How to Begin the Portrait Process

To begin:  Locate or Create Your Ideal Photo


Mail or email your favorite photo(s) to me.  It’s important to choose your very favorite gesture, expression or stance that show the soul and personality you are in love with and wish to cherish into the future.  See photography tips below.  Whenever  possible, I love to meet the animals I paint.  Photo shoots can be  arranged in the Denver area (included in your portrait fee).  My goal is to create the best painting possible for you.  It will be my artistic interpretation, not just a copy of your photo. Once I study your photo(s), I can suggest a format,  (rectangular or square), and then you choose your canvas size. Think about where you’d like to display your painting and what kind of impact you’d like it to make.  Then take measurements of this area.  

Photography Tips
You’ll need patience, kindness, luck, a willingness to feel silly and perhaps a hot dog.  

Composition and Perspective   -  Close up shots result in an intimate and emotional portrait. Fill the frame with your pet.  Great images come from taking the photo at eye  level, preferably showing an eye or two.  Photographing from above or below creates a certain distortion that can be fun, depending on your mood.  Experiment by turning your subject at an angle to the camera so that she/he becomes more three dimensional and life-like.  Lots of motion can blur a photo so think about your pet quietly focused or at rest (unless motion is what you want to convey).  

Lighting -  Natural lighting is best, in solid shade or when the sun is low. Use a flash with caution.  

Emotion - What feelings would you like your photo to portray?  Try to capture a sense of humor, a favorite expression, a head tilt or a particular stance  you love.  Photograph your pet’s overwhelming love for you, showing all that personality you cherish so.  Snap your pet doing something that  reminds you of who they are and what they do as this will melt your heart forever.  

Study animal photos in books, magazines, on line, and on this website to see what perspective and emotion attracts you.  

Fun and Patience - Making photography into a game with an enormous amount of patience will likely yield best results (and your buddy will enjoy it too). Try holding a special treat or toy near your camera lens and don’t be afraid to take a lot of pictures.  Having trouble?  Back off and see what your pet wants to do and they just might have the best idea of all.  

Finally, if it’s your favorite photo of your pet, it’ll be perfect!  Your photo(s) will be returned.