First things first, find a great photograph of your pet. The photo is a vital step in creating a great portrait, as a painting takes on a life of its own. The photo needs to be clear and in focus with sharp detail (close-ups work the best) while also capturing your pet's personality and aspects you love. It is a good idea to send a few photos of your pet, as this gives me a better impression of your pet's personality, colour and texture of the coat. Getting those elusive photos can be quite a challenge. Please see my Photography Tips page for pointers and examples of good and bad photos.
Photo's can be sent to me via email (at a high resolution, please contact me if you are unsure on this) or through the post. Please make copies of the original photo if you would like to send it via mail, just in case precious memories are lost. All photos will be returned with the portrait or free of charge if I am unable to work with them.
If your pet has passed away and you are unsure if your photos are of portrait quality, please contact me. We can go through the photos and I will help if I can.
Get in Touch
You can contact me via email or phone. I can then go through your photos with you and we can decide which photo is the best for the portrait. Once this has been decided I will create a mock-up for your approval. This is where you will be able to see what the final painting will look like with any changes, extra subjects and scenic backgrounds added. This montage will be used as the reference for the painting.
All paintings include a tonal background. The colours for the background are chosen to compliment the pet and enhance the detail of the painting. If you would prefer a scenic background, these can be chosen at an extra cost (please see pricing). The photograph of the pet can be placed on different backgrounds using Photoshop when putting together the montage.
All portraits are hand painted on quality canvas from the sketch to the finished product. If you would like to see more on this process, please see my Oil and Portrait pages to show the stages of my portraits.
I will update you regularly with the stages of the portrait to ensure you are happy with the portrait, and if any changes are to be made. For the background, normally a colour that is similar to the pet is chosen. I have found this really compliments the pet and makes it a strong focal point. Extra care is taken not to choose a background that will detract from the pet being the main focus.
Once the portrait is completed I will email you a copy for your approval for any final changes and to make sure you are completely happy with the portrait.
As mentioned in my price page, a 20% deposit is to be paid upon approval of the mock-up, with the balance to be paid when the painting has been finished and approved. Payment can be made via internet banking or secure credit card payments through PayPal. International commissions are welcome.
The portrait will be painted on boxed canvas. I have two choices, a depth of 32mm and a depth of 19mm. If you would like to hang the painting directly, I will use the 32mm with the edges painted. The 19mm depth will be used if you choose to frame it (without edges painted). If you are are unsure if you want to frame your painting, I will go with the first option as both can be framed. I don't generally offer framing as a rule, as I think the frame is a personal choice. However, if you would like me to arrange to have your painting framed, please let me know.
All portraits are sent via courier and wrapped carefully in cardboard, bubble wrap, more cardboard and waterproof packaging to make sure it is well protected and secure during transit
For time frames, I work on a six week turnaround, depending on the complexity of the portrait. While this may seem like a long time, each portrait takes many hours to complete (at least 20 at a minimum) and the paint needs to dry between layers. If I have several commissions I work on a waiting list (first come first served) system. However, if the portrait is for a special occasion and you need it for a certain date, please let me know so I can accommodate this.
Pet portraits make very special gifts, but sometimes you may not be able to find the photos or simply do not have the time to have it finished for that special occasion. Gift Vouchers are a great solution to these issues. These are personalised, printed on high quality card and come with their own welcome pack. These can be sent to you via the post, or emailed if you would prefer to print and package these or email it directly to the recipient.