I was asked to create a painting for a birthday gift. It would somehow incorporate a new puppy in the family with one they had lost. What a challenge! But this is what I came up with. Cisco, a big beautiful black lab passed away in 2015. Devastating for the family. And recently they got a beautiful red lab puppy. So I tried to convey with Cisco a certain ethereal or spirit like look by blending the background right into the highlights on his face, maybe as if he was already safe and sound in Heaven, and watching over us. But then Red is at the beginning of his journey here on earth. So I wanted to convey enthusiasm and "puppyhood". I was thrilled to watch them open it and see how they were touched!