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.
Saturday, 01 March 2014 00:00
The second meeting of the Powers Chemco property site at Glen Cove City Hall last Thursday night focused on health concerns in the surrounding area. Spokesmen from the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC), Department of Health (DOH) and other environmental experts discussed the extent of the contaminated soil and water at the site. It was a continued discussion on the proposed clean-up of the State Superfund site, which was formerly occupied by the Columbia Ribbon and Carbon
Manufacturing Company, and now located within the 15-acre Konica Minolta property.
“After careful studies, we found that the contaminated soil and water table poses no threat to nearby residences,” said Nathan Epler, a hydrogeologist from the environmental consulting and management firm Roux Associates.
Friday, 28 February 2014 00:00
The Glen Cove Council of PTAs will be holding its Annual Community Scholarship Fund Event at the Swan Club on Sunday, March 9, at 11:30 a.m. The Glen Cove Community Scholarship Fund was founded in 1958, and it annually administers funds in the form of scholarships to deserving Glen Cove High School seniors. All proceeds from this event will be donated to this fund. The event will feature a performance by the High School Jazz Band and a basket raffle. This year’s honorees are Nomi Rosen, Dr. Michael Israel, Rosemarie Sekelsky, Brittney Frank Rifkind, Suzanne Anderson and Mary Murphy.
Thursday, 27 February 2014 00:00
The North Shore High School swimming team completed its season with high honors this year. Both the men’s and women’s teams have qualified individual athletes for all-conference and all-county championship competitions.
Coach Samara Weitz has also been honored with the Nassau County Coach of the Year award—motivating many of her athletes to succeed throughout the season, including senior Kristen Stanis.
“She made sure I was working hard, but also having fun,” Stanis said. “She taught me how to balance work and play and how it’s important to maintain it.”
Thursday, 20 February 2014 00:00
It was all fun and games at the fourth annual Winter Classic Hockey tournament at the Town of Oyster Bay Ice Skating Center in Bethpage on Saturday, Feb. 8. Young adults and kids of all ages from the Long Island Blues Hockey team faced off against three other teams in the event that gives individuals with special needs the opportunity to play ice hockey in an accommodating setting.
Michael Russo, founder of the Long Island Blues team, said he started the program 10 years ago so his son, Nicholas, who has autism, could play hockey.