Reference Photos

The key to getting a great portrait of your loved one begins with a good reference photo.  Here are some things to take into account when taking or choosing a photo to submit:


Overall quality of the photo or photos is critical for a good result.  Photos that are out of focus, have poor lighting or make your loved one appear distorted make it much more difficult to work from.  Additionally, the more pixels, the better, as this allows your artist to use editing software to enhance the photo for reference use. Remember, I don't know your loved one so I need to be able to get as much detailed information from the photos you give me as possible.


Depending on whether you wish a portrait of the entire animal/person or just a headshot, a good beginning composition of the reference photo will enhance results.  You can do this by filling your lens with the subject which minimizes unnecessary background clutter.  While clutter can be removed, the more of the subject you see, the more detail can be achieved.  It’s helpful to get down at your subject's level - photos shot looking down or up can lead to distortion. Try to avoid using the zoom function as this will reduce the quality of the picture.  Move closer.


Shoot for natural lighting whenever possible.  Natural light is best for getting the colours correct, with a good balance of highlights and shadows which make for a more interesting portrait.


Submitting multiple photos of your subject can also be helpful.  You may have one shot that is the perfect composition but does not show important details such as accurate colour, fur direction (pets), intricate contours, eye colour, etc. This is when close up photos can help nail down those details that are so important in the final artwork.   If you love a particular composition but the colours are slightly off submit more photos and chat to me about colour accuracy. We will agree on all these details before I begin work on your portrait.

Don’t hesitate to reach out with questions about photos of your particular subject. Getting a portrait that captures what is unique and special about them is what makes this whole process fun and fulfilling for everyone!