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November 2009

October 2009

More Dogs on Posts!

I have been making short musical slideshows on the Danger Dogs lately, and have come across some mighty fine 'Beware of Dog' signposts from Nepal.  


I have over 200 of these and I'd like to make them the subject of my next book.


This sign is on it's last legs.   I believe that I have seen other signposts by this same artist.  


I think that this is the same artist as above.   They are both in the Jorpati area of the Kathmandu Valley.


Another oldie but goodie.   The laundry hung like prayer flags, the barbed wire...Nepal all the way.


This is not technically a signboard, but I just have to love the double Danger Dogs warning.   No way I'd trespass there.    The license plate on the motorcycle is painted by a signboard painter.   That is what my artists do on a daily business.  

Think about the holidays coming up.   You can order a Danger Dog (or any type of pet) and give 3 artists in Nepal work!   You don't even have to pay up front.   If, for some reason you are not happy with one of your pet's paintings, you don't have to pay.  

These artists need work.   Nepal is the 12th poorest country in the world.   These painters have no back up work they can do.   Digital signs are changing their lives, eating into their businesses.   Hand-painted signboards are being replaced and these artists have no means to keep up.   This is traditionally a family business, and many times, the artist does not write the lettering.   That is left to someone else who has had a different education.   

A portion of all Danger Dog proceeds go to charities all around the world.  

I will be going to Nepal in November, returning early December in time to ship holiday orders.   Do you know a pet lover who collects art that would love a gift that made a difference to 3 artists' lives?   Take that stealth photo of a loved one's pet, send it to me, tell me what you'd like it to say, then sit back and wait.   3 artists will treat you to their interpretation of your pet.   Pay only if you like one of them.

Contact me at for more information.   Go to too!   I'm happy to answer any question.

A Chocolate Labrador Retreiver named Millie

Millie is one of the most zen Chocolate Labs ever.   As such, she has inspired many Enlightened Dog portraits.  
Starting with:

 Amar.chocolate lab

Amar Shrestha loves a sleeping pet.   The details and balance in this painting are quite extraordinary.   The green hues perfectly complement Millie Vartan's zen calm.    This is the only portrait I have had made from this particular photo and was purchased as a gift for Millie's owner.

 Millie Chocolate lab by Megh Raj 

Again, here is Millie the Chocolate Lab by Megh Raj.    This one is photo-realistic and still has the chalk plumb lines used for the lettering.   Available at this time.


Shiva's portrait of Millie has a completely different feel.   Here she is primitive.   The lettering is in Tibetan and says:   "Brilliant dog here, is here.   Do you have dog?   Have none."    I had asked for a sample of Tibetan lettering from a monk in Pokhara.   Tibetans consider dogs to be reincarnated lamas (holy men) and routinely refer to them as brilliant.   He wrote all this in Tibetan, and I had asked Shiva to please only write the first phrase.   Also, he was to include the phrase 'Enlightened Dog' in English.    This painting of Millie is also available.


Sanjib Rana painted this soulful Millie in her chair.    Looking a bit like a wise professor in this portrait, Sanjib caught her soulful gaze.   Available.


This portrait by Amar was also gifted to Millie's owner.


Millie as seen by Hari Timsina.   Hari T's colorful take on Millie is available.


Dilip Niroj's version of the lovely Millie.   Available.

Also available is this version of Millie by Nara.


I had to see what Sabala would do with Millie.    I have made so many of Millie because she is a textbook example of a chocolate lab and it is such a great photo.    The Danger Dog project needs to have a couple of sample dogs so that collectors can see what many, many artists can do with the same photo in order to illustrate the artists' various styles.   Available.

This is a classic by Punam.   My dentist bought this one.   First time I ever made money at the Dentists!

I'll be returning to Nepal soon to make more of these paintings on metal.   Please send me a photo of your pet and I will give it to at least 3 different artists, insuring that you will like at least one of the portraits made of your pet and giving much-needed work to these struggling signpost artists in Nepal.   You pay only after choosing which portrait you prefer.   Satisfaction guaranteed.

Please contact me at for more information, or go to my website to see more of these fabulous Danger Dogs.  

And if you'd like to purchase one of these spectacular portraits of Millie, please contact me at  

Zen Dogs and Cats! Pugnacious Kitties!

Zen Dogs and Zen Cats have become a Nepal Dog staple.


This cute gray cat is by Sabala.   His owner insists that he is indeed a Zen Cat, getting along with all of her dogs and keeping his dignity intact at the same time.


Kahuna the Zen Pug by Shree is a friend of the above Zen Cat.


This Pugnacious Kitty is a Tonkinese living in London.   Lula has a lot to fight about as he is a Tom named Lula.    Not named by Johnny Cash, this cat was late to drop his balls and was named before that momentous event.   He is not wearing blue lingerie, but is propped against his owner's socks.   Painting by Hari Timsina.

 Louis Poodle by Sufraj 

Louis is a Spiritual Dog, painted by Sufraj.

Sandy is a Bhakti Dog.   Bhakti means devoted in the Sanskrit language.   Painting by Sabala.

You can see these paintings at the Ghetto Gloss Gallery on Thursday, October 22 from 7 to midnight.   The gallery is located at 6109 Melrose Avenue in Hollywood (cross street Seward).    Ghetto Gloss is known for their very fun events, so if you are in the neighborhood, please stop by.  

Please email me at for more information.  

Time is running low for your holiday orders.   Send me a photo of your pet, your child, your home, your president and have them immortalized on metal.   It is the perfect personalized present, sure to make the recipient smile.  

Obama in Nepal - the Folk Art Obamas

In honor of President Obama receiving the Nobel Peace Prize this morning, I thought I'd show the few remaining Folk Art Obamas.  


Here is Sagar holding his rather older version of Barack Obama.   This was painted in November 2008, as part of a limited edition series for the Santa Monica Museum of Art.   This is the  Obama of the future.   There are even a few stray gray hairs.


This Folk Art Obama by Amar includes details such as his five o'clock shadow.  


Obama by Sufraj is lighter skinned, perhaps reflecting Sufraj's thoughts on his own skin tones.   Sufraj comments on his own photos by shaking his head and saying  'So dark.'   I remind Sufraj that it is a good thing that Obama is a man of color.   When interviewed about what he thought about painting Obama, he said that it was 'ekdam mito' - meaning that it was a very pleasing experience.  He claims that he has never made such a 'personal' painting before.   He also stated that he has never done a painting of such a powerful person as Obama.   


Govinda Kalikote's portrait of our President brings to mind the young basketball player that he once was.   Govinda insisted on painting this on plywood instead of the usual metal. 


No collection of Obama paintings would be complete without a piece after Shepherd Fairey.   In this version by Sabala, Obama looks like Martin Luther King.    I also enjoyed the misspelling of the word 'to ward'.  


Here are 3 more by Sufraj at Gracie - the shop at the Santa Monica Museum of Art.   Go to for more information.

Congratulations again to our 44th president.

I have made my reservations and will be returning to Nepal in November to order more signposts on metal.   I'll be back with the paintings in early December.

I have mostly concentrated on pets, but as you can see above, these guys can and will paint anything you can imagine -- home portraits, portraits of people, cars, children, movie posters.   If you order it, you will get it.  

To order a personalized signboard on metal from Nepal, please contact me at   You can also go to to find out more about the project.

This is a Fair Trade Art Project dedicated to promoting the endangered signboard artists of Nepal - Micro-finance through Art Patronage - appealing mostly to pet lovers who collect art and would like to make a difference to the world.

Hudson Valley Days.

Forests as far as the eye can see, the trees changing color, rushing waters...Woodstock_4

We were lucky enough to stay with Barbara and Bob, who own this spectacular waterfall rental house.   The waterfall itself is named Niobe Waterfall, after the legend of Niobe's Tears.   Here's a link to the legend.   You can find out more about renting this beauty at


This is the view from the living room.   You can hear the rushing waters.   This was early in my week-long trip.   6 days later, the leaves had started to turn their glorious shades of reds and oranges and golds, and even fuschia from time to time.


The house is so lovely, with a porch to sit and watch nature flow by.  

Full of art... Starting with an Enlightened Dog by Amar greeting guests.  


Entryway and formal dining room.  

Barbara and Bob are great hosts.   The fridge is stocked with local goodies, including eggs from local chickens.


Your host, Bob, knows and loves the area, its legends and history.   Close by are many historical sites, and the house is fully stocked with books about the area.  


Dan and I really loved the tour of the area with Bob showing us both natural and historical sites.   I can certainly see why the Hudson River Valley inspired its very own School of Art!   


This waterfall is higher than Niagara Falls!   We were on top of the falls looking down here.   I was in high heel wedgies (of course) and would not dare to get any closer to the edge.   As you can see, the fall foliage is starting to show.

Not far away was a double lake.   Lots of campsites.   We were very comfortable staying with Barbara and Bob, but those campsites looked tempting.   Too cold for Dan's blood, though, I'll bet.

Life is good.   Very good.


The view from the precipice of what was once the world's largest hotel - the Catskill Mountain House.   Built in 1823, it was reached by steam ship, then a 5-hour stagecoach ride.   The panorama is such that it seems little changed from that time, and makes one imagine that James Fenimore Cooper may have himself been inspired to write about the Last of the Mohicans from this very spot.    This was once one of the most famous views in all of America.  Postcards aplenty featured just this sight.   Find out more here.

The famous hotel fell into disrepair just before WWII and was burnt down by NY State in 1963.


It would not be the Danger Dog Blog if I did not add the 'Dog of the Day'.   This is Lefty, a 5-month-old cutie that was recently rescued by two loving lucky people.   This handsome guy is a Belgian Boxer!    His personality was even cuter than he is.

For more information about the Hudson River Valley and the WaterFall Rental, contact Barbara or Bob at: