An Up and a Down of Self-Employment

by Coat & Tails on

One of the greatest aspects of self-employment is the lack of competition when it comes to the Coat & Tails “Employee of the Month” award, which involves lunch from the one-star restaurant of my choosing and free air conditioning. And that’s on top of the pot of coffee that’s as bottomless as my chaps. But I’m not only in this for the perks. Sometimes I think that even without these incentives, I’d still be in the pet-portrait game, mostly because of the people whose lives are impacted by my work. Sometimes it’s difficult to discern the nature of that impact, but I can always tell that things are at least heading in the right direction when people feel compelled to employ the use of profanity in their emails to me. It is in these moments that I feel assured that I’ve made at least a few correct choices. For instance:

“First off, I love your work. Seriously, it’s the fucking best.”


“That is fucking awesome Bryce!! My husband is going to love it lol. Can’t wait to receive it!”

Despite the spoils of self-employment, there is one major downside: there is no one double checking me. Thus, there is more room for error, especially because being vigilant is exhausting. This week was proof of this: I had to get a very large portrait printed, which required the equipment of a third party. But I ordered the wrong print size – it was 2” short – but didn’t realize that till after I drove all the way across town to pick it up. I even had it mounted to a foam board. This was a pretty tragic mistake that all the free air conditioning in the world couldn’t have prevented.

Anyway, now that you know its context and concurrently my shameful truth, here is the portrait:

film noir dog

And here are a few portraits that I did recently that I did not fuck up:

the man of leisure

cat wearing clothes

pirate cat

And here is something I’m working on:

work in progress