Ivins artist offers pet portraits to last forever – St George News

IVINS —When a graphic designer decided to pursue her love of art and pets, she started a pet portrait hand-painting business, and off she went, they’re good.

Darlene Dubé sits next to her custom hand-painted pet portraits, Ivins, Utah, July 13, 2022 |  Photo by Jessi Bang, St. George News
Darlene Dubé sits next to her custom hand-painted pet portraits, Ivins, Utah, July 13, 2022 | Photo by Jessi Bang, St. George News

Originally from New York, Darlene Dubé said he went to art school in midtown Manhattan, where he majored in children’s book illustrations. After art school, she worked as a graphic designer for General Mills as one of the only women on staff. She moved to a graphic design studio in California for three years and then finished her degree in California as a department head at an advertising agency, where she stayed for 13 years.

when she moved to Kennewick, Washington, Dubé said he worked in Nordstrom’s production department, where he created newspapers, catalogs and other marketing materials. During his time there, he began to computerize his artwork. He then found a pet store in Bellevue, Washington, that advertised his pet portraits and even shipped their products to customers.

“I love animals,” he said. “I have always had animals in my life when I was a child. So I made the transfer, and therefore today.”

From Washington State to Washington County, Dubé said she was drawn to the hiking opportunities. She has been doing pet portraits since 2006 and has lived in Ivins for three months.

Pet portrait created by Darlene Dubé shown, location and date unspecified |  Photo courtesy of Darlene Dubé, St. George News
Pet portrait created by Darlene Dubé shown, location and date unspecified | Photo courtesy of Darlene Dubé, St. George News

“I love sitting with animals and their owners. It allows me to capture the personality of the dog and share the story of him through art,” said Dubé.

Over the years, Dubé said he has done many unique portraits of pets, including a dog and Main coon cat together. Once, there was a cat in his neighborhood that was left behind after a move. As she went door to door to find out which house the cat came from, she knocked on a door and met his dog, Bear.

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“We looked at each other as if we knew each other and I was so taken with him that 10 minutes later, I came back and said I just had to paint his dog,” Dubé said.

Another interesting experience happened when he ran into a woman at one of the local print shops in town while she was printing her art. Dubé said the woman became enthused by how amazing the portraits of her were and she began to tell him about her difficult life situation and how she was about to be kicked out of her apartment due to her unemployment.

A portrait of Dubé's neighbor Bear's dog is displayed, Ivins, Utah, July 13, 2022 |  Photo by Jessi Bang, St. George News
A portrait of Dubé’s neighbor Bear’s dog is displayed, Ivins, Utah, July 13, 2022 | Photo by Jessi Bang, St. George News

They exchanged numbers, and about a month later, she called and said she wanted to get her dog painted for free.

“I could be busy every day of the week, I just have a feeling, because my heart is in the right place. When I meet people, they can see that,” Dubé said.

With a turnaround time of about two weeks, Dubé said pet portrait rates run around $175 for anything from poster stamp size to a full 12-by-18 size. He also offers larger sizes and canvases at additional cost. The portraits are hand-painted on a tablet screen with a brush and then printed on UV-protected paper.

For more information and to order a pet portrait, email Darlene Dubé or call her at 206-571-9379.

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