Capture the unique character of your pet in a beautiful portrait
You know that special quality that makes everyone who meets your pet smile? His unique personality? Her sense of play? Those endearing things he does to make you laugh? That special expression she has that makes everyone’s heart melt?
These are the special attributes that endear our pets to us and make them a part of our family and our best friends. And all those qualities are what Larry Gekiere captures in his portraits of your pet, immortalizing their true individuality.
My name is Larry Gekiere and I paint memories. My traditional oil paintings are one of a kind, custom painted on canvas just for you. They will become a precious and lasting memento of a essential part of your life – a part of you – that you want to hold dear forever.
One of my unique paintings can be a great personal remembrance or a wonderful gift. In addition, if you desire, we can make limited addition giclée prints from your original painting for you to offer to your friends.
(I retain full reproduction copyright on each portrait. But because of the personal nature of a commission piece, I will not use an image for cards or art prints without the permission of my client.)
If you are trying to get the very best photo of your pet which will result in a great portrait, there are some basic concepts to keep in mind.
Many people choose to have professional photography done. That is always a possibility, but with a little patience and preparation, you can really enjoy capturing the perfect picture for a portrait yourself. Remember you know your pet better than anyone.
Have fun and don’t rush. Take plenty of pictures.
Outside is the best possible light. Of course, safety is always an issue, but try to take your pet into nature. If it is not possible to go outside, place your pet near a large window with plenty of natural light coming from behind or slightly to the side of you as you face the pet.
Avoid direct sunlight, as it can alter natural coloring and increase contrast between shadow and light, hiding some features. A bright, but overcast day is the best situation.
Don’t use a flash as it can distort your pet’s true coloring. An exception to this is a pet with a black coat. In this case, a flash may bring out shading and texture that might be lost in a photo with natural light.
Take your pictures at your pet’s level. Don’t have the pet look up unless that is the way you want the portrait to appear. Go to them instead of having them come to you. Let them relax in a part of their world where they are most comfortable. Sit on the grass or lie on the floor as you take the photo. Whatever it takes. This is especially important for full body shots which look best from the side rather than from above.
Take plenty of facial shots. Have their face fill the frame while still in sharp focus. Try some three-quarter views as well as from the fringe, as a slight angled pose can sometimes make a beautiful portrait .
If your pet will not sit still, have someone hold them in position. If these pictures are solely for the portrait, then the individual’s body parts can be removed from the portrait. Just make sure they don’t cover an important marking.
Make sure your pet is comfortable and at ease. Cameras can be distracting. If you can’t get your pet to behave normally, enlist the aid of someone else to keep them engaged.
Capture the most characteristic expression and pose of your pet. If they are generally happy, try to catch them doing their version of a smile.
A good idea is to have a favorite treat or toy on hand. Hold it by the camera, and try to direct their interest in the right direction. Don’t be afraid to act silly.
The quality of any portrait that any painter creates from a photo that you provide depends on the quality of that photo. If you do your best to make sure the image isn’t blurred by movement and that the image, whether the entire body or just the head, fills the frame, then the portrait that results will be optimal because it won’t require any guesswork on my part.
Oil Painted Pet Portraits. Commission Your Portrait Today!