What a cutie this little shih tzu is, right? I had the privilege of painting this pet portrait for a lovely friend, who bought it as a Christmas gift for her sister.

I hear that Fritz isn’t allowed in the kitchen at home. However, this little guy is now hanging happily in the kitchen.

So how do I create pet portraits? First I start with a snapshot of the pet and ask about the pet’s favorite toy, scarf or collar. Then I do a sketch in pencil, which I then forward to the client for approval before starting the painting.

Sketch of Fritz.

Next I prep the wood for paint. In this instance, I sanded and trimmed the natural wood to the right proportions. I transfer the sketch as outlines, then begin painting. After painting the solid areas, I add character to the art by using oil pencils for shading and highlights. Last, I apply two to three coats of urethane to stabilize the oil pencil and paint and make it wear- and water-proof.

If you’re interested in a custom pet portrait, watch the shop for an announcement of how to order. Or send me an email:

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