with an appropriate mix of speechlessness and tears, and I was so proud to be able to provide her with such a treasured keepsake, truly indicative of my appreciation for her role in our lives, and in our special day.

I share this story to illustrate just how sacred such a gift can be. Our animals grace our lives in a pivotal, yet heartbreakingly brief, way. Having their presence preserved in a work of art to display in your home, is a gift that is truly invaluable.

DawgArt –  Unleash Your Pet’s Colorful Personality!

The watermark will not appear on the print, it is just to protect the copyrighted images!

The watermark will not appear on the print, it is just to protect the copyrighted images!

Alicia is an artist that specializes in pet portraiture and animal art in vivid color. She created her company, DawgArt, in 2003. She draws inspiration from a former professor, who would leave his students with the message to “Use your powers for good!” Alicia believes that art has power, and so when she puts her brush to her canvas, she has two goals: 1) to communicate the soul of one creature to another, and 2) to make people smile. All it takes is one look at her work to know that she brilliantly achieves both goals! However, she also absolutely uses her power for good, advocating for no-kill rescue and working with many animal rescues across the country.

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Alicia has worked with almost every breed of dog imaginable.

 

While she works primarily in acrylic on canvas, Alicia also dabbles in photography, dry media, and writing. The inspiration for the color splash in her portraits comes from her youth in the desert Southwest. Alicia was born in Germany and raised in sunny Arizona, but now lives in Utah with her husband Tyler, their rescued cat Kiko, and their shelter dog Toby.

Alicia's work includes, dogs, cats, horses, and even wild animals!

Alicia’s work includes, dogs, cats, horses, and even wild animals!

 Please visit Alicia’s store (here) to purchase any of these prints, but of course, she also embraces and encourages private commissions of custom portrait work. Can you imagine how impressive it would be to have a portrait of your own pet done in her bright and sunny style?! She captures the personality of her subjects so truly and eloquently, that you can’t help but smile.

Alicia has graciously offered a donation of 8×10 fine art prints. Please make a donation to our fundraiser for LCPO’s needy pit bulls, in increments of $10, to earn an entry! The bigger your donation, the more chances you have to win and one of our fabulous prizes!

Fundraiser: Prize #2 – Pet Portraits!

As a semi-newlywed, I am still working on making our home a cozy and warm environment. We are lucky to have a home that is safe & sound, but I did move into what was previously my husband’s bachelor pad, so this has been no easy task! I don’t know about you guys, but some days it seems like the most visible ‘decorations’ in our home, consist of doggie-related items. I wish I were talking about things like custom portraits and signs, but I’m referring more to shredded dog toys, misplaced leashes, and food bowls… which is why I was so excited to make friends with Kim, who blogs at Yellow Brick Home. You guys are going to be over the moon when you see her creations…

Yellow Brick Home: The Pet Shop – Custom Pet Portraits

One of their (many!) commissioned portraits. Look at the detail!

One of their (many!) commissioned portraits. Look at the detail!

 

Kim personally creates one-of-a-kind custom artwork of your four-legged family members. You simply send in a few photos of your pet, as well as a brief description of their antics and personality, and Kim produces absolute masterpieces!

How cute are they?!

How cute are they?!

What started out as a portrait made as a gift for her hubby, quickly escalated into a full-fledged, thriving business! Through word-of-mouth, Kim was faced with as much work as she could handle. Inspired by their fur children, Maddie, Libby, Jack, who are all rescues themselves, 10% of the sales go to rescues. As if you needed another reason to love her!

Custom portraits make a great gift solution for those animal-lovers who are especially hard to buy for. Not only that, but they work really well for foster families that want a special way to remember their beloved foster pets, once they have moved onto their new homes. The portraits are done on 5×5 blocks, which can produce a great small gallery look for a wall in your home. Head over to their website to check out the special Valentine’s Day discount they are offering for gift certificates purchased between now and Friday! For most of us, our pets are our favorite topic of conversation… why shouldn’t the art work in our homes feature our four-legged family members? I have big plans for some prints I want to commission of our own pets! Stay-tuned…

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In the mean-time, The Pet Shop has graciously offered to contribute 3 of their Art Prints to our giveaway, to be selected by the winner. Head over to check them out… you will be blown away by the attention to detail and whimsical colors. The animals range from cats and dogs of varying breeds, to wild animals like giraffes and gorillas! I personally think they could make an especially adorable addition to a nursery.

 

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If you find yourself falling in love with some of these precious (low-maintenance!) pets, and think they would make a great addition to your home, simply head here to make a contribution to our fundraiser for our rescue, LCPO. You will be entered to win your choice of 3 prints from The Pet Shop! Remember, our goal is to raise $500, which will all go to helping LCPO save needy pit bulls like our Georgia girl. For each $10 donation you make, you will be entered once to win an array of prizes.

Remember, every day, we will be featuring another generous sponsor. Check back often to see what exciting new prizes we will be adding!