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1st Annual Animal Portraiture Open International Juried Art Exhibition

A Sea of Snacks and Smiles, by Destiney Hett, painting of an adorable dog surrounded by smiling goldfish crackers
A Sea of Snacks and Smiles, by Destiney Hett

Congratulations to each artist whose work was accepted into Wild Heart Gallery's 1st Annual Animal Portraiture Open international juried art exhibition! Artists were asked to submit their best animal portraiture artwork. Both wild and domesticated animals were sought. Animals portraits have a long history in art. We celebrate that as well as the recent boom in pet portraiture.

It is the goal of Wild Heart Gallery to support and promote animal and wildlife artwork in a wide range of genres and styles. This exhibition does not disappoint.

Artwork for this exhibition was selected by jury based on theme, originality, technique, skill, and quality of work.

Awards: Best in Show, Best Wild Animal Portrait, Best Domesticated Animal Portrait, Overall Runner Up, Overall Honorable Mentions, Best in Category, and Special Merit Awards. More award details below.

Note: It took the judges four days to sort out the top entries. We are thrilled by the caliber of work submitted for our 1st Annual Animal Portraiture Open. Congratulations everyone!

Click on an image to enlarge it.



A Sea of Snacks and Smiles, by Destiney Hett. Painting of a dog with foreshortening. She's surrounded by floating goldfish crackers
by Destiney Hett

A Sea of Snacks and Smiles, by Destiney Hett 8 x 10 in, Oil on wood panel

From the artist, "This is an original oil painting of Storm, the smiling Pit bull. Her favorite snacks are goldfish crackers and she loves fuzzy blankets."

This portrait of Storm is satisfying combination of story, emotion, composition, and lighting that come together with a touch of Surrealism. The painting tells the viewer who this happy dog is with originality and flair that suits the subject's personality.

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Underdog, by Rebecca Findlay. Portrait in profile of an African painted dog as hunter and hunted, as shown by the evocative red paint leading from the animal's muzzle, eyes, and ears.
by Rebecca Findlay

Underdog, by Rebecca Findlay 11.7 x 16.5 in, Acrylic and tea on canvas paper

From the artist, "This artwork was inspired by the African Painted Dog. Rebecca wanted to create a strong and impactful image with the red, more expressive marks being indicative of the amount of bloodshed that is happening leading to their endangered status.For example, with human traps, diseases, and road accidents, as people occupy the Painted Dog's habitat."

Mood and message make this a portrait of not only this one specific African Painted Dog but of the situation facing the entire species.

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Congratulations to our Overall Honorable Mention winners, JJ Galloway, Kathleen Bartl, Sabra Crockett,

Shawna Hinkel, Elizaveta Lesun, Debbie Morris, Patsy Lindamood, Iebeltje van der Spoel, Bridget Davet, Phin Anibal, and Jacque Price.



Congratulations to our Best in Category winners

  • Digital Art: Elizaveta Lesun

  • Drawing and Pastels: Debbie Morris

  • Mixed Media: Michael Giannella

  • Painting: Destiney Hett

  • Photography: Shawna Hinkel

  • Printmaking: Ted Shaine

  • Sculpture: Kathleen Bartl



Congratulations to our Special Merit Award winners, Leo Lizarraga, JJ Galloway, Sherry Spencer, Patsy Lindamood, Sabra Crockett, Debbie Morris, Vidhya Srijesh, Jacque Price, Tara Nix, and Lizzie Jayne.



Congratulations to the artists included in our Selected Works section, Sherry Spencer, Leo Lizarraga, Najib Joe Hakim, Sabra Crockett, Rebecca Findlay, Elena Ansaloni, Destiney Hett, Shawna Hinkel, JJ Galloway, Debbie Morris, David Kunisch, David Garber, Lizzie Jayne, Lyn Rosenthal, Sasha Fofanova, Nancy Langston, Ted Shaine, Jacque Price, and Cathie Muschany.


Best in Show receives $50 cash award and promotion on the following: Art Base, Art Week, Wild Heart Gallery’s (WHG's) growing social media and other online media channels, WHG's eNewsletter, and WHG's home page (for duration of the exhibition).

All award recipients receive promotion on Wild Heart Gallery’s (WHG's) growing social media/other online media channels and WHG's eNewsletter and inclusion in a virtual group exhibition that lasts at least one month.

This art exhibition was juried by Sarah Soward and Sharon Eisley.



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