Friday, 19 February 2016

Toto, Wizard of Oz (Great Dogs of Literature No 3)

Oil painting of Cairn Terrier, Toto, Wizard of Oz
And here we have Toto, the Cairn Terrier in L. Frank Baum's The Wonderful Wizard of Oz.  Fitting in a small stretch of the yellow brick road was, I felt, essential.

The famous quote: "Toto, I have a feeling we are not in Kansas anymore" seems to originate in the film not the book. It is sometimes used now to express the emotions conjured up by any strange or unfamiliar situation. 
I get that feeling about half way through most paintings I make. You get to a tricky bit, it is not looking like the picture in your head, you try to put it right, that makes it worse and once again you realise you are not in Kansas any more.

Fortunately, like Dorothy I also have a little dog that performs the same service as Toto:

“It was Toto that made Dorothy laugh, and saved her from growing as gray as her other surroundings. Toto was not gray; he was a little black dog, with long silky hair and small black eyes that twinkled merrily on either side of his funny, wee nose. Toto played all day long, and Dorothy played with him, and loved him dearly.”