I was delighted to receive a copy of the artist Mark Ulriksen’s new book, Dogs Rule Nonchalantly. I’m familiar with Ulriksen’s work largely through the New Yorker, and it was a treat to discover that he’s an avid dog lover. I love his style, and this is a brief and beautifully collected book about life with dogs (both in general and in his personal history).
The paintings are wonderfully reproduced (as you can see from these sample pages), and the text is very funny and engaging. I also liked that the text appeared to be handwritten (presumably, a font was made of Ulriksen’s handwriting). Most of the paintings in the book are either from private commissions or covers of celebrated magazines (Ulriksen is a regular on the cover of the New Yorker and the Atlantic Monthly).
Of course, I also had to take a photo of one of the paintings that included a German shepherd. This one was featured on the cover of the New Yorker in 1996:
Some favorite quotes and lines:
1: “Personally, I was never big on little dogs, and cats are a little too independent, too aloof to get close to. But dogs are different, they give you their undivided attention. They watch your every gesture, read your every emotion, listen attentively to every word you say — until they hear the rustle of a bag of chips being opened.”
2: “Whether you’ve been gone for 5 minutes or 5 hours, they’ll greet you like you’ve been gone for 5 years.”
A typical dog 12-step program:
1. Wake up, stretch
2. Eat meal in three seconds
3. Go outside, pee, walk, poop, walk, pee, smell everything
4. Go inside, follow human’s every movement, check all floors for microscopic food particles
6. Repeat Steps 1-6
This certainly describes my dogs’ lives! And finally, a sweet one:
4: “Dogs have such short lives. They deserve to be spoiled.”
This book would make an excellent gift for any dog lover, and it’d even serve as a beautiful coffee table book. I could also imagine it being fun to read to children, because of the simple text and the entrancing artwork. All in all, a hearty recommendation from us!
Disclosure: I was provided with a review copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.