I’m not sure of the exact numbers, but a large percentage of the portraits I do are of family pets. You might think they are easier to draw, but in a lot of cases they are not. Human faces for the most part are symmetrical. For example, if you would draw a line from the side of your nose upwards it will usually line up perfectly with the inside of your eye. Or the top of the ear lines up almost perfectly at eye level. Once you get some of the tricks of the trade down it helps with making more realistic portraits. I have only drawn dogs and cats, but there is so much variety in both species, especially among dogs.
Hands down, the BEST part of my job is knowing that something I have done has made someone happy. Several people have sent me videos of their loved ones opening my portraits and it really makes my day. When I’m not working on commissions or my own work, I love to be able to spread the love. Whether it be a birthday or a wedding gift, I like to use my talent to make people smile.
Or, if I accidently back into my brother-in-law’s car at Thanksgiving, I might draw an apology portrait of his dog (below).
Unfortunately, my parents dog, Maddie, passed away a couple weeks ago. She was a cute little Maltese with a sweet fuzzy face. Our family has had several animals in our lifetime but Maddie was the first dog that was just my mom and dad’s. I knew I wanted to do a portrait but I wanted to make it special. As usual, I couldn’t stop at just one idea so I did two different projects and will let them decide which they like the best.
The first one I used a small hook so that they could hang her ID tag and for the second I used a shadow box so they had the option to hang her collar, tag and even put in one of her favorite toys.
Below are some other pet portraits I have done.