Rescued from Dublin as a puppy, 15-year-old Buddy lives in Belfast, Northern Ireland and stars in his own coloring books: A dog named Buddy and Buddy goes to university. Art student and Irish-American final year (mom is American and dad is Irish) Tara McCullough was inspired by her “15 year old best companion and pet” to create the books.
Tara specializes in painting at the Edinburgh College of Art in Scotland, but also in illustration and graphic design. “I’ve fully documented Buddy’s personality and traits in my coloring books,” she shares. “I’ve illustrated all of Buddy’s adventures – from being a seasoned yogi, traveling to the Bahamas for a short vacation with my brother Conor, joining an a cappella group, and graduating from Pawbridge University. Not to mention all of his favorite pastimes – eating, singing, dozing, peeing, begging for treats and walking up Cave Hill Belfast. “
Tara created the Buddy coloring book in 2014 as a surprise gift for her sister Erin. “The book was loved by all of our family and friends,” says Tara. “Last year I decided to create a subsequent coloring book, Buddy Goes to University. This book was dedicated again to my sister Erin, as she had just graduated from college and I am very proud of her. “
Digitizing the book was the biggest challenge, according to Tara, and it took much longer than creating the original drawings.
“I had to adapt my original drawings to minimal linework that would be suitable for children to color. The project was so much fun. “
Although Tara’s studies at university take up most of her time these days, she sells works of art on the side, painting the dogs, cats, birds, fish and “You name it!” The people. And plans for a future Buddy coloring book …
“I hope I can make another bigger and better interactive coloring book,” says Tara, “now that I’ve learned how it all works: Buddy is visiting the US!
Follow Tara @taramcc_art and buddythedog.org.uk.