A Beautiful, Highly Detailed Life-like Portrait of Your Pet
by Animal Artist Cathryn Hill-Freeman

Photo Advice

When taking photos it is important to get on the same eye level as the animal, with an average dog this means kneeling down. With a smaller animal, either lie down or put the animal on a table.

It can often take three people to achieve a good result, one to hold the animal, one to take the photo and another to get the animals attention. This person should be at the photographers shoulder. We have found with most dogs, it is best if the pose is 'threequarters' rather than 'face-on' or 'profile'. The background is not important, but try to avoid taking the picture against a white background or a very bright sky as this will give a false colour reading with most automatic cameras. Wherever possible, avoid using flash photography for the same reason. Best results are achieved on a fairly bright day but without too much direct sunlight, which can cause deep shadows.

If the pet has passed away, then gather together as many photos as you can and I will be happy to advise you whether it is possible to produce a satisfactory portrait.

The quality of the photos will dictate the quality of the finished painting as I include as much detail as possible. A fuzzy snap of a black Labrador under a tree at the bottom of the garden is a non-starter!

Photos can be sent by email or by post. If using the post, I would strongly advise using Recorded Delivery and protecting the photos with a cardboard insert in the envelope, and I will return them the same way.