Tag Archives: Pet Fashion

etching of musicians

Illustration Interview

Meet our Instructor,  Joan Chiverton!

Joan Chiverton

So, tell us a little about yourself…

I’ve been an artist and illustrator my whole life. Recently I’ve discovered I really enjoy etching, monoprinting and silkscreen printing. I make it a point to sketch wherever I go. I often bring etching plates to concerts and jazz clubs and work directly on them at those venues.

I’m currently represented by The Old Print Shop, where I’m showing a new series of musician etchings this fall.

I’m on the Board of Directors of the Society of Illustrators. I teach at the Fashion Institute of Technology, and Harbor VA Hospital. And I organize a special sketching program at the Bard Graduate Center Gallery. My work has been in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal and numerous other publications.

I’ve also worked with numerous ad agencies and corporations as an award-winning art director and designer.

I can’t remember a time I wasn’t painting and drawing. My father, Albert Pels, was a fine artist, my mother, Gertrude Pels was an artist and children’s book writer. I’ve also managed to make time to raise 3 amazing children, Michael, Peter and Julia.

etching of musicians
Etching of musicians


Was there a project or accomplishment that you consider to be significant in your career?

I won Art Director’s Club awards and One Show gold awards as an art director in New York City before becoming creative director at several ad agencies in the Albany, NY region, including owning my own business. During that period, my companies won hundreds of creative awards. I also had a close working relationship with the New York State Children’s Theater in Albany, a pioneering theater group that saw the debut of many important plays and musicals.

Since my return to New York City, I’ve concentrated on illustration, my first love. The city is, and has always been my favorite subject, and I’ve been creating work that captures its people and its music.

concert sketched on location by Joan Chiverton
Concert sketched on location


Tell us about your current/upcoming exhibits…

Recently I’ve had exhibits and been part of shows at the Society of Illustrators, NY Society of Etchers, New Jersey City University and the Mehu Gallery. I am represented by The Old Print Shop on Lexington Ave and 30 Street.

sketch at Bark Dog Walk for Cancer Society
sketch at Bark Dog Walk for Cancer Society


What do you enjoy most about teaching?

When students start to draw they observe their environment and see the world differently. It literally changes their lives. I especially enjoy seeing some of my students progress professionally and gain recognition in the arts. And of course, I love to see students using the talents and skills they’ve learned with me, to enrich their lives and professions, whatever path they choose.

Thank you for taking the time to chat with us!

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Joan Chiverton teaches SXD 635 Quick Sketching for the Pet Product Business and SXG 140 Life Drawing Basics for Costume Design.

NY NY Lapdogs of luxury via @CrainsNewYork

John Larson of Water4Dogs helps French bulldog Connie with her recovery from spinal-cord damage. Photo: Buck Ennis

NY NY
Lapdogs of luxury via @CrainsNewYork
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Between our Professional Development Certificate Programs in Pet Product Design and Marketing and Creative Enterprise Ownership, FIT can help you get into the Pet Business- a great field with growth potential!

Wags 4 Hope

Written By:
Annie Blumenfeld, the Founder and President of Wags 4 Hope

April is National Heartworm Disease Awareness, month and I would love to share about how I got started with my non-profit organization called Wags 4 hope. My family began searching for three years through countless pet stores, rescue shelters, Newspapers, and private dog breeders, for a loving and loyal friend. A year and a half ago, our search happily ended when I was searching the Internet and found a two-year-old shaggy dog that had been rescued at a high kill shelter in Houston, Texas.

At his Veterinarian check up it soon was discovered that Teddy tested positive for heartworm disease through an antigen test. This blood test detects specific proteins, called antigens, which are released by adult female heartworms into the dog’s bloodstream. Teddy had to be given two injections of arsenic and remain in a crate. He had to be inactive and carefully monitored for a couple of months. The treatment for heartworm disease is very expensive and difficult for dogs to recover from. It can also be potentially toxic to the dog’s body and can cause serious complications, such as life-threatening blood clots to the lungs. Treatment is very expensive because it requires multiple visits to the Veterinarian, with the process of blood work, and X-rays. It broke my heart to learn that my dog had endured great pain.

Having learned devastating effects of heartworm disease from my loving companion, I seek to educate pet owners across the country about heartworm disease. I founded Wags 4 Hope in an effort to raise awareness and help support shelter animals’ medical needs. I combine my love of painting with my passion for animals. All of the proceeds raised through my paintings are given animal shelters and rescues.

For more information please visit wags4hope.org

Annie WAGS 4 HOPE pictured with Barbara Naugle, the Director of the Connecticut Humane Society
Annie pictured with Barbara Naugle, the Director of the Connecticut Humane Society