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Commissioning a Painting...of Your Dog

Sometimes I worry about walking that fine line between being a responsible pet owner and an obsessive pet owner. ("Your dog is wearing a backpack," my sister recently observed.) Still, that concern didn't deter me from commissioning a painting of my dog, Ozzie. Portland, Maine, artist Elizabeth Fraser, whose work I'd found on Etsy, started out with a photo of Ozzie, and two weeks later, the painting arrived in the mail.

The painting's diminutive size, at at only 5x5 inches, made me feel like less of a weirdo for getting my pet's portrait commissioned. But as more of my friends saw the final result (framed and placed on my fireplace mantel) they stopped thinking that I was slightly nutty and began to realize that I was on to something really cool.

Fraser, who works primarily in oils, was a delight to work with, and I thought that $75 was a major steal for an original piece of artwork of my pet.

What do you think? Would you get artwork commissioned of your pet?

Join The Conversation
karenlea99 karenlea99 8 years
Wow this is a great bussiness idea, i'll draw my dogs too and maybe my neighbour's dogs and get some money ... :-) thanks for sharing me this great article ... maybe sometime you can make an article about dog kennels
napsac36 napsac36 9 years
Hi Everyone! This is Maureen, the artist's girlfriend. I told her I would be writing to you. First, thank you Casasugar, for posting Ozzie's photo. Elizabeth has received the pleasant surprise of getting...swamped! With lots and lots of cat, dog, and even guinie pig photos! There are still a few questions coming in, and I thought maybe letting people see a variety of her animals paintings would show her style. If anyone is still interested in getting paintings done for the holidays, that is still possible. The sooner you ask, the better. =) Thanks! She really appreciates it!
emalove emalove 9 years
I have cats, not dogs, but I would absolutely pay to have their pictures painted...and &75 is not a bad price at all!
kimyjo kimyjo 9 years
My BF got a portrait of her much beloved by all dog Reno - we all wished we had one too...
jessica888 jessica888 9 years
I do pet portraits - check them out at my website - - leave a comment if you're interested in commissioning one. thanks!
boredatwork boredatwork 9 years
I'm getting one painted for my husband as his anniversary gift. I hope he loves it.
lollypoppers lollypoppers 9 years
My mom is an artist. She does mainly pastel portraits of children but she has done portraits of all the dogs we've had since 1982.
arienne arienne 9 years
I love it! Your dog is adorable and the painting is great. I'm now seriously considering getting one of my brittany. It would be perfect for my office...
lindaloo lindaloo 9 years
I have pop art versions of my dogs and I love them.
nurdburd13 nurdburd13 9 years
oh yeah, i'd totally do it for daphne & lydia. i'm ok w/ being a obsessive pet owner, haha.
Padraigin Padraigin 9 years
One of my friends does pet portraits, too. She's amazing.
angelik416 angelik416 9 years
some woman commissioned a painting of her dog at a gallery near me and then thought it didn't look anything like her dog and returned it. my friend walked past the painting a week later in the window and could have sworn it was my dog, pippin. the "portrait of pippin" now sits proudly on the corner of my desk.
MandyJoBo MandyJoBo 9 years
Color me obsessed. I've had paintings, drawings, felt figures, and bobble heads made in my cats' likeness. A good portion of my decor is stylized photos of my cats. :)
beingtazim beingtazim 9 years
your dog is adorable by the way!
beingtazim beingtazim 9 years
wow - you can make $75 painting something that small in that style? maybe i should put some of my art online and see if it sells! i wonder if the art market is different online than in person, because during a few of the open-studio tours i was a part of people didn't want to spend more than $60 no matter what size the paintings were.
ducks ducks 9 years
I used to do pet portraits. Found it too nerve wracking.
Soniabonya Soniabonya 9 years
I'm an artist and have done several dog portraits 18 X 20 in graphite that generally range from $200 on, depending on background and number of dogs. There is a good market out there for owners wanting drawings or paintings of their beloved pets. As long as the artist can capture the spirit of the pet then it's worth the price. Casa you got a pretty good deal for a 5 x 5 painting. It's not my style, but I like.
gruaig_rua gruaig_rua 9 years
I love my Holly, and I do have lots of photos of her, but I wouldn't get a painting of her.
cindeerella cindeerella 9 years
aww i'd totally do it for my little mocha =)
Angelica Angelica 9 years
I wouldn't do it, but I have a friend that makes a living off taking pet portraits, so I can imagine the paintings are the next natural step.
runnergeek runnergeek 9 years
this is a great idea! i am going to run out of walls to put up stuff, in my tiny apt. but i'd love to have a painting of MAX, that would be so cool!
partysugar partysugar 9 years
One of my best girlfriends is an artist who does still lives of food and dogs. I hate to say it but I find her dog reproductions much more life like than the one pictured above!
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