Questions as you’re preparing to commission your pet portrait? Good chance you’ll find an answer below.

Click an option below to go to the category you’re interested in, or just scroll to see it all. Got a question I haven’t yet answered? No problem at all – just get in touch and I’ll respond with the info you need.


How do you paint your pet portraits?

All pet paintings are hand-painted by me using professional grade, heavy body acrylic (water- based) paint on 7/8 inch deep, back-stapled, standard stretched canvas ready to frame. I use your photos of your pet for reference when painting. Good quality photos will result in the best pet paintings as I can capture more detail.

Does photo quality matter? If so, how do I take good pictures of my pet?

Better reference photos do translate to superior pet portrait paintings! With that in mind:

  1. Shoot from your pet’s eye level by sitting or lying on the floor. Try not to take the photo from above your pet as such photos are often disappointing.
  2. Use natural lighting, either outside or indoors by the light of a nearby window. Avoid flash.
  3. Get close to your pet and focus on their eyes.
  4. Be patient. Have someone attract your pet’s attention behind you while you shoot or hold a treat in your hand close to the camera. Try making a high pitched tone or whistle to get your pet in an alert pose.

If I want more than one pet on the same canvas, do they need to be in the same picture together?

No. Just send me your favorite shots of all the pets you’d like included and I can combine them in the artwork so that they’re all in the same piece. If you can send at least one photo depicting the size ratios between the pets that would be most helpful. For each additional pet in one painting, add an extra $50 to the base price.

Do you offer framing for your pet portraits?

I do not currently offer framing; however I can recommend you try a local custom framer or, for a more affordable option, visit your local craft store like Michaels, Hobby Lobby, AC Moore, Aaron Brothers, etc. to purchase off the rack, open back ready-made frames. Check your local store’s website for 40% coupons or 50% off sales and coupons.

Pricing & Payments

What is the cost to commission A Custom pet portrait?

Prices depend on the size of canvas you choose, as well as the number of pets in the painting. Below is a price list for standard sizes I offer, but I can provide a quote for any additional size you wish.

Size1 Pet2 Pets3 Pets4 Pets5 Pets
3-4″ Wood Slice Ornament$50
5×7 or 6×6$150

What payment Methods do you accept?

I currently accept PayPal, money orders and checks. PayPal offers paying with credit cards without an account. Please allow time for your check to clear before the painting can ship.


What is the process to Commission a pet portrait?

You can easily commission a pet portrait painting of your pet. Here’s how it works:

  1. Select your options, upload your photo(s), and submit your order. If you would rather order via telephone or email, I can be reached at 607.345.7628 or melissa{at}melissasmithart.com.
  2. I will contact you via email if I have any questions about your order details then will have the painting complete in 7-14 days, depending on my workload.
  3. I will email you a digital proof of the final painting for your approval at which point I will work on any requested small changes until you are 100% happy with the painting.
  4. Upon your final approval, I will ship the painting to you.

How long will it take to complete my custom pet portrait?

The turnaround time depends on how many portraits I am currently working on, but I can typically complete a painting in 7-14 days. All pet portrait paintings are done in the order I receive them. I will let you know the approximate wait at the time of your order. If you have a special date you need it by just let me know and I will advise if I can accommodate (I usually can!).

Can I request changes to the pet painting after I see the digital proof?

Yes, reasonable alterations can be requested to the painting until you are 100% satisfied at no charge. I want you to be happy!


How much is shipping?

Shipping is free within the continental United States. I ship USPS Priority for smaller pet paintings and UPS Ground for medium to larger pet paintings. All paintings are insured. Please excuse the second hand packing material as I try to use all recycled materials for my packaging to do my part for the environment!

Do you ship internationally?

Yes I can ship internationally for at cost via regular postal service. Additional custom fees may apply when you pickup the package from the postal service. I have no way of knowing this amount and therefore am not responsible for any custom charges that may be owed. If ordering from another country, please note all my measurements are in inches and prices are in US Dollars.

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