Portraits by Colleen http://portraitsbycolleen.com One of a kind portraits Fri, 21 Aug 2015 00:18:50 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.4.8 A Breed a …… Border Collie http://portraitsbycolleen.com/a-breed-a-border-collie/ http://portraitsbycolleen.com/a-breed-a-border-collie/#respond Fri, 21 Aug 2015 00:17:58 +0000 http://portraitsbycolleen.com/?p=3785 A Breed ..every so often : BORDER COLLIE From the BorderCollie.org website The Border Collie was developed by shepherds on the English-Scottish border to herd sheep. The breed spread throughout the United Kingdom and then throughout the world. Unlike most dog breeds, it continues to be bred, used and valued for its original purpose–herding livestock. …
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A Breed ..every so often : BORDER COLLIE

From the BorderCollie.org website

The Border Collie was developed by shepherds on the English-Scottish border to herd sheep. The breed spread throughout the United Kingdom and then throughout the world. Unlike most dog breeds, it continues to be bred, used and valued for its original purpose--herding livestock. Gradually, because a herding dog is necessarily highly intelligent, athletic and responsive, it came to be used and valued for all the other things dogs can do--e.g., obedience, agility, frisbee, service, search & rescue, and companionship. All but one, that is--prior to 1995 there was no tradition in this country of showing Border Collies in dog shows, or breeding them to look a certain way. They were bred and valued for their abilities, not their appearance.

Because the Border Collie is a performance dog and not a show dog, Border Collie owners over the years have not wanted the breed to be recognized by the AKC and bred for show. As with other breeds not recognized by the AKC, the Border Collie could be entered in AKC-sanctioned obedience and tracking trials through the granting of Indefinite Listing Privileges (ILP) by the AKC. For more than forty years, the Border Collie was a member of the so-called Miscellaneous Class of dogs who were eligible for this type of showing, and many, many Border Collies received ILP numbers and achieved distinction in obedience and tracking. During those years, several AKC presidents and directors publicly stated that the Border Collie was not appropriate for the show ring because of its focus on performance and its lack of physical standardization.

The breed is now recognized by the AKC

 

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The Zoo http://portraitsbycolleen.com/the-zoo/ http://portraitsbycolleen.com/the-zoo/#respond Thu, 28 May 2015 19:56:11 +0000 http://portraitsbycolleen.com/?p=3757   Took a trip to the Philadelphia Zoo today with the hopes of more closely observing the build of a lion. It was hot and most of the animals were taking it easy, lying about, resting or eating. Although I applaud the zoo for attempting to make the wild known to urban communities (hopefully inspiring …
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Took a trip to the Philadelphia Zoo today with the hopes of more closely observing the build of a lion. It was hot and most of the animals were taking it easy, lying about, resting or eating. Although I applaud the zoo for attempting to make the wild known to urban communities (hopefully inspiring future conservationists), I couldn't help but feel some sadness as I peered at these creatures through the smudge covered glass.

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A Breed a Week: Mastiff http://portraitsbycolleen.com/a-breed-a-week-mastiff/ http://portraitsbycolleen.com/a-breed-a-week-mastiff/#respond Thu, 09 Apr 2015 18:43:18 +0000 http://portraitsbycolleen.com/?p=3739 A Breed a Week:  MASTIFF From the Complete Dog Book, a publication of the American Kennel Club, copyright 1985 The breed commonly called “Mastiff” in English speaking countries is more properly described as the Old English Mastiff. It is a giant short-haired dog, with heavy head and short muzzle, which has been bred in England …
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A Breed a Week:  MASTIFF

From the Complete Dog Book, a publication of the American Kennel Club, copyright 1985

The breed commonly called "Mastiff" in English speaking countries is more properly described as the Old English Mastiff. It is a giant short-haired dog, with heavy head and short muzzle, which has been bred in England for over two thousand years as a watchdog. The term "mastiff" describes a group of giant varieties of dog rather than a single breed. They are supposed to have originated in Asia.

Cassel finds drawings on Egyptian monuments of typical Mastiffs dating about 3000 B.C. In literature, the earliest reference is in Chinese about 1121 B.C. So far as the Mastiff is concerned, it has a longer history than most. Caesar describes them in his account of invading Britain in 55 B.C., when they fought beside their masters against the Roman legions with such courage and power as to make a great impression. Soon afterward we find several different accounts of the huge British fighting dogs brought back to Rome where they defeated all other varieties in combat at the Circus. They were also matched against human gladiators as well as against bulls, bears, lions, and tigers.

Dogfighting and animal-baiting were made illegal in England in 1835, but for twenty years longer the law was little obeyed.

While the Mastiff was always in front rank as a fighting dog, this does not account for his popularity in England for two thousand years. It was as bandogs, or tiedogs (tied by day but loose at night) that they were found everywhere. In fact, long ago, keeping of these Mastiffs was compulsory for the peasants. During Anglo-Saxon times there had to be kept at least one Mastiff for each two villeins (**not to be confused with villain). By this means wolves and other savage game were kept under control. They were also used in hunting packs by the nobility. It was as protectors of the home, however, that they were most used, and probably as a result of centuries of such service the Mastiff has acquired unique traits as a family dog.

General Character and Symmetry - Large, massive, symmetrical and well knit frame. A combination of grandeur and good nature, courage and docility.

 

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A Breed a Week: Saluki http://portraitsbycolleen.com/a-breed-a-week-saluki/ http://portraitsbycolleen.com/a-breed-a-week-saluki/#respond Tue, 31 Mar 2015 15:36:17 +0000 http://portraitsbycolleen.com/?p=3729 A Breed a Week:  SALUKI From the Complete Dog Book, a publication of the American Kennel Club, copyright 1985 The Saluki, royal dog of Egypt, is perhaps the oldest known breed of domesticated dog, identified by some historians as “a distinct breed and type as long ago as 329 B.C. when Alexander the Great invaded …
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A Breed a Week:  SALUKI

From the Complete Dog Book, a publication of the American Kennel Club, copyright 1985

The Saluki, royal dog of Egypt, is perhaps the oldest known breed of domesticated dog, identified by some historians as "a distinct breed and type as long ago as 329 B.C. when Alexander the Great invaded India." He is said to be as old as the earliest known civilization, the claim being based on the fact that the hounds shown on the earliest carvings look more like Salukis than any other breed: they have a Greyhound body with feathered ears, tail, and legs. Exactly the same hound appears on the Egyptian tombs of 2100 B.C. and more recent excavation of the still older Sumerian empire, estimated at 7000-6000 B.C., have produced carvings of striking resemblance to the Saluki.

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Having tremendous speed, the Saluki was used by the Arabs principally in bringing down the gazelle. It is recorded that the Pharaohs rode to the chase with their hawks on their wrists and Salukis on the lead. We also believe the Saluki was used on jackals, foxes, and hares. A cut published in 1852 shows a wild boar hunt in Algeria with Salukis tackling the boar.

On his native heath the Saluki gets no pampering. He lives hard, and it is a case of survival of the fittest -  one reason for his strong constitution and sturdy frame, enabling him to stand any climate in unheated kennels. His feet are hard and firm, and the hair between the toes is a great protection. In all his running and dodging over the roughest kind of ground and rocky country, he never damages pads or toes.

His beauty is that of the thoroughbred horse; grace and symmetry of form; clean cut and graceful; short silky hair except on the ears, legs and tail; slender, well muscled neck, shoulders, and thighs; arched loins; long tail carried naturally in a curve with silky hair hanging from the underside; the arched toes; the rather long head with deep, far seeing eyes-an expression of dignity mixed with gentleness.

Salukis come in a wide variety of colors, including white, cream, fawn, golden, red, grizzle and tan, tri-color (white, black and tan), and black and tan. In disposition he shows great attachment to his master. He is affectionate without being demonstrative, a good watchdog, but not aggressive.

 

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A Breed a Week: Brittany http://portraitsbycolleen.com/a-breed-a-week-brittany/ http://portraitsbycolleen.com/a-breed-a-week-brittany/#respond Thu, 12 Mar 2015 17:37:43 +0000 http://portraitsbycolleen.com/?p=3721 A Breed A Week: BRITTANY From the Complete Dog Book, a publication of the American Kennel Club, copyright 1985 “Named for the French province in which it originated, the Brittany was, until September 1982, registered by the American Kennel Club as the Brittany Spaniel. Although until then called a spaniel, in its manner of working …
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A Breed A Week: BRITTANY

From the Complete Dog Book, a publication of the American Kennel Club, copyright 1985

"Named for the French province in which it originated, the Brittany was, until September 1982, registered by the American Kennel Club as the Brittany Spaniel. Although until then called a spaniel, in its manner of working game the Brittany is setterlike. In appearance it is smaller than the setters but leggier than the spaniels, with a short tail and a characteristic high ear set.

While it is generally conceded that the basic stock for all bird dogs is the same, most of the actual facts concerning the development and spread of the various breeds are lost in antiquity. Early written records are confusing. Dogs are referred to as being of Bretagne or Brittania, which may have referred to the British Isles rather than the French province, for Brittany was called Armorique until the 5th century. Oppian, who lived about 150 A.D. wrote of the uncivilized people of Brittany (or Britain?) and reported that their dogs' scenting ability surpassed all others, a characteristic many present day Brittanys retain.

The first accurate records to pinpoint the actual Brittany type dog are the paintings and tapestries of the 17th century. The frequency with which this type appears suggests it was fairly common. Oudry (1686-1745) shows a liver and white dog pointing partridge and this same type of dog is common in the Flemish paintings of the school of Jan Steen.

The Brittany's steady gain in popularity in the United States has been due to its merits as a shooting dog. Its smaller size and natural proclivity for hunting  close fill the need of the modern American bird hunter. Its superb nose and desire to please are two of its major assets. Its size makes it better adapted to city living than some of the larger bird dogs, and its close range makes it more adaptable to today's hunting areas, crisscrossed with numerous roads and fences.

A happy, well adjusted Brittany is one that gets a  chance to hunt. Few Brittanys have been raised strictly as house pets and never used for hunting. Friendly in disposition and quite retractable, the Brittany may be expected to absorb training more easily than some of the other pointing breeds because of an inborn desire to please its master.

 

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A Breed a Week : Basset Hound http://portraitsbycolleen.com/a-breed-a-week/ http://portraitsbycolleen.com/a-breed-a-week/#respond Wed, 04 Mar 2015 03:01:46 +0000 http://portraitsbycolleen.com/?p=3715 BASSET HOUND From the Complete Dog Book, a publication of the American Kennel Club, copyright 1985 “Originally of French lineage, the Basset has flourished for centuries in Europe, primarily in France and Belgium, where it was used chiefly for the slow trailing of rabbits, hares, deer and any other game that can be trailed on …
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BASSET HOUND

From the Complete Dog Book, a publication of the American Kennel Club, copyright 1985

"Originally of French lineage, the Basset has flourished for centuries in Europe, primarily in France and Belgium, where it was used chiefly for the slow trailing of rabbits, hares, deer and any other game that can be trailed on foot or taken to ground.

It is thought that the friars of the French Abbey of St. Hubert were instrumental in selective breeding from various other strains of French hounds to produce a lower set, hence slower moving dog which could be followed on foot. The word "Basset" derived from the French adjective bas means a "low thing" or "a dwarf." Since hunting was a classic sport in medieval France, it is not surprising that many of the thoroughly efficient small hounds found their way into the kennels of the aristocracy, only to be dispersed with the changing life style brought on by the Revolution.

The Basset is a sturdy, accurate trailer; his tongue is loud and distinctive. The shortness of his legs and his tight, close coat make him particularly useful in dense cover. In trailing ability, the accuracy of his nose makes him second only to the Bloodhound. His slow going ways and appealing clownish appearance belie great intelligence.

Gentle in disposition, the Basset is agreeable to hunting in packs as well as singly. Medium as to size, loyal and devoted to his master and family, not requiring extensive coat care or trimming, considered an "easy keeper" - all makes the Basset an ideal family pet and housedog.

In general appearance the Basset Hound is a long low dog, heavier in bone than any other breed. His most distinctive feature is his head, which is long and narrow in proportion to its length. His topskull is well domed with a noticeable occipital protuberance. The skin over the head is loose and falls readily into brow wrinkles when the head is lowered. The muzzle is deep with prominent flews and dewlap. The ears are long and lowset, for when the nose is put to the ground the ears help cup the scent in trailing. The Basset's eyes are dark, soulful and full of expression. The whole of the head and expression should convey dignity and elegance. While its movement is deliberate, it is in no sense clumsy. In temperament it is mild, never sharp or timid. It is capable of great endurance in the field and is extreme in its devotion.

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A Breed a Day: Rottweiler http://portraitsbycolleen.com/a-breed-a-day-rottweiler/ http://portraitsbycolleen.com/a-breed-a-day-rottweiler/#respond Thu, 26 Feb 2015 23:02:54 +0000 http://portraitsbycolleen.com/?p=3708 ROTTWEILER From: The Complete Dog Book, a publication of the American Kennel Club, copyright 1985 “Apparently, there is no documented record of the origins of the Rottweiler. It is likely, however, that he is descended from one of the drover dogs indigenous to ancient Rome. The drover dog has been described by various accredited sources …
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ROTTWEILER

From: The Complete Dog Book, a publication of the American Kennel Club, copyright 1985

"Apparently, there is no documented record of the origins of the Rottweiler. It is likely, however, that he is descended from one of the drover dogs indigenous to ancient Rome. The drover dog has been described by various accredited sources as having been of the Mastiff type- a dependable, rugged, willing worker, possessed of great intelligence and a strong guarding instinct.

The transition from Roman herding dog to the dog we know today as the Rottweiler can be attributed to the ambitions of the Roman Emperors to conquer Europe. Very large armies were required for these expeditions and the logistics of feeding that number of men became a major consideration. No means of refrigeration existed which meant that the meat for the soldiers had to accompany the troops "on the hoof." The services of a dog capable of keeping the herd intact during the long march were needed. The above described "Mastiff type" was admirably suited to both that job and the additional responsibility of guarding the supply dumps at night.

About 700 A.D. the local Duke ordered a Christian church built on the site of the former Roman Baths. Excavations unearthed the red tiles of Roman villas. To distinguish the town from others, it was then named "das Rote Wil" (the red tile).

Rottweil's dominance as a cultural and trade center increased unabated and in the middle of the 12th Century further fame and fortune came to it. Increased commerce in cattle resulted in butchers concentrated in the area and inevitably, more dogs were needed to drive the cattle to and from the markets.

In the 19th Century, the driving of cattle was outlawed and the donkey and the railroad replaced the dog cart so the Rottweiler Metzgerhund (butcher dog), as he came to be called, fell on hard times. The number of Rottweilers declined so radically that in 1882 the dog show in Heilbronn, Germany reported just one poor example of the breed.

General Appearance - the ideal Rottweiler is a large, robust and powerful dog, black with clearly defined rust markings. His compact build denotes great strength, agility and endurance.

 

 

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A Breed a Day: Pointer http://portraitsbycolleen.com/a-breed-a-day-pointer/ http://portraitsbycolleen.com/a-breed-a-day-pointer/#respond Wed, 25 Feb 2015 23:13:25 +0000 http://portraitsbycolleen.com/?p=3701 The POINTER According to The Complete Dog Book, an official publication of the American Kennel Club, 17th Edition, published in 1985: “The first Pointers appeared in England about 1650, some years before the era of wing-shooting guns, and the use to which they were put is interesting. Coursing with Greyhounds was a favorite sport of …
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The POINTER

According to The Complete Dog Book, an official publication of the American Kennel Club, 17th Edition, published in 1985:

"The first Pointers appeared in England about 1650, some years before the era of wing-shooting guns, and the use to which they were put is interesting. Coursing with Greyhounds was a favorite sport of those times and the earliest accounts of Pointers reveal that they were taken afield to locate and point hares.....But at least by 1711, wing shooting had come into vogue and, from that day on, "shorthair" has been considered by the majority of sportsmen the equal, if not superior, of any of the gun dogs.

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As for the Pointer's lineage, there is no question that the Foxhound, Greyhound and Bloodhound all had a share in its making.

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Remarkable stories are to be found in British sporting papers of the early 19th century, relating the prodigies performed by certain English Pointers of a former day. Col. Thornton's Pluto and Juno, for example, are said to have held a point on a covey of partridges for an hour and a quarter by the watch.

During the 19th century the English Pointer was repeatedly crossed with the various setters as they came into existence and favor. This, as it seems, was partly to improve his disposition, for an old-time writer, commenting on the breed says: "They have a ferocity of temper which will not submit to correction or discipline, unless taken in hand very young."

General Appearence: The Pointer is bred primarily for sport afield; he should unmistakably look and act the part. The ideal specimen gives the immediate impression of compact power and agile grace; the head noble, proudly carried; the expression intelligent and alert; the muscular body bespeaking both staying power and dash. Here is an animal whose every movement shows him to be wide-awake, hard-driving hunting dog possessing stamina, courage, and the desire to go. And in his expression are the loyalty and devotion of a true friend of man"

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One Year http://portraitsbycolleen.com/one-year/ http://portraitsbycolleen.com/one-year/#respond Tue, 15 Apr 2014 13:58:04 +0000 http://portraitsbycolleen.com/?p=3657   It has been one year since I was knee deep in this sculpture.  Time is such a curious measurement.  So much has happened and yet it feels like a flash. About to begin work on another life sized sculpture, this time of a running bear made of concrete.  I have worked with the material …
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It has been one year since I was knee deep in this sculpture.  Time is such a curious measurement.  So much has happened and yet it feels like a flash.

About to begin work on another life sized sculpture, this time of a running bear made of concrete.  I have worked with the material before but not directly.  I am both excited and anxious to see how it goes.

 

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Robinson in the snow: Jan 2014 http://portraitsbycolleen.com/robinson-in-the-snow-jan-2014/ http://portraitsbycolleen.com/robinson-in-the-snow-jan-2014/#respond Thu, 23 Jan 2014 11:44:31 +0000 http://portraitsbycolleen.com/?p=3603 The post Robinson in the snow: Jan 2014 appeared first on Portraits by Colleen.

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