top of page

About Karen O'Neill 

I have drawn ever since I can remember, and being an ardent animal lover, it was inevitable that from an early age I would gravitate to drawing animals. Largely self-taught, for years I worked in pen and ink, but when I discovered what artists could do with the humble coloured pencil, I knew I had to try them for myself – and I was amazed. Coloured pencils have come a very long way from the scratchy pencils of my childhood. The range of colours is amazing, and the quality of the pigment is wonderful. I bought my first set of artists quality pencils, and I was hooked. I had found my preferred medium and my choice of subject matter was never in doubt. Animals – in all their furred, feathered, or wrinkly-skinned (Elephants and the like) glory.

It was not long before I was receiving pet portrait commissions, and even though I don’t usually get to meet my subjects in the flesh, I love getting to know them through careful observation from photographs my clients send me.


A year or so ago I was fortunate to have my drawing ‘…And We Shall Have Snow’, published in Leisure Painter and The Artist Magazines, as well as several animal portraits in Ann Kulberg’s Colour Magazine,

And We Shall Have Snow copy.jpg

most recently my drawing The Royals’ was published in the April 2024 issue as a Featured Artist.

The Royals drawn by Karen O'Neill

I was also invited to write and illustrate a tutorial for DRAW Dogs book which is available from Amazon. My contribution to that book is the drawing of a Miniature Dachshund

Minature Dachshund by Karen O'Neill

I was also invited to write and illustrate a tutorial for Carrie Lewis’s popular on-line magazine, CP Magic, for which I drew Grevy’s Zebra for the July 2023.

Gervy's Zebra by O'Neill Animal Art

Animals are my usual subject matter, but now and again I like to challenge myself and try something new – something that takes me out of my comfort zone and last year I was honoured to receive a Bronze Award from the Camelback Gallery for my portrait Yearning. This was my first serious attempt at a human portrait.

Yearning by Karen O'Neill

So please take a wander through my website, and if you would like to commission a portrait, either of a beloved pet or a favourite wildlife animal please get in touch. Such portraits make wonderful original gifts for that special person in your life – or, of course, for you.

Award winning shropshire artist Karen O'Neill
bottom of page