I’ve always drawn and painted for pleasure and had always hoped to make a living out of my art. My hopes began to turn to reality in 2000 when I was asked to donate a ‘lot’to a local charity auction.
Having committed myself I then had to come up with something of value so I decided on a painting of our own dog Charlie who was known and loved by everybody as he was a real character and a true “pub dog.” I thought it would raise possibly £30 or £40 as people entered the spirit of the auction but never did I expect it to go for £200! Orders for pet portraits started flooding in from people who had seen Charlie’s painting and I have never looked back! I made the decision in 2004 to become a full time professional pet portrait artist.
I can use a variety of mediums for my work so you can decide what you like best and what suits your pet portrait. I am mainly commissioned to work in pastels as they have a beautiful vibrancy and I can achieve a great amount of detail with them to create my unique pet portraits. Graphite, and acrylic are also available and can be viewed along with my pastel pet portraits on this site by visiting the pet portrait ‘Portfolio’ page.
I have been featured in Sporting Gun magazine as ‘artist of the month’ and ‘The Rider’ magazine where some of my working dog pet portraits were displayed. Most recently I have been asked to do a series of dog breed drawings for a company to go on mugs, coasters and key rings for the Norfolk China Company.
More recently I have been featured on a channel 4 documentary. I had the honour to paint Milo. The 2018 winner of the Most handsomest mixed breed of Scrufts. My portrait was handed of to the owner of Milo by Alan Carr, who was absolutely lovely. You can read about it in more detail in my blog.
I regularly have artwork sold through a shop in Gravesend called Made In Kent. A percentage of what they sell goes to the charity Mind, a very worth cause supporting people who suffer with all sorts of mental health conditions. The little gift shop really is worth a visit and it supports artists and artisans in Kent, so it is fantastic and puts a new spin on the idea of a charity shop. I do believe they are planning another branch soon. If so I will let you know. You can see a selection of my work that goes to their shop here. All of these pieces can be purchased separately through myself too, but if you are local please do go and support these lovely people.
If you are interested in commissioning a pet portrait then please contact me via the ‘Contact’ section. Below you can read about how to go about ordering your pet portrait and some of the options you may want to consider. Please also take the time to read through some of my delighted customers testamonials here.
I guarantee a likeness of your pet, there are some very talented pet portrait artists out there, so there is a lot of choice when entrusting some one to paint your pet. If you would like to see the likeness I get please see below some of the reference photos compared to final pet portrait.
This dog portrait was one of my very first pastels pieces. This is Jasper. I loved the challenge of painting the paving slabs he is lying on!
Placing an order couldn’t be simpler with three easy steps. However, before I can proceed I do need to see the photographs that you wish me to work from to ensure they are clear enough for me to produce the best results. Photographs can be sent in digital format via email at high resolution so they can be printed clearly or on CD by post.
Send all hard copy photographs by post only but don‘t scan them as it can change the colour considerably. Please see below for some simple tips on photographing your pet. It is essential to have good photographs (see right photo) in order to create your pet portrait. All photographs will returned with the completed portrait.
If you would like me to come and personally photograph the subject(s) AND live within a 10 mile radius of Sevenoaks in Kent I am happy to visit for the cost of my travel.
Once I have checked the photographs I will discuss any ideas you may have and we can decide on a composition, the type of background you may want and the sort of frame you would like, should you wish me to frame it for you. I will also give you a rough
delivery schedule. To secure this slot and timeframe I will ask for a a 30 per cent, non refundable deposit of the agreed price. The balance is due upon completion and once payment has cleared.
I will then sketch out the form of the portrait and send to you via email or
make it available for you to view online to check you are happy. If you wish I
will send you up to two updates of ‘work-in-progress’ although once we have
agreed the medium, style and format. The majority of my clients prefer to wait
for the completed work. I now also offer time lapses of portraits for you too, These are are great to accompany the finished painting, especially if gifting to a loved one.
On completion of your pet portrait I will ask for the balance which you can either pay by debit or credit card securely online through Paypal or by cheque through the post.
On receipt of payment (If you are paying by cheque I will wait for the cheque to clear) I will dispatch your finished pet portrait a using a reputable carrier, usually parcelforce or Royal Mail Special delivery and I will give you a tracking number.
To the left is a portrait of the above photo.
If you are interested in a pet portrait then please contact me via the ‘Contact’ section.
Please visit my prices page for an idea of how much you pet portrait will cost. I also have a selection of frames to choose from. If you can’t see frame you like let me know as I have many other styles to choose from. I am happy to discuss all ideas you may have, from the quirky to the traditional, even human portraits!
A great gift for any animal lover! Not sure what type of painting they would like? Cannot obtain any photographs of their pet? Too late for their birthday or anniversary? Then why not give them a pet portrait gift voucher?!
Sarah’s Pet Portrait gift vouchers can be any purchased from this site by debit or credit card securely online through Paypal or by cheque through the post. Any monetary value from £25 up to the full amount of the painting is available. They can be sent either to you or direct to the person you want to surprise.
Tips for taking your own photographs for your pet portrait
To ensure I can achieve the best results for your pet portrait it is important that I can work from clear images which show the unique details of your particular pet such as the fur, eyes, markings etc. If possible it is always best to send three or four images pointing out which one is most true to their colour. If you wish to send me some new photographs and you are not experienced in capturing pets here are a few tips I hope you will find helpful:
- Photographs taken outside without flash or by a large window are the best to avoid ‘red eye’.
- Try to avoid a really sunny day as the sun will cast dark shadows on your pet and the photograph won’t reflect their true coat colour. Likewise avoid a really dull overcast day.
- Ideally, take your photographs with your back to the sun.
- Take your pets photograph at their level rather than looking down to avoid and distortion or an unnatural pose and make sure they are facing the camera if you want a head/head and shoulders pet portrait.
- Try to get as close to your pet as possible whilst staying in focus as this will give the maximum amount of detail and make painting the portrait easier.
Good photographs are essential as I can only paint what I see!
The Alsatian’s photograph is sharp and in focus. It is well exposed giving an accurate colour representation. The horse’s photo has similar qualities, and also has an alert expression that will bring character to a pet portrait.