Dog Portraits Review - A Merryvaluation
The decision to get a custom portrait done of your pet is a big one, but we've found it's an incredibly rewarding experience. Having the final product hanging on your wall is a wonderful conversation piece, a daily reminder of how adorable your pet is (or was, if they've sadly passed on) and a unique piece of art for your home.
So when talented Alina Kremer from Michi Designs spoke with us about doing a portrait of Merry, we were excited to get started.
The one thing we've learned over the years is that every artist is different. Not just in their choice of materials, not just in their painting style, but also in the process you need to go through to get to the final product. Some artists prefer to take the photos themselves, some can work from your photos, some have forms to fill out, others prefer to chat by phone or email.
It's a learning experience every time! :)
Alina spoke with us by phone to discuss general ideas for the painting - since the princess's signature color is pink, we always prefer to have a touch of pink in there somewhere. She also went over how long it would take (a few weeks) and what the next steps would be:
1. Choose a picture
2. Get 50% of the fee as a deposit
3. See a photo of the final work, before shipping (to see if you want any changes)
We worked together to choose some photos - luckily, we have a huge selection in the Merrylog for our artists to choose from, but even for the average pet owner, it's a good idea to send at least a few different poses/backgrounds for the artist to choose from. You'll find the finished product is much better if you allow the artist some choice, so they can pick something that really resonates with them and gives them ideas.
Once a final photo was selected (see the last photo in this review), we also sent along a few "alternates" from that photo shoot - photos that weren't as good, but featured the same couch and pink necklace - so that Alina had lots to work with. We made sure to send the absolute largest sizes of these photos that we had, so she had as much detail at her disposal as she needed.
A few weeks later we were thrilled to see a photo of the final product sent to us via email. How pink! We couldn't wait to see it in person.
Once the piece arrived, we were over the moon. This artwork is truly lovely - the photos just don't do it justice.
The final piece was done on a 10" x 10" archival cotton canvas with a 1 1/2" deep wrapped edge. The edge is painted a solid color (black, in this case) so the painting is ready to hang from the moment you receive it. All the work is done in acrylic.
One of the things we loved best about the pet portrait was the undertone of red throughout. You can't see it too heavily anywhere, but it's like an undertone, an accent, throughout the entire painting. It really makes not just the background but also Merry's features really stand out.
The colors are mostly true-to-life and yet the painting is not just a copy but a real artistic interpretation. The fur is colored wonderfully but is soft - almost an impressionistic representation. We particularly loved how the necklace really "sparkled" in the final piece - far more so than in the original photograph!
Alina Kremer's work was simply spectacular. This is a truly outstanding piece of art that we're going to be thrilled to have for years to come.
You can find out more about Michi Design from their web site at www.alinakremer.com.