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Thursday 13 December 2018

The making of a bespoke dog mosaic

One thing I love about my job is the variety of commissions I am asked to make.  Now, to be honest, in the past, I have steered away from doing mosaics of people and pets.  It is very hard to get a true likeness, which I have found disappointing, which leads to me worrying about disappointing my client.
But when I received an enquiry a few months ago to make a mosaic of a dog, Vinnie, who had sadly recently passed away, I just wanted to do it.  Vinnie spent a lot of time in the garden with his owners and they wanted an exterior mosaic to hang on the wall, so that he would somehow be with them still - pet owners will know what I mean ...
So my client sent me three or four photos of Vinnie and I chose one to base the mosaic on - see below.

As the mosaic was for outside, I used cement board as my backing and porcelain tiles.  I am lucky enough to have found a supplier with a wide selection of colours to choose from (www.mosaictrader.co.uk)
Now came the tricky bit ... I started with drawing a design of Vinnie and checked with my clients that I had captured the essence of Vinnie well enough.

I started with the dark brown defining tiles first, and then, as you can see above, started to build up the other shades of his fur, using the colour and shapes of the tiles to show his front legs, undercarriage etc.

I always leave the face until last, as it is the most difficult part to get right. It takes a lot of trial and error, but finally I was happy it was as good as it could be, as close to Vinnie as possible.

As Vinnie was quite long and thin in the mosaic, I decided to put a frame around it to finish it off, before doing the background.

I made the tile pieces quite big for the background, to have as much colour as possible and not detract from the detail of Vinnie.  Then finally the grouting, and here is the finished article!

It was a tricky commission, but I am very pleased with the result and thankfully so are my clients - here is what they said - 
'Just to let you know I received the package today and it arrived safely it is amazing thank you so much for doing the mosaic 
Our Vinnie is back home and we have something lovely to look at every day
Thank you'

Until next time, and thank you for reading,
Felicity x