Commissioning a portrait, step by step

I aim to make commissioning a pet portrait as straightforward as possible. I have a background in customer experience and I make it my priority to manage all orders professionally.  I hope you'll find the information below useful, but if you need help or guidance with anything, I'll be happy to help.

Getting started

Pet portraits are created using your photos for reference and I offer them in a choice of pastels, coloured pencil, watercolours or acrylics. Standard pet portraits are unframed and depict the animal's head and shoulders on a plain or mottled background. Requests for something more bespoke can be quoted for. Unframed portraits are supplied mounted within a soft white conservation mount and backing board (canvases are unmounted and unframed). Prices for unframed portraits in each medium are listed on the prices page

For the complete package, I can also take care of framing for you. Follow this link for more information and to view frame styles and prices.

Before booking a commission, you'll want to think about your budget and the style of portrait you'd prefer. You'll also need to find good photos for me to use as reference. Please take time to read the important info about photos.

Portraits take up to a week to complete and there is a planning stage up-front to sort out all the finer details. I can rarely start immediately, so if your portrait is a gift, I recommend booking at least four weeks in advance and, ideally, before September for Christmas gifts. If you do have an urgent order, contact me asap with the date you need it by and I'll let you know if I can fit it in.

So, in a nutshell, this is how it works

Click on each step below for more information

Contact me with a brief description of what you're looking for and when you need it by. I aim to respond within 48 hours. We'll then discuss finer details and any specific requirements, by phone or email. You can message me here.

For me to create a realistic portrait of your pet, it's really important that I have a good reference photograph to work from. Ideally, I need to be able to zoom in to see minute details, so high resolution digital photos result in the best portraits. However, if you only have old photos, it's not necessarily the end of the world. I'll always have a look to see if I can work with them. I need at least one photograph, but it's helpful to have several. Find out more about choosing a good reference photo.

I can create your pet portrait in pastels, coloured pencil, watercolours or acrylics. If you're not sure what you'd like I'll be happy to guide. You can see examples in my pet portfolio. You'll also need to decide how big you want your pet portrait. It may help if you take a look at the list of standard sizes and prices. If the size you want isn't listed, ask me for a quote.

Once everything is discussed and agreed (including a proposed completion date) you'll be asked to pay a £40 deposit to secure your booking. I'll send you written confirmation outlining the details agreed, along with an invoice for your deposit, which you can pay by credit/debit card or PayPal. There's more info about payments in my Terms & Conditions.

After your deposit is paid, I'll start work in plenty of time to meet the agreed deadline. You'll receive regular updates on progress and, if you are interested in viewing the portrait's progress, you'll be able to log in to a private, secured page on my website, where I'll post daily updates. When your portrait is nearing completion, I'll ask you to confirm that you are happy with it before invoicing you for the final payment. After payment has been made, your pet portrait will be securely packaged, along with a signed certificate of authenticity and shipped to you via Royal Mail. Follow this link for delivery information.

Keep an eye out for delivery

Finally, the exciting bit

Keep an eye out for delivery. Your portrait will be shipped with insurance cover and tracking, for peace of mind.

When your package arrives, unpack with care and prepare to be delighted.

Ready to get the ball rolling or have a question?


Just a thank you for the fabulous portrait of Shadow, now sitting proudly on my lounge wall. Having only recently lost him it really is as if you have given him back to us. The likeness is extraordinary - you have captured him completely, floppy paws and all. Thank you so so much. - Karen