Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Lulu in Living Color

7" X 5" colored pen

I don’t think my color portrait of Lulu is destined to appear in the book I’ve illustrated – “All My Dogs: A Life” by Bill Henderson. So I’ll give you a sneak preview of Bill’s favorite. Bill thinks Lulu was a mismatched mixed breed: “She was about eighty-five pounds of shagginess. Perhaps a committee had pieced her together–a German shepherd face, floppy dreadlocked Afghan ears, a golden retriever body. Her face and muzzle said ferocious, her eyes indicated kind, her tail wagged like a puppy’s for friend and stranger alike.”

Lulu in Life

I think Lulu may have been a noble Leonberger, a German water dog created by Mayor Heinrich Essig of Leonberg in the 1800’s by crossing Newfoundlands with St. Bernards. Whatever flavor Lulu was, she was Bill’s love. “I have known few animals,” he writes, “–and fewer humans–with such a natural, unself-conscious dignity. She accepted me and I her with no question. We walked and thought in tandem.”

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