Jean-Marie Paints Pets

Daphne, Alabama

Announcement    Jean-Marie McDonnell is known for her custom dog and cat portraits painted in oil and huge, fun abstract paintings in acrylic. Her work is found along the Central Gulf Coast and on the Internet through Etsy, Pinterest and Wordpress Blogs.


Jean-Marie McDonnell is known for her custom dog and cat portraits painted in oil and huge, fun abstract paintings in acrylic. Her work is found along the Central Gulf Coast and on the Internet through Etsy, Pinterest and Wordpress Blogs.


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Jean-Marie McDonnell

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Jean-Marie McDonnell

About NotMatisse

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On Etsy since 2013

An Incredible Journey

I was a journalist before I was an artist so writing little essays about the dogs I paint is fun for me. I remember a clothing catalog called Traveler Smith that had essays about the clothing it sold and sent people on an imaginary, magical journey to far away places with each purchase. The doggie bios can take you to the heart and soul to the deep connections between the dogs and their humans.

The story surrounding my interest in dogs involves every aspect of childhood love for dogs, my interest in shelter animals, my switch to oils after years of using acrylics and even the very ownership of my property.

First about painting the dogs. Kiefer at Page and Palette in Fairhope gave me a deal on water mixable oils. I had wanted to use oils...I love the buttery consistency, but I hated the idea of using toxic solvents to clean my brushes. Kiefer's offer gave me an opportunity to try a new medium.

Mike, the director at The Haven for Animals, encouraged me to paint during an adoption event held the same weekend as an art festival. A woman who adopted a little shih tzu asked me to paint all nine of her rescues. Another family had me paint a pair of Lhaso Apsos (Katrina rescues), an elderly Australian Shepherd and tabby cat for her grandmother and Prissy, a Yorkie for the other grandmother. That brought me to 14 commissions for the event.

I went to some adoption events in Mobile -- Cinco de Spayo, where I painted a little chihuahua and a mastiff, both of which have since been adopted. I took all those paintings to Art in the Park in Foley and took Best of Show, which brought with it a thousand dollar award. That all took place in less than two months.

In the next two months (this was 2012) someone wanted to license my work and I had two shows in Mobile. I had to borrow the commissions to have enough work at the Host Gallery and I painted a new piece I called "You Threw Out My Tennis Ball?" for The Mobile Arts Council's "Dog Days of Summer" fundraiser.

The Garage Studio in Point Clear (Amanda, Bill and staff) has encouraged me to keep painting and kept the money flowing. The Garage is an art deco building a mile south of The Grand Hotel on Scenic 98. It is home to a shop with funky, unique gifts and great art. As a painter, my money has been in painting on huge canvases with big brushes and lots of fast drying acrylic paint. Often my pieces sell while they are still wet. Much of the time, I don't even get to meet the people who buy my art.

The best part of painting the dogs is working one-on-one with my clients and delivering the piece. I have had clients cry, dance and jump up and down upon delivery. I don't think I could have pleased them more if I had delivered a baby, their baby, and in some ways I guess I have. Most people who order pet portraits love their four-legged companions as family.

The little essays associated with my pet portraits are true. Very few of the samples are actually available except those of the shelter dogs and of course I will paint another shelter dog and tell their story when those sell.

Thank you for visiting my Etsy shop. I look forward to meeting you.

Shop members

  • Jean-Marie McDonnell

    Owner, Award-winning Artist And Writer

    M.A. University of Missouri School of Journalism; B.A. Eckerd College

  • Little Girl


    Studio dog. Fired first day after jumping into blue paint. Promoted to Agent and Muse.

Shop policies

Last updated on January 14, 2014
Welcome to my Etsy Shop! I paint almost every day. Usually I paint on canvas with acrylics. I enjoy painting with big brushes and lots of paint. People tell me they like my brushwork, that the paintings seem joyful and inspired.

I also paint pet portraits in oil. I started painting dogs for a shelter at one of its adoption events. One of my first customers asked me to paint all nine of her rescues! That was in 2012. That same year I took Best of Show at The Foley Performing Arts Center.

Accepted payment methods

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Accepts Etsy Gift Cards and Etsy Credits
Returns and exchanges
People who buy art, buy art because they love it. They will change the color of their couch and repaint the walls for a piece they love. One thing that can't be changed is the size of the wall relative to the size of the piece, so please measure carefully.

Sometimes a piece doesn't work despite the most careful consideration. How do you know if the shoe fits if you don't try it on? So my return policies are fairly liberal -- not as liberal as Zappos, because me or my workers have spent a good part of the day making a custom box to ship it out. So what to do? If the piece doesn't work, return it in the same box within three weeks. You pay for return shipping. All work going and coming should be insured with a tracking number.
Down payment is appreciated, but not required before the start of the protect. Payment is expected upon final approval and before shipment. PayPal or personal check accepted. Make checks payable to Jean-Marie McDonnell, and mail to P.O. Box 57, Daphne, Al 36526. Will ship when dry. Allow up to 10 days for shipment of oils.
Free shipping on stretched items measuring 20x30 inches or less; also on rolled items of any dimension. Larger stretched items are shipped at cost. Please check shipping costs before purchase. Items within Mobile or Baldwin Counties or along the Mississippi Gulf Coast may be delivered for a flat fee of $35 upon request.
Additional policies and FAQs
Custom orders accepted. I will match colors if you email or mail me a fabric sample. I will give you a quote and shipping information based on the project's size.