Carney 'impressed' with Bush paintings

Former President George W. Bush can count one Obama administration official as a fan of his recently unveiled artwork.

White House press secretary Jay Carney said he was personally both "surprised and impressed by the pursuit that he's taken up and the clear dedication he has given it."

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But Carney sidestepped questions about whether President Obama was hoping to become the subject of one of his predecessor's works.

"Well, I think that would be up to President Bush," Carney said. "I don't think they had that discussion."

Carney also said he doubted Obama would follow suit and take up painting as a hobby himself.

"We've got close to three years remaining in the President's second term, so he's got his hands full at the moment," Carney said.

On Friday, Bush unveiled two dozen paintings of world leaders at a show at his presidential libraries.

The portraits included renditions of former French President Jacques Chirac, Russian President Vladimir Putin and former British Prime Minister Tony Blair.

"I was a little reluctant to put them out because I'm not a great artist and I don't want people to think I'm a great artist. But ... I'm a driven person and I want to get better. A whole new world has opened up," Bush said during an interview with his daughter, a correspondent for NBC's "Today Show."

On Tuesday, Animal New York, an arts and culture blog, reported that it appeared the images were modeled on top Google image search results of each of the leaders.