Choose a well detailed photo that shows how you want your pet posed for the painting. You may want to include other photos that show details you want included in the painting. Your pet's head must be at least 2" tall in the photograph you send for accurate detail.


Your pet's eyes are a crucial part of the portrait. They are what bring personality and realism to the painting. The photos you provide should show their eyes clearly with accurate color.  To enable me to recreate your pet’s individual character I MUST be able to see their details.


The nostrils, lips etc. must be large enough and clear enough to see. Remember, you know your pet’s face by heart but I have to rely solely upon the photograph you send to get their unique characteristics.


If you are taking a picture specifically for the painting, take it outside if possible. Get down at your animal's eye level, so you are not "on top" of them. Position your pet so the sun is directly in front of them, or at a slight angle to their face. Never have the sun behind your pet because it will cause your animal to be in a shadow. 


As I mentioned above extra photos are also suggested as these can serve as a reference for colouring, close-up details, and personality. Subjects, features, or backgrounds can be combined from separate photographs, and elements such as collars and leashes can easily be omitted.


Get as close to your pet as you can but make sure you stay in focus. If you would like a Head Study, try to zoom in on the head only. This will give the clearest details.


If you require a Full Body Study, try to fill the entire photo with the pet’s body. Unless you wish me to paint the whole scene the background is not necessary. If you do wish me to paint the whole scene, please take another photo of just your pet, in the same position but as close to your pet as possible so that I can still see all the necessary details.


Some pets will not stay still for a photo. If this is the case, just ask someone to stand behind him/her to hold their collar. If they try to hold the collar from behind their hand should not get in the way and, of course, this person would be painted out unless you requested otherwise.


If your pet has sadly passed away and you have no clear photo, please select the largest and clearest photo you can find and I will do my utmost. Please realize however, that this will not always be possible as I must be able to see some details


Please note: if your photos were taken professionally, you will need to ask the photographer for copyright permission.


I hope the above hints will help you and I achieve what we both want - a beautiful painting of your pet, showing their unique character which you know and love.

petportraitsbywendylawhamiltonontario.comsample photo


About Wendy

Commissioning a painting

Taking Photographs

Gallery—Dog Paintings

Gallery—Dog Paintings 2

Gallery—Cat Paintings

Gallery—Horse Paintings

Gallery—People Paintings

Gallery—Wildlife Paintings

Gallery—Domestic Animals  & Birds / Still Life

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