Author: opalpastro

The things I love the most come together in my artwork to create pieces that celebrate joy, quirkiness and beauty. I grew up in semi-rural Victoria, with big cumulous skies and lovely natural bushland. I was blessed to have many family pets and animals in our household. I loved them all, particularly the dogs and horses. They brought me friendship, humour and honesty. Art was my other childhood delight. I was seen as the arty one in my family and fully supported by my parents to pursue my creative interests. I completed my Bachelor of Fine Arts at the Monash University Gippsland Campus and thrived on the community of art school. Going into my studio everyday was a delight, but at the completion, I found myself lost and ill- equipped to pursue my art professionally. Life moved on and I fell in love with many other creative expressions which satisfied me at the time and fit better with the business of raising a family. Finally, after a long hibernation, my love for painting re-emerged. In my animal paintings, I enjoy capturing a moment or a gesture which reflects communication between the subject and its human audience. In all my paintings, I look for compositions that bring colour, beauty and a little bit playful. In my commission pieces, I aim to capture his unique personality and physical likeness in my paintings. When your portrait is hanging on your wall, I want you to recognise your special friend through his expression, the twinkle in his eye, or maybe his unique smile.

Persephone’s Portrait

I had some lovely feedback today from a happy pet portrait customer. I met Kathie at the Made with Love Markets in March and she commissioned me to paint a portrait for her daughter Alison’s birthday of Alison’s beloved pup, Persephone. Persephone is an adorable Poochon (Poodle x Bichon Frise) who is like a child […]

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It’s not a dog!

Being a Pet Portrait artist, I usually get asked to paint people’s dogs. Being a huge dog lover myself, it is always a delight to talk to my clients about their beloved fur babies. Quite often I also get to meet the dogs themselves, which is always a joy. I love painting dogs. They come […]

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Pet portrait artists meet the nicest people

Dog lovers are wonderful people

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The Kangaroo Dog Project

The Kangaroo Dog was responsible for feeding our very early settlers by bringing down kangaroos and wallabies so these early settlers could eat. So they were somewhere between a Scottish Deerhound and a Greyhound

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Dog Lovers Show Melbourne

Doing a Dog Expo for the first time is a pretty daunting experience. Many wakeful nights I have spent with my mind racing ideas around my head and fantasizing about how many hundreds of dog owners will be rushing to my store to get their custom pet portrait. I spent the seven weeks of lead […]

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One week to the Doglovers Show

  My preparations are all in order for the   next weekend at the Royal Exhibition Building. I’m really proud of myself for getting all these paintings completed early- and I’m thrilled with them as a group. It has given me time to have a break from painting and organise all the other bits and […]

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Only 14 days to the Doglovers Show

My Doglovers Preparations are almost complete! Buy your tickets online before the show and get 20% off the door price. Add promocode OPALPASTROMDLS and receive a further 10% discount. After seven very busy painting  weeks, today I finished the last piece that I am taking to the Doglovers Show as pet portrait examples. It’s been […]

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Acrylics vs oils ? – that is my question

  When I re-ignited my passion for painting a couple of years ago I started using acrylics because of the environmental impact of cleaning up after painting with oils. I always used oils at art school – lots of it. My paintings were huge (up to 2mt square) and mostly applied with a pallet knife. […]

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australian pet portrait artist rhodesian ridgeback


Commissioned memorial portrait in acrylic on canvas of Ruby the Rhodesian Ridgeback.
painted by australian artist Opal Pastro

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Max’s Portrait

I had my first solo exhibition at our local pub last July. I had been back painting only a year and a half after two decades of perusing other outlets for my creative nature. My two daughters grew up not knowing their mum could draw or paint because they barely saw me with a paint […]

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