Speak softly and own a big, mean Dobermann

“I never liked jogging, running, height jumping or parkour, but the neighbour’s Dobermann pinscher has helped to reveal my potential.”

This is a dog. It is muscled, as if chiseled from black granite, and alert, but not aggressive. It is a part of nature, same colour as the trees in the background, as ancient and strong as the forest. Trunks of trees rhyme with its legs, and it itself is shown as a trunk for the yellow bush behind it.

Victor Dynnikov, gouache/paper. Image courtesy of Ars Longa Gallery

Unlike the cat from the previous post that was just watching life go by, this animal is prepared to take an active part in it.

The trick the artist used to “merge” the dog and the yellow bush, turning the latter into the dog’s tree crown is a simple shadow line.

DogThe artist creates a shadow that can’t be there, given the distance between the dog and the bush – and thus “merges” them together into a single object.

This is a simple drawing of a dog which is one with nature, simple but convincing, and so it is a valid example of the “Brevity is the soul of wit” concept.

PS The heading of this post is a quote from Dave Miliman.



  1. Fantastic! I love the dog merging with its background, creating the impossible shadow and shifting our initial assumptions on how we should look at both ‘objects’. Its this moment of strangeness, of looking at the world differently that makes art like this really great. I just wrote on the same theme, but from the perspective of ‘use’ in Art and Design: ameliacarruthers.com

It would be grand to hear from you now!

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