Alpha was painted in 2012 as part of a series of wolf paintings for First Friday in Las Vegas, Nevada. I chose to keep the original and not sell it. I created this face many times and each one was different. I focused on colors and highlights of the hair and wanted each canvas to be unique. All the wolves sold and I was happy I saved Alpha for myself. Now, after many years, I decided to make prints of this wolf and share it with the world. 

Alpha • Acrylic Painting Original • Karen Hilliard Art

I chose to keep this one because the red in the background also softened into the fur. The light purple contrasted with the cream lines and texture and the eyes of this wolf seemed like he was the alpha of his pack. His eyes are calm and wise. The print was created on a wrapped canvas with a matte finish and holds the reds and pinks which show softness against the cream colors. The light in the eyes gives off a slight reflection. Each wolf painting focuses on the eyes to draw the viewer in.

Looking back at the photos from First Friday when I started out in 2012 was interesting. All the paintings on the metal grate sold and I am very thankful for that. The wolves were painted simultaneously with other animals such as owls. These pictures help me remember how much fun painting with acrylics was. The blue green wolf at the top, next to the eagle, drew people in because of its smile. 

The light green wolf was one of my favorites because of its gentle disposition and yellow eyes. The wolf with all the different hues of blue was intriguing because of the calm arctic feel it created in my mind. This wolf felt like a wolf spirit carved in ice. The purple wolf was definitely the most unique because it was created to look like a wolf at twilight under a starry sky. All the other wolves came to me in my dreams and I chose to emphasize the white highlights in their fur.

I hope you all enjoy these paintings and people will enjoy “Alpha” in their homes in the future. Please contact me at with any stories you have about wolves.

-Karen Hilliard