Everyone has a different view of what they are looking for when submitting a photograph to a portrait artist. The artists goal is to paint a beautiful masterpiece out of what he sees. When it comes right down to it, what is it that you ultimately desire in an oil painting? Perhaps the way you always want to remember your pet by, is with all the little imperfections that show off your pets best personality. Or maybe you would like to see your pet finely groomed in the coziest of backgrounds. An artist could create perfect grooming, according to your instructions with, or without the perfect pose. However, the artist has never seen your pet or child in person. Unless the artist is there live, he cannot view your pet or child with your pet from different perspectives. Capturing a great pose is very important for the artist that is painting an oil painting and using the photo as the subject. The best tip we can give to someone who would like an oil painting hand painted using the photo as a subject, is this. What would you like? This is always the first rule.
Pet Portraits “Patience and the Pose"
Not everyone has the patience, time, or endurance to capture the perfect photograph of pets or children with pets. It seems children and pets all have little patience, a mind of their own, and that never appears to be what the impatient photographer is looking for in the perfect pose. This is especially apparent when taking photographs of more than one subject. Here are a few tips to help you capture that perfect moment. We all know that the best portraits seem to almost come naturally. So how do we go about getting a natural portrait? One way, don't miss the perfect pose. Carry your camera with you always. Are you looking for the playful and happy pose? Then be playful. Sometimes the perfect pose depends on your mood, if you're playful, so will your subjects. Think of things that make your pets or children happy. We all know that food is, number 1 with pets and candy number 1 for children. Well this can sometimes be a great lure so if it helps to get them where you want them, by all means cheat a little and use it. Just like children, pets love attention. What about attention getters? Pets love to be talked to, played with, and of course petted. They all just seem to thrive on any form of happy attention, backed by a little love and a lot of praise. For an unpredictable cat, not always the case, of course unless it is their idea. If you haven't tried catnip, we strongly suggest it. For all pets their favorite playful toys always seems to work well. Whatever it is that gets your pet or child in the mood for the type of pose you are looking for. Use it.
Portrait Photos “Preparation When, and Where?"
Try to give yourself “good timing” Directly before, or after a meal may or may not be the best time depending on the type of portrait you are looking for. They think hungry or relax, unfocused or satisfied and you think play and lets take some photos, which may not give you the exact mood, you are looking for. Think about the times in the past that your child or pet has acted the part out and looks the best, then follow that example.
Photo Preparation “Ideas on Grooming and Getting your Pet Ready"
The sun may not be your best type of lighting choice but the sunshine seems to always bring out the best in our furry little friends! Fur perks up and all the little hair follicles seem to stand out perfectly. Also the cold. Have you ever noticed how your pets fur looks after they have been out in the cold. Baths, grooming, and a good old fashion pet shampoo is another favorite for getting perky fur.
Photos, How Many? “What to Keep and What to Throw out"
Take many photos and throw nothing out. Later they may just become more useful than you might be aware of. This requires a little artistic imagination on your part. You may think that because the photo is not centered correctly that the photo is unusable. Not so. If you have a great shot of your pet, it can be edited, zoomed in and centered for what might be the next million dollar pose. What else? For example: Eyes can easily be cut and pasted into a new photo or given to the portrait artist to replace the not so perfect eyes with the perfect ones. Same goes with the rest of your photos that are not worthy of becoming an oil portrait. Each photo is important and may very well be exactly what you are looking for when combining it with another photo. Photo editing programs allow for the removal of the legs, paws, tail, body, background or any part of the photo for future use when presenting to an artist. You might not think something is worth keeping but later may very well be the perfect fit for a specific pose. Remember! Hard drive space is cheap. Losing memories and recreating what you once had can be time-consuming and expensive.
Portrait Backgrounds “Ideas"
Ask yourself this question. Do I want a studio, detailed still background, or do I want a natural environment background? All produce great portraits. You may either take your pet to the background or bring the background to the pet. If you want to try something with endless possibilities, here is a tip that you may like to know. Choose a photo of a great background from your photo inventory or search the web for ideas. There are thousands and thousands of royalty free backgrounds, paintings or pictures available for you to use as you like. Here is a site that you may find useful http://www.ibiblio.org Whether you are using a background for creating a photo portrait or in preparation for an oil painting portrait, any background can be removed and replaced. However, for the very best results try to use a contrasting background color. Plain white or very light backgrounds for darker colored pets or a plain dark background for lighter colored pets. For multi colored pets, try to use a color that is contrasting to their colors. For children? It is best not to use too dark of a background for a child that has dark hair or an off white background for a child wearing a similar color T-shirt-shirt. Why? Whether this is for editing a photo portrait to add a different background or for combining photos and backgrounds into an oil painting, it is much easier for photo editing or much easier for the artist to capture even the finest of details of your pet or child.
Final Portrait Preparation “Putting it all Together"
If you have a little bit of time and experience with basic cut and paste editing procedures combined with a little knowledge on photo editing programs, you too can easily create an unforgettable beginning to a piece of fine art and originality. Here is one of the webs best kept secrets on paint editing software. http://www.getpaint.net This is a free open source editing program that is really very easy to use once you have mastered a few minor tools.
Doug Ames http://www.anythingpaintedoncanvas.com