This past summer, Struttin Pup helped sponsor an art exhibit called “Raining Cats and Dogs” put on by The Humane Society of Boulder Valley at the Dairy Center in Boulder. There were some amazing pieces of art, including those of local artist, Kelly Schoenfeld of Pop Your Paws. Her colorful, fun pieces grabbed our attention immediately. Soon after, we reached out to Kelly and asked her to be Struttin Pup’s very first featured artist after our remodel this past year. We are so honored and happy to showcase Kelly’s work (look for it on the east wall, above our dog food selection) at Struttin Pup. We thought you’d enjoy learning a little bit more about how an artist becomes an “animal artist”, so without further ado, here’s our interview with Kelly!
How did you get started painting dogs? Were you always an artist?
I’ve always been creative and had a job doing graphic design or photography. After doing hand tinted black and white portraits and then doing family portraits, I wanted to change it up. I have a passion for helping animals and have dogs my whole life. I wanted to figure out a creative way to work with animals and continue having my own business.
What are some of your favorite pieces that you’ve done?
My all-time favorite is of my own dog Duke, the Morkie. I guess that’s a little biased though. It’s so hard to say because I’m happy with every portrait I give to a client. I did do portraits for two guys that were on Million Dollar Listing L.A. They love their animals and I sent it to one person and hand delivered the other one and we met.
How do you work with people and their pets?
I have done canvases for people all across the United States. They email a high-resolution photo and I work off of that. It’s all in the eyes of the animal and love to work with close-up photos. Then I create a pop art version of the pet (dog, cat, bunny, horse, etc.) and then create a background. My website only gives a sample of a few of those backgrounds. A lot of times I create on the spot depending on how the pet ends up looking. I love the clouds background and have done different versions and colors of those. I have also sold copies of canvases I’ve done because people just love the art, but don’t have that kind of pet. Or they buy it because it’s the same breed of dog as theirs.
Let’s get personal! Tell us about yourself.
I do not have formal art training, I’ve just always loved creative things. I love design and whether it is going through a scrapbooking phase or designing a whole house it’s fun to me. My daughter is 14 and extremely talented when it comes to everything creative. My son is 10 and is a huge athlete. Duke, is my Morkie and is 3. I have never lived without a dog except for college. As soon as I graduated I bought a Beagle, Zoebelle and then when I got married we also got a rescue Maggie Mae who was a Border Collie mix. Now we just have Duke and he has the personality of many dogs! When I’m not working on my business I’m either being a mom or doing something active either in the gym or outside.
Kelly’s work will be on display at Struttin Pup throughout November but we’ll continue featuring other local artists, including some of very own groomers! Who knew they were as talented with paintbrushes as they were with scissors and clippers!