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Artist's warm illustrations of love shows just how wonderful it is to own a dog

Two illustrations by Yaovao Ma Van As dog-happy
© Yaoyaomva - Instagram

Yaovao Ma Van As’s paintings of her and her dog Parker resonate with dog lovers the world over. The LA artist’s message is clear: to own a dog can be life changing.

By Nick Whittle

Published on the 29/10/2019, 09:00, Updated on the 19/12/2019, 15:23

The artist’s recent series of works are as popular as ever. Her illustrations amount to intimate snapshots of the time she spends with her dog Parker. As if to reaffirm the part her four-legged friend plays in her life, Ma Van As’s depictions are bright, expressive and full of charm.

Parker’s special place

Clearly Parker is an essential component of Ma Van As’s world. But it is a world that has changed since 2017. Back then, prior to Parker’s arrival, Ma Van As told the viewer through her distinctive medium of the perks and advantages of living alone.

Her work then began to centre on human love, and brought forth careful and thoughtful explorations of romance.

Ma Van As’s most recent work paints her love of Parker in the same light, capturing the essence of a dog’s love and companionship.

Here we’ve put five of Ma Van As’s paintings together to show you a little more of her treatment of her relationship with Parker.

You can keep up to date with Ma Van As’s work on Instagram and purchase prints of her illustrations on her website.

More than anything

Ma Van As told Close-Up Culture earlier this year, “Sometimes I try to convey a certain feeling, other times I just have an idea that I want to explore.” The feeling is apparent in this poignant moment; a snapshot dog lovers the world over can relate to.


A post shared by Yaoyao Ma Van As (@yaoyaomva) on

Sweater season

Ma Van As’s experimentation with colour and movement comes through vividly in this painting: a depiction of a windy Autumn day, and a walk with Parker beneath a canopy of auburn trees.


A post shared by Yaoyao Ma Van As (@yaoyaomva) on

Monday blues

Ma Van As captures a thoroughly relatable moment of solace and slump with this illustration. Her skill of storytelling brings mood and senses to life.


A post shared by Yaoyao Ma Van As (@yaoyaomva) on



A post shared by Yaoyao Ma Van As (@yaoyaomva) on

The sweetest distraction

Says Ma Van As of her love of Parker, “My inspiration comes from a lot of different things- sometimes people, experiences, thoughts, song lyrics, observations, or other artists. Most of all, my dog Parker is my greatest inspiration.”


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