FAQ: Pet Portraits
I get so many questions about my art, especially about my pet portraits from how to order, photographing pets, prices, etc. that I dedicated this blog to answering most of these burning questions you might have.
1. Do I have to bring my pet into see you or can you work long-distance?
This is probably the most frequent question I receive other than price. I have painted for clients all over the United States, but if you are local (Central Florida), I would love to meet your pet and see them first-hand. It always helps to get to know your subjects….furry and all. But if this is not possible, you can just tell me about them so that I can understand their personality. If you are far away, I can work from high resolution pet images that you send me.
2. Do you create your pet paintings on a computer?
Absolutely not! Each commssion is entirely hand-painted and signed by me, the artist (FayBecca). I may have a little help from my two Maltese (Lily and Daisy) as they snooze next to my feet…but you have my sincere promise that they did not take a paint brush to your pet!
3. Can you paint the entire animal and can you paint more than one pet in the same picture?
Yes I can paint the whole animal (see pet portrait gallery) and I can paint more than one pet in the painting but I prefer to not put more than two pets on one canvas. More than two requires a larger canvas and becomes quite pricey for the client. If you have more than one or two pets, multiple canvases on a wall make a beautiful statement.
4. Do you ever take commissions for other pets or unusual pets besides cats and dogs?
Yes, I really love to paint most creatures, large and small….cat portraits, dog portraits, horse portraits, and let’s not forget fish, birds, parrots, frogs, geckos, pigs, cows, or any other beautiful animal that has a place in someone’s heart. I also do florals, abstracts, and wild animals…just ask me!
1. What kind of photos can you use?
I need high resolution images, where I can clearly see the eyes and nose. If you have a smartphone, especially a newer version, the resolution on those devices are perfect. Also, these are very easily emailed or sent through text to me directly. Once I have your images, we can discuss whether I can comfortably work from them to give you what you want.
2. Do you have any advice on how to take great shots of my pet?
I am clearly not a photographer and I realize that it isn’t simple to get that perfect shot….especially with moving critters! When I take photos, I use my iPhone (you can use an android too) and I just keep taking shots holding down the button for 25-45 images (you can always delete them when you finish). I try different rooms with different light, outside and inside both. Try different angles and just play with it…make it fun! Your pet will get the message and will become more comfortable and accommodating if you are making it a game.
Use natural light whenever possible, it is always preferred over a flash. Near a window is good with the light behind you when a flash is not required. Early morning or late afternoon light is softer and more angled.
For more realistic pet portraits, take the photograph from the level of your pet. For a more whimsical and abstract approach you would stand pointing the camera down at your pet which creates a distortion that lends itself to this contemporary approach, which I can do if you like.
3. What if I have a print photo and not a digital photo to send you of my pet?
Most images these days are on people’s computer or cell phone devices which lends itself to emailing. But I have actually done many pet paintings of now deceased animals and the only picture someone might have is a print picture to give me. In this case, I would want you to make a copy of the picture you want painted and send the copy to me via postal mail. Once you place your commission order, I will tell you where to mail them.
4. What if you don’t think the photos are good enough to use?
If I think the images you sent me won’t work, I will ask you for more photos. If I really think I can’t do a great job on your pet’s portrait, I will tell you.
Time and Money:
1. How much to you charge for an oil portrait?
My prices are individually sent UPON REQUEST via email. The best way to have someone understand how an artist comes to a price for a painting is based on several factors and all artists come to this number differently. For me, it is so hard to put a price on my work because the enjoyment from painting is priceless. Therefore, my prices are based by the size and type of canvas you choose. Visit my blog entry regarding: To Frame or Not to Frame to help you decide. You can choose either a regular framed canvas or a gallery wrapped canvas that doesn’t require framing. I also offer a fine wood panel that has the same qualities as gallery wrapped canvas except it is wood and has a smoother surface. I love the museum quality, gallery wrap or wood panel because of the thick edges (1 1/2″) in which I can continue the painting around the edges or painted simply black which is also a beautiful sophisticated choice for the edges. This element gives a 3-demensional look to your pet painting when hanging on the wall. If you intend on framing, choose the 1/2″ traditional canvas. And if you would really prefer I paint on flat canvas boards, just tell me and I will do that for you.
I will send you my current PRICE SHEET for my work that includes the standard sizes sizes I paint. The best way for me to price a commissioned pet portrait is to know what you want and what you invision. Please contact me on the CONTACT page for a quote! I would like to preface this by saying that I believe my work is very comptetively priced and hopefully you will be surprised at the quality and service you will receive from me as an artist.
2. I want a large painting and I don’t see the size I want listed on your pricing.
No problem. When the size is large, we can discuss the scope of the painting and estimate price accordingly. Contact me personally either by email or by phone and we can plan exactly what you want.
3. How long will it take to finish my pet’s portrait?
Once we begin discussion your custom painting, I will give you a time frame for completion. The holiday season is my busiest time of year. It is best to order early for holiday gifts. A general rule of thumb is to allow 4-6 weeks. I give each commission my full attention and commitment. If for some reason I don’t think I can meet our deadline, a gift certificate will allow your recipient to actually participate in the process.
4. What if I want to give the painting as a gift?
Custom pet portraits make excellent, heartfelt gifts. If there is someone in your life who already has “everything”, gifting a custom oil painting of a cherished pet will be incredibly unique and treasured forever. My custom pet portraits have literally brought the recipient to tears….the good kind of tears! And remember, if you are in a hurry to give a gift…instead of a finished painting, you can give a paper certificate. This allows the recipient to be a part of the creative process, which is fun.
5. How much can I expect to spend on shipping?
Currently, I only ship UPS throughout the United States as I have found that they are the most reliable and safe. Shipping charges usually run $15 – $57 depending on canvas size and will be determined more specifically once your painting is packaged.
Finally, I hope that most of your questions have been answered here…but if not, please feel free to email me at [email protected] or use my CONTACT page on this webpage. I would love to help bring the vision of your pet to canvas! I love to hear from people and enjoy your feedback.
I would like to leave you with a little something…..
FAQ: Paintings and Leaf Sculptures
I have had many questions requesting information about purchasing art that I have created another FAQ page. This blog will address these and hopefully will help answer all questions regarding my art portfolio. Below are the ones I receive most frequently. If you need further assistance, please fill out your CONTACT information in the contact box on my home page, or EMAIL me at [email protected] and I will get right back to you shortly:
1. “I don’t see a place to order art on your webpage…Can I purchase a piece of art (i.e. sculptured leaf, painting, dog portraits) directly from your webpage?”
I do not have ecommerce directly on my webpage but you can purchase from me by contacting me by using the CONTACT box located on the left of the Home Page. Since there are many variables to buying and purchasing and shipping of a painting or sculpture, I have tried to make it easier for you–the buyer, to have the personal service of knowing the cost of what you are purchasing. Again, you can email me directly at [email protected] with your interest and I will get back with you within 24 hours.
2. “Where do I find your prices?”
Contact me on any piece of art you see that you would like to purchase or if you want to commission a piece of art and I will send you my price sheet via email if the price is not indicated in description of the art.
3. “What type of payments do you take and do you take PayPal?”
Payments include: Major credit cards, debit cards, i.e. Visa, Mastercard, Discover and the security of PayPal (you do not need to have an account to purchase through PayPal). The only credit card I do not accept is AMEX (American Express). I will accept a personal check but I will not begin a commissioned piece, or ship art that has been purchased directly from my portfolio, until the personal check clears the bank from which is was issued.
4. “Do you charge Sales Tax? Does the cost include shipping?”
In my county of Semimole, Florida, there is a 7% sales tax requirement. This is the sales tax that I charge for any order originating in the State of Florida. All other orders originating in the United States are NOT subject to the additional sales tax. Shipping charges are not included and range anywhere from $15-$45. I currently use either the USPS or UPS for shipping. I shop rates to find the best price for shipping to save my customers money on shipping rates.
5. “How do I know which paintings are for sale in your portfolio?”
When you visit my paintings page and you click on the art photo, it will open up to a larger photo and will have the description of the art and will indicate whether it is “available” or “not-available”. If the piece is available the price will be noted with the description. Currently, I am only selling original pieces and am not selling prints at this time. Please contact me directly if you are interested in a painting and you can purchase directly from me.
6. “I love your unique leaf sculptures…how can I order these pieces from you?”
You can CONTACT me using the “Contact Information Box” on my Home Page. Included in this contact box is a drop-down menu where you can order your very own sculptured leaf that I will sculpture personnally to your specifications (i.e. color, deminsions). The drop-down box will indicate which type of leaves I have currently that I can make for you. This list may change periodically since some leaves are not available during certain times during the year. Each sculpture is made from a real leaf and formed into a beautiful piece of useful art. On my leaf sculpture page, you will also find examples of leaf sculptures that I may have currently for sale. Click on the picture and the description will tell you the type of leaf pictured and the price.
7. “What do I do if I want a pet portrait of my pet?”
I do all kind of commissioned art, including pets, and really anything anyone can think of as long as I have a sketch or photograph of the subject. To commission a pet portrait, please go to my FAQ page on pet portrait commissions where most of your questions will be answered.