Hi, I'm Mary Kemp, passionate painter of anything to do with the seaside.
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Thursday, 20 April 2017

How to Take Great Photos For Your Pet's Portrait

As an artist I often get asked to paint peoples pets.
I love animals and think they make great subjects. I draw and photograph my own and the family's regularly and included them in many a painting.
The interesting bit comes when I am asked to paint someone else's animals that I've never seen before.
For this I have to rely on the owner's photos and here's some of the guidelines I give them.
An elegant pose!
  • Your camera isn't really important. Most modern cameras, even on phones, take a very good picture. If you hold your camera as still as possible you're onto a winner.
  • First of all take at least one photo of your whole pet, don't leave the feet or the tail out.
  • Capture the pose you would like painted. (easier said than done I know)
  • Then take lots of close-ups and from different angles, not just from how you see your pet but from down on their level.
    Not easy to see the dog!
  • In fact in this digital age take as many photos as possible, even if they're not in the pose you want.
  •  Daylight is best. Light from one side shows the best detail.
    A good looking spaniel!
  • Let the artist see the scale of your pet in relation to people and other animals.
  • Consider the colour you want shown. Do your photos reflect that?
What if your pet is no longer with you. Can the photos you already have provide enough information?
Snap of the cat, a bit blurry.




Many a portrait has been painted from an out of focus photo. 
It makes the artist's task harder but not impossible. 

And if you want to find more about commissioning art look at my post How to Commission a Piece of Art Online. or visit my website http://marykemp.co.uk

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