pet portraits, step by step guide

I aim to make commissioning an artwork as straightforward as possible. The process is the same for pet portraits and any other commissioned piece. I have a background in customer experience and I make it a 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.

Pastelspet portrait


What you get

  • Head and shoulders portrait of the pet with either a plain white or coloured backgraound, depending on the paper and medium used;
  •  Conservation grade mount and backing board (securely fitted), so the portrait is ready to pop into a frame;
  • Certificate of Authenticity.

Other considerations

  • If you'd like a full-body portrait and/or any other specific request, please ask for a quote;
  • Watercolour & ink portraits are a great choice if the budget doesn't stretch to pastels or coloured pencils. Click or tap here to see my price list;
  • Book early.  Single portraits take a week or more to complete and I can rarely start immediately. If your portrait is a gift, it's a good idea to contact me several weeks (months, even) in advance, especially for Christmas gifts;
  • If you have an urgent order, I may be able to fit it in, so contact me asap with the date you need it by;
  • A deposit of just £40 will secure your slot in my schedule and you'll be given a proposed start date up-front.

and this is how the process works . . . . . . .

Contact me

Step 1 - Contact me to outline what you're looking for

All I need is a brief description of what you want and when you need it by. I aim to respond within 48 hours. We'll then discuss the finer details by phone or email. You can message me here.

Find good photos

Step 2 - Find some really good reference photos

For me to create a realistic portrait of your pet, it's essential to have good reference photographs 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. 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.

Choose size and medium

Step 3 - Choose a size and medium for your portrait

I can create your pet portrait in pastels, coloured pencils or watercolour & ink. Pastels and coloured pencil portraits are the most detailed and are similar in style, although there are subtle differences. Watercolour & ink portraits are looser in style and less detailed, with a price that reflects this. You can see examples in my pet portfolio. You'll also need to decide on a size, so it might help to take a look at the list of standard sizes and prices. If the size you'd like isn't listed, ask me for a quote.

Pay your deposit

Step 4 - Pay a deposit to secure your slot

Once everything is discussed and agreed (including a proposed completion date) you'll receive a written estimate outlining the details of the portrait and the cost. 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.

Sit back and relax

Step 5 - Sit back and relax

I'll start work in plenty of time to meet the agreed deadline. You'll receive regular updates so you can keep an eye on progress. When your portrait is nearing completion, I'll ask you to confirm that you are happy before invoicing you for the final payment. Once payment is received, your pet portrait and a signed certificate of authenticity will be carefully packaged and shipped to your door . 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. I'll let you know when it's been despatched and provide the tracking number. I usually send by Special Delivery, to arrive the next working day.

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

Happy dance

Ready to get the ball rolling, or simply 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