If you’ve ever thought about immortalizing your pet with a high quality portrait, Yvonne Dagger is the artist to go to. The animal lover/activist has a knack for capturing the essence of each animal she paints, and her work is on display at The Painted Pet, the gallery that recently opened in Locust Valley. The portraits on display are mainly of at-risk shelter animals who Dagger felt “needed a voice” and decided to keep their stories alive and relevant through the oil paintings.
“I wanted to elevate them to a status of fine art, give them a chance to have something better, even if it’s just to be in a painting.”
Dagger has done work with rescue animals and is involved in the Canine Companions for Independence program. She works out of her home studio in Massapequa; a professional artist with galleries in beach communities, her skill was mainly focused on landscapes and beach scenes. It wasn’t until her beagle, Melvin, died about 10 years ago--from cancer, at the age of 7--that she began painting animals.
“It started as my way of expressing my grief,” she says.
Soon after, during her work as a volunteer, she began photographing shelter animals and painting the portraits of those up for adoption; she would then follow up at the shelters to see where they ended up.
“The conditions are so bad at some of the shelters,” she says. “I was told that they had been adopted but later found out they had been euthanized. Their eyes told a story of hope and my heart just broke for them.”
Dagger’s work has caught the attention of Martha Stewart, whose producer reached out and now features the shelter dogs and cats on her website. Ellen DeGeneres has also featured the painter’s work on her television show.
She does this to raise awareness and also for accountability. “It’s my way to contribute”
Her greater vision is to have them all on display in a museum, but is quite happy with the gallery space for now. Another aspect of the business is that pet owners can commission a painting of their beloved pets for very reasonable prices. She works off of photographs, though she does says it’s “an added bonus” if she can meet the pet to get a sense of its personality.
The Painted Pet is part of the expanded Scoopy Doo Plaza at 177 Forest Ave., adjacent to the waste removal business. Scoopy Doo owner Jim Coniglione says he is thrilled to have Dagger on board and has already referred many of his clients to her. “It’s a unique gift; it’s great to have Yvonne around to do a commission.”
They met a few months ago and it all came together. Dagger was at the Art Walk in Oyster Bay several months ago, where she met Coniglione’s assistant. He was looking to expand and thought she would be good a fit; soon, it all came together.
Working together opens up plenty of possibilities. She hopes to continue her work painting shelter animals, and Coniglione has been a strong advocate of animal cruelty laws. Dagger also works with guide dogs for wounded veterans. The two plan to collaborate on charitable works, and Coniglione says he’ll offer waste removal services as part of the effort.
About the gallery, Dagger says, “It’s another dream come true.”
To learn more or contact the artist visit www.yvonnedaggerartist.com.
Friday, 18 April 2014 00:00
It has been five years since a particularly heavy rainfall closed all the beaches in Glen Cove including Crescent Beach. As per Nassau County Department of Health standards, beaches are ordered closed after heavy rainfall because of storm water runoff that adversely affects bacteria levels at local beaches. Typically, bacteria levels subside within a day or so, allowing for the beaches to be reopened. This was not the way it went with one popular beach after the June 2009 rain storm.
“Unfortunately, this was not the case with Crescent Beach,” said Glen Cove Parks & Recreation Director, Darcy Belyea, at last Wednesday night’s public forum at Glen Cove City Hall. “Elevated levels of microbiological contamination continued to be found in the bathing water months after the heavy rain and recent samples show they are still elevated today.”
Belyea was one of a number of panelists at the public forum, which included Glen Cove Mayor Reginald Spinello, City Attorney Charles McQuair, Director of the Hempstead Harbor Protection Committee Eric Swenson and representatives from the Nassau County Department of Health.
Thursday, 17 April 2014 00:00
Movie lovers once again have a chance to see first-run films in the theater without having to travel far. Glen Cove Cinemas re-opened last week, with a ribbon-cutting ceremony and free films offered to celebrate the occasion.
“Thanks to all of the support we have here and all of you, Glen Cove is once again open for business,” said Mayor Reginald Spinello at the ceremony, held outside the theater on Thursday, April 10. “We were scheduled to open last week, and there were a few things that weren’t ready...I got a call from the theater operator, Jay Levinson, and he told me that unfortunately, that day Spiderman had the flu,” he joked. “But, Spiderman is well and Glen Cove is well, and we are coming back strong. This is just the beginning. This is going to be so good for Glen Cove and the surrounding communities.”
Thursday, 17 April 2014 00:00
Glen Cove High School players, from left, Tajah Garner, Dejon Taylor, Manny Sican, and Ralik Jackson, after the Long Island Colts u18’s team vs. St. Anthony’s at Robert Finley Middle School last week. Touchdown ‘tries’ by Garner, Taylor and Sican.
Thursday, 17 April 2014 00:00
The third- and fourth-grade Knights took to the road last weekend as they faced off against Jericho early Sunday morning, April 6. Jericho’s teamwork and hustle brought down the Knights by a final score of 5 – 0. The early game may have been a factor as the boys started to play better and more like a team as the game went on. Once again, goalie Tyler Shea played outstanding in goal and was relieved by Christian Maiorano, who did just as well in the second half. Andrew Guster played solid defense in the loss.