The time-honoured head-and-shoulders portrait format works as well for pets as it does for people. And pet portraits on canvas are particularly well set up to take advantage of traditional, time-honoured techniques, because the artist has so much flexibility.
As a style, the combination of simple composition and background works to showcase an artist’s talent because it rivets viewers on the subject’s face. Talent matters here, because faces (especially familiar ones) are one of the hardest things to render accurately.
If you’re looking for art of your pet, make sure you find an artist who is confident enough to zoom in!
#7 This Classic Head-and-Shoulders Painting of a Siberian Husky
In warm light or with warm tones, blue backgrounds are often used to make the subject in a portrait pop forward. This especially works well for paintings of Siberian Huskies with blue or grey eyes, because of the similar hues!
#6 Thor Finds Himself in a Classic Pet Portrait on Canvas
Traditional oil-on-canvas techniques make this pet portrait come to life, and show the care put in to every brushstroke. A classically trained pet portrait artist can take even snapshots and make pet art that stands the test of time.
Getting the features in place is an important part of achieving accuracy in pet art.
#5 This Golden Retriever Painting Out of Time
This Golden Retriever painting stands out against a bright fresh background. Because the value of the background is somewhere in the middle, not too bright or too dark, both the shadows and highlights stand out clear and crisp. Because of that, you can really feel the bright sunlight and soft texture of her fur.
#4 Classic Dog Paintings Mean Classic Lighting
This hand painted canvas pet portrait of Ella uses light streaming in from a nearby window to achieve a beautiful soft, natural lighting effect.
#3 An Oil-on-Canvas Pet Portrait Fit For a Parlour or Living Room
Larger spaces need larger art, and with the right artist, an oil-on canvas pet portrait can be an amazing talking piece.
This painting of Misha is 36″ x 48″, and will be a joyful a splash of colour in her new home.
#2 (bonus) Two Matching Pet Portraits of Cats
Cookie and Chester aren’t related, but accoriding to their owner they absolutely act and look like siblings! Having pets in two canvases is great because it gives you flexibility in how to display them. Are they close together? Gazing at one another from across the room? Looking away?
Artwork has always had the effect of putting windows on walls, and portraits that interact make a room feel lively with company.
#1 Oil Pet Portrait of LJ Sitting Like Royalty
One advantage modern pet portrait artists have over their historical counterparts is the ability to use photos to capture a pose. In the past, a king would have to sit for hours for his portrait, but now the artist can put in those same hours without their subject’s cooperation. Perfect for capturing a dog!