It’s National Feral Cat Day!

Today is National Feral Cat Day.


You’d never see a feral cat in a dress, that’s for sure. But this day is meaningful to me because helping feral cats is a cause I spend a fair amount of time volunteering for. I am the trap/neuter/return coordinator for a local non-profit that serves Berkshire County, Massachusetts. My artwork and volunteer work have something in common; both raise up the dignity and standing of the animals who live among us. Today, I give my thanks to all of the feral cat caretakers I have met. Many of these folks have little more security than the cats they are helping, but they care, and they do what they can. I am honored to be able to partner with them to help cats who live outside.







Posted in Animals | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Pug Social 2017, Green Mountain Pug Rescue

Well we don’t leave our beautiful Berkshires very often, so when we do, there’s got to be a very good reason. Last weekend, we had one. We packed up our two Puggies, Bunsen Bean and Mabeline, and we went to Killington Vermont for the 15th annual GMPR Pug Social. What. A. Blast. Our Pugs had as much fun as we did, especially during playtime, where upwards of 100 pugs hung out together (along with their people) in the “show ring”.




Bunsen was happy to greet every dog he met in the standard doggie way.


Adorable Pugs were everywhere



This is the lovely Theodora Grace, of Pugs and Kisses fame.



There were a few available for adoption, including this handsome fellow.


There were contests. This big handsome boy won “Best Wrinkles”. I thought it was an interesting choice. There were many other entries with more wrinkles, but this one had the biggest wrinkles…. as well as paws the size of pancakes.


This cutie won “Longest Tongue” later on in the day.


The highlight of the event for us was the”Fanciest Outfit” contest. I had made a spaghetti-strap pink satin gown, bedecked with a big bow and pearls for Mabeline. There was some pretty stiff competition, but Mabeline looked as lovely and graceful as Audrey Hepburn. She won the contest, an achievement that will make us forever proud.



Pretty sure we’ll be going back next year.










Posted in Animals, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

A customer who bought my prints wrote……

“I mean, I HAD to. Adorable!”

My Shop


Posted in Animals, Artwork | Tagged , | Leave a comment

My Portraits in Denmark

Nordal, a really fantastic Home Decor company in Denmark, is carrying my prints now. Here’s their blog post about our collaboration.


The family company Nordal brings you carefully picked out products, selected with your daily life and high functionality in mind. In this blog we provide plenty of style and design inspiration, plus many different ideas on how to use our products. The blog is one of the common projects of our team, where everybody contributes with their best ideas. We hope that our beautiful pictures, mouthwatering recipes, practical tips and clever ideas will enlighten and inspire you in your use of the Nordal products. – See more at:
Posted in Artwork | Tagged , | Leave a comment

My Exhibit at the Civilization Museum in Quebec

I am proud to participate in this museum‘s exploration into the world of cats. My artwork is in a room where visitors are encouraged to sit with a (real-looking) cat and experience the joys of purring.




An exhibition that lets the cat (and dog) out of the bag!

Ethology, the science of animal behaviour, has made tremendous strides in recent years, challenging us to reconsider what we know about cats and dogs. Every day, new evidence emerges about their abilities, emotions, and intelligence.

The exhibition takes visitors on a sensory and interactive journey. Games and simulations encourage participants to see the world through animal eyes in order to better understand and interpret animal behaviours.

Through their colours, content, and design, the three parts of the exhibition each offer different insights and visitor experiences:

  • “In Their Skin”:  actively compare your physical skills with those of animals
  • “In Their Heads”: plunge into a setting that puts you on a level with animals and engages you in a variety of unique immersive experiences
  • “In Our Society”: learn about the nature of our relationship with these animals over time, and the important role they play in our society today
Posted in Artwork | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Bunsen – A Great Little Helper

Bunsen is never far from me as I go about my day fulfilling mail orders, painting portraits, working on my computer. And it’s only fitting that he pull his weight in the family to help out. He is particularly suited for the job of envelope licker, should I ever need help with that.


He doesn’t mind inspecting my prints and magnets before I send them, though I’m not sure if he yet knows what flaws he should be looking for. And he’s a talented paw model. He shows initiative, and has excellent interpersonal skills. I think he’s going to be great team member.


Posted in Animals | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Huffington Post Says My Portraits Are So Bad, They’re Good

I’ll take it! In a recent Huffington Post article about hilarious white elephant gifts, my Lady Pom Pom was chosen among 18 other gems of gifts people might give at a Yankee swap for the entertainment of it.

Original oil painting by Carol Lew. 16 x 20 inches.

My Old World Pet Portrait is in the company of some real winners. A favorite of mine is the lovely Nicholas Cage prayer candle.


The Chewbacca insulated drink sleeve is cute, but I’m thinking it may not stand up to washing.


I am saving the horse-head squirrel feeder as a future gift idea for my friend who has everything she could ever need already, but likes feeding the squirrels in her yard.


All in all, the Huffington Post has been very good to me. The article came out a few weeks before Christmas, and my already-busy on-line shop was deluged with orders.

Posted in Artwork | Tagged | Leave a comment

A Feature About Me in Rural Intelligence

Love this article that just came out today. It’s so well-written that even I’m extra-super inspired about my paintings today!

Featured Creatures: The Old World Pet Portraits Of Carol Lew

By Amy Krzaik

My cat, Oliver, believes himself to be the king of all he surveys (namely, the house and the front and back yards). And while the other pets beg to differ, he’s always quick to remind them of their subordinate positions. Although the smallest in size, Oliver is the oldest and craftiest and I believe his assessment of his stature to be valid. He considers himself feline royalty, and there’s a local artist who agrees with him.

Washington, Massachusetts based oil painter Carol Lew sees animals for what they really are — important and dignified beings fit to be classic Old World portrait subjects.

Although she studied painting at Philadelphia College of Art, it took years for Lew’s formal training and her love of animals to coalesce.

“In my earlier working years, I didn’t see a pathway for making a living through art,” she says. “But almost 20 years ago, after leaving a particularly stressful management job, I decided to try to make a go of it.”

The internet, she says, has opened up new possibilities for artists to make a living doing what they love. And the public loves her back — Lew figures she’s painted more than a thousand portraits so far.

Inspired by the work of Thierry Poncelet, a European painting restorer who replaced human faces with animals on historical portraits, Lew’s first similar painting was a Great Dane done in Early American primitive style. “It’s a theme of artwork that made me happy from the start,” she says, “and it still does.”

A commissioned piece takes Lew about two weeks to complete, considering that part of the process is selecting an appropriate photo of the pet, and partnering with the client to find just the right historical portrait to use as a reference. A Lew original of your cat, dog, gerbil, bird, lizard or other beloved companion will set you back $450. If you need time to ponder such a purchase, or if you don’t have a pet but love the concept, Lew offers prints ($9.95 and up), canvas prints ($40), and magnets ($6) of past works in her Etsy shop.

As you might expect, Lew is an animal lover and she and her husband live with two cats, a dog, a flock of chickens and three hives of honeybees. Working from home, as she does, has also allowed Lew to foster shelter animals and serve a six-year stint chairing a local animal non-profit. She currently works with an organization that spays and neuters free-roaming cats. “This kind of work is important to me because I believe that we, as humans, are responsible for the welfare of companion animals,” she says. “It’s wonderful to see pets who are loved and well cared for, but there are others who need help.”

Her incredible skill and obvious love of animals shows in her work, and people are noticing. Target online is selling pillows with Lew’s images in its Beekman 1802 FarmHouse line. And soon, her portraits will be featured on woven fabric items in the European market, as well as on playing cards.

The more of Lew’s witty works there are in the world, the better, I say.

“My artwork is fun,” she says, “and the best part of it for me is that it makes people smile.”

Posted in Artwork | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Bugus Bunsen Bean

Anyone who has the pleasure and privilege of sharing their lives with pets, has also experienced the sad, empty feeling when you lose them. Over the last five months, we lost our beloved Louise and Walter to old-age issues. For the first time in decades, we were dog-less. Our cats tried to fill the void, but it just wasn’t the same, and I so stared my search for a dog to welcome to the family. It’s super hard to find a Pug that needs to be rescued, but for some odd reason inside of me, it had to be a Pug. Having been devoted to animal rescue for so long I was determined to find one at a shelter or rescue.

This adorable fellow became available at the Springfield Humane Society in Vermont, and we went right away to meet him. I fell in love of course; who couldn’t love this adorable face.


On the two hour trip home from the shelter, we accumulated a page full of potential names, as is our custom. It had to be distinguished, yet at least slightly humorous. It had to have some meaning to us, or at least would lend itself to a story if we happened to be in a room full of animal lovers who’d had a little bit too much wine and wanted to hear it. The list included Buckminster Fuller, Mervin (my grandfather’s name), Charles (Kent’s middle name).


Near the end, our favorite name was Chester Ludlow after a sign we saw on the way home noting an exit where you could get to both of those Vermont towns. We almost went with that except when we googled the name, we found a Pug called “Chester Pug Ludlow” who had  an active  facebook page. We certainly didn’t want to start out our Pug’s life with us as a sort of imposter, so we went with our runner up name; Bogus Bunsen Bean. This was a childhood nickname of Kent’s brother. When they were kids, they’d heard that name but had never read it, or they would have known that it was a distortion of the names of three characters in a childrens’ story written by  Roald Dahl. In Fantastic Mr Fox, three main characters were Boggis, Bunce, and Bean. We like the blooper aspect of it. Seems just right for a Pug.


Posted in Animals | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Bees in My Loft

I am a first year beekeeper. Actually, I have been told that I can’t claim the beekeeper title until I have hives that survive for a whole year. I’m doing the beekeeping thing a little different than most folks; my hives are in my barn loft. It seemed like a good idea for a bunch of reasons, and a beekeeper I highly respect wrote an article about my set up. Stay tuned for Spring, when we’ll see if I’m really a beekeeper.


Posted in Animals | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment