This is one of a series of eight miniature portraits of
sheep which were inspired by photographs taken at an auction where they were
destined for the slaughterhouse the same day (14 February this year). The
photos were taken by @Helen.ara (Instagram) while she was bearing witness for
them and countless others who are routinely killed at a fraction of their
natural lifespan because they have the misfortune to be born as animals we
value for their body parts rather than their companionship.
If they were dogs or cats they would likely have been much loved animals that I may even have been commissioned to paint portraits of, so after seeing Helen's photos and with her permission, I decided to do just that because these beautiful faces deserve to be remembered too and I will donate 50% of the sale price to @thefarmanimalsanctuary, based in Worcestershire, UK, (www.thefarmanimalsanctuary.co.uk) where luckier animals will get to live out their natural lifespan in comfort and safety. They are currently in need of donations to rebuild some of the animals enclosures and shelters damaged in the winter weather.
Of course this sheep had only an anonymous number to identify her but the name Emily came into my head as I was painting her and her message is to 'me too' because while it is about time woman spoke out about the exploitation we've faced in every walk of life for so long, surely there isn't any one group more exploited in every imaginable way than farmed animals?
The portrait is painted in acrylic ink and paint on canvas
measuring 10 x 10cm (approx 4x4 inches) and comes framed in a natural pine deep box
frame measuring 19 x 19cm. (Please note I removed the glass from the frame only
while taking the photo to avoid reflections).
If you like my art and would like to know when new paintings are available or to find out what goes on behind the scenes in my art studio then why not follow me on Instagram where I post daily (@Art.By.Nicola.McLean).