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Portrait Photo Sampler

In painting your portrait of any size -

I work very closely from ONE reference photograph.

A good photo is VERY important.

Long story short - the better the photograph, the better the final painting. 




1. DISTANCE/ Movement  - Perhaps the biggest mistake clients make is to send me photos that were taken of their dog running across the yard or perhaps rolling on their back, jumping for a treat etc. While these "action"  photos show me personality - they are not something I can use for a portrait. Your portrait will be primarily of your pet's face and perhaps a small part of their body,  therefore - you want their BEST FACE -  the most flattering, well-lit, cutest shot of their beautiful face taken CLOSE UP or semi Close- up from 4 -10 feet MAXIMUM.

ALWAYS be asking yourself  "Is THIS face/pose, lighting, something I would want in Portrait form?" 

  2. LIGHTING - if at all possible - take or send a photo that has been taken in natural light. NOT bright sunlight but natural light.

Avoid Flash photography. If you have the “LIVE” feature on your phone - use it - it yields multiple frames from which to edit.

3. QUALITY  - The best Photos were taken with a good quality camera or phone which gets higher Megapixels will yield a better photo = better painting. 

4. FOCUS  - one “trick” I learned recently is to AIM FOR THE NOSE. Something about focusing on that feature results in a photo that does the best job capturing personality.

5.  REMOVE - collars, clothing, and any other extraneous distracting elements from the photo. I generally do not include those items in the portrait unless specifically requested.

6. PERSONALITY -  Each dog is a unique and wonderful animal. And YOU know YOUR dog and his/her quirks and special traits better than anyone. Try to capture those unique traits in your photos. 




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