Contextual Research CPS 3302 Studio Practice 3301 Year 3

Contextual Post – Pat Saunders-White

Artist website –

Pat Saunders-White is a fine artist who enjoys working with clients to create pet portraits. She enjoys making art that makes people happy. By focusing on composition and colour, she tries to capture more than just the physical aspects of the animals. She uses a lot of contrast, black lines and whimsical cropping to draw in the viewer.

I feel that the subject matter of this painting relates a lot to my project as I have painted a lot of sheep and so I felt researching this artist was relevant. Although I wouldn’t expect the colours of the sheep and the red/blue background to work, the black outline breaks the two things apart and makes it effective. I love how the texture of the wool contrasts with the solid background colours. Though abstract it is still easy to identify the subject matter.

’The Four Clucks’ – Pat Saunders-White, acrylic on canvas

The subject matter of chickens for this painting was selected by one of Pat Saunders-White’s students. I love how this painting looks like an abstract drawing as it is really simple but the arrangement, composition and colours used work well. The fact the painting is a diptych also works well as it allows the viewer to spend more time looking and wondering why this decision was made.

‘Green Fence’ – Pat Saunders-White, acrylic on canvas

I feel that this painting resonates really well with my project but this painting is more of an abstract take on it which works really well. I would like to further explore experimenting with colours in my own work to hopefully achieve something similar as it really works and draws in the viewer as the colours work well together yet contrast with the black outlines.

‘Cold Hands’ – Pat Saunders-White, acrylic on canvas

I love the colours used in this piece as they are very bright and work well with the dark outline. Though simple, the irregular shapes in this painting adds to the whimsical vibe and adds more to the overall effect. The eyes make the cow look quite crazy which I find humorous. Though a different outcome, this painting initially reminded me of Andy Warhol’s serial cow imagery which is an interesting link.

How Pat Saunders-White’s work is influencing my project:

In particular, I am interested in Pat Saunders-White’s use of colour to explore animals and bring them to life. The colours used are often bright and abstract which makes them very eye-catching and evokes emotion from the viewers, with the colours being used to possibly portray how the animal is feeling or to show how amazing animals are.

The works above, particularly the last two of the donkeys and the cow in bright colours remind me of my work a lot in terms of animals being in enclosures/captivity and the animals making direct eye contact with the viewer. As this creates a lot of emotion, it is perfect to inform my decisions going forward and could help me to be more decisive about my colour choices rather than being random.

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