Portrait of a Calico Cat: Elegant and Sophisticated.
Serena’s demeanor is poised, dignified. Her elegant coat glistens in the afternoon sun. She is the picture of sophistication with her head held high as she examines her surroundings.
If she sounds like a runner-up contestant in a beauty queen pageant, then you have the right idea concerning gorgeous Serena.
We adopted Serena from The Feline Café in Ottawa originally from Furry Tales Cat Rescue in November of 2018. We went to visit the cats and that day, I was only planning on enquiring about the adoption process for the future.
There she was, sitting prettily on the green chair, minding her own business while everyone around admired her. It was love at first sight for me. Many hoped to adopt Serena and I filled out the adoption request that same day. I was the lucky person chosen to bring her home.
Serena is very talkative and purrs quite loudly. She loves her food and I swear knows how to tell time becoming very vocal for her meals. Moreover, she loves to be groomed. I only need to show her the brush and she comes running yakking and purring in anticipation.
Truthfully, she has been a very good companion during this pandemic, and I am so grateful that she is with me.
Portrait of a Calico Cat: the process.
All my portraits begin the same way: I receive a request via email through the contact page on my website and a dialogue begins...
While many clients follow me from different Facebook groups, others have seen my work in a friend's home or elsewhere.
Other clients have simply searched online and found my website. These last two years, I have had more than a few repeat customers. 🥰
I always refer clients to the website so that they can decide if my style of portraiture is a good fit for them. In addition, clients can see my price list and read testimonials.
Since the pandemic started, I have been busier than usual and so wait times are longer.
Most people add their names to my waiting list. Clients who want to have their portraits by Christmas will make a first contact by August.
Communication is important.
First and foremost, photos must be clear, well-lit. It is very difficult to paint a pet that looks one colour in one photo, and then other colours in other photos. So I will ask for many photos and choose one as the main reference photo.
Consequently, there is much back and forth, trying to adjust the colours in the fur or eyes, especially when it is a more “realistic” portrait.
Sometimes, the client will have special requests.
For example, one client wanted her cats dressed in suits, another wanted me to add a dog collar to her fur baby, while another requested that I remove a cancerous growth that was evident in the reference photo. A few clients will give me carte blanche.
In Serena’s case, the client had purchased an autumn scene from me in the fall when we met in person for the first time. Shortly after, she contacted me again to paint her calico cat. She wanted a realistic style with purple or green in the background.
I am in constant contact with the client until the portrait is completed and ready to be shipped or picked up.
Portraits come in all sizes
Original art work doesn’t have to break the budget.
Many clients begin with more affordable wood slice portraits of their pets. Fall is a busy time for wood slice portraits as people are already looking ahead to Christmas gift giving.
I sincerely thank everyone who has commissioned me to paint their fur babies. It is an honour to be entrusted with painting an everlasting portrait of your cherished companions.
I also offer other possibilities for purchasing original art including florals. Contact me for unique gifts for any occasion. (More available and not photographed.)