Suggestions

Are you having trouble deciding what you need? Not quite sure what you want? Here are some things to consider when deciding upon a drawing, such as camera angle, background, and optional themes.

None of these are hard-and-fast rules. These are just a few ideas to get you started if you're having trouble deciding what kind of drawing that you want.


Photographs and Digital Photographs

Because children and pets tend to move around a lot, some people use cameras that take a series of pictures rapidly, or they film a video and then take still frames of their favorite shots. If you're not that tech savvy, that's fine. I've gotten plenty of practice merging photos with my own rambunctious toddler.

Camera Angles

Level

Bird' Eye

A Level angle keeps the proportions most in tact and is usually the friendliest angle to work at and the preferred angle to order.

Bird's Eye

Bird' Eye

A Bird's Eye angle gives the appearance of looking down on something, and can distort an image so there is a big ol' nose and a bitty rump on dogs.

Worm's Eye

Worm's Eye

A Worm's Eye angle gives the appearance of looking up at something, and can make your cat appear to look down on you more than usual.

In more humorous and light-hearted photos, such as all the grandchildren sitting on a limb high in a tree or that quick look of surprise the dog gives you after it's decorated your house with the remains of a newspaper or roll of toilet paper.

Foreground and Focus

How much of the person, animal, plant, or object do you want to be shown in the picture? Just the head and shoulders, perhaps the torso, or the full body?

If you do a partial body, there is also the edge to consider. The drawing can go all the way to the edge of the paper. There could be a soft fade. And there can be a shaped fade, such as an oval, square, diamond, or other shape.

Bust

Bust

The bust typically includes the face or the head and shoulders.

Harley, a happy rottweiler.

Torso

Torso

The torso typically will be from waist up or include most of the body.

Lady and her cat.

Full Body

Full Body

The entirety of the subject/foreground is visible.

Callie

The bust view is particularly recommended for very small paper sizes, such as the 5"x7" or smaller.

Edge and Bleed

Full Edge

Full Edge

In a full edge drawing the foreground and/or background extends all the way to the edge of the paper.

Horseback

Soft Edge

Soft Edge

Many artists opt for a soft edge where the foreground or backgrounds blends softly into the unused portion of the paper.

Lady

Shaped Edge

Shaped Edge

The foreground or background adheres to a specific shape or contour, such as a curve, wave, circle, square, diamond, and so forth.

Family Portrait

Background

The background can have a multitude of variations.

Many people just want a plain, simple background. Some want a soft fade from top to bottom, or inner to outer. Some like to have a more mottled background similar to one of the background choices when you go to a portrait studio. On occasion, I am asked to do a patterned background, such as checkers. Sometimes I'm requested to do a partial background, such as a patch of grass. And of course, there is also the full background where a drawing covers the entire paper.

Solid Color

Solid Color

This background is the utmost minimalist. A solid color. Sometimes the raw color of the paper, sometimes colored, or shaded.

Three Dogs

Outer Glow

Outer Glow

The favorite among sketch and charcoal artists. The foreground is encased in black that fades to the natural color of the paper.

One Year Anniversary

Inner Glow

Inner Glow

Another favorite among sketch artists. The foreground is the natural color of the paper and fades to black near the edges of the paper.

Siamese Cat

Gradient Fade

Gradient Fade

A gradient fade often mimics a light source but can also make for dramatic effect. Or simply add some more character to the artwork.

Calvin

Mottled

Mottled

Mottled backgrounds add a bit of character and are easy to achieve with careful blending and shading.

Dog in a Basket

Partial Background

Partial Background

A simple or incomplete background meant to accentuate the foreground without distracting the viewer.

Horseback Couple

Full Background

Full Background

The artwork intends for realism or full immersion of the viewer.

Hannah the English Labrador

Themed Layouts

I find a themed layout a lot of fun to do. These typically involve use of borders to enhance the picture or to include multiple elements dear to the person.

Inner Frame

Inner Frame

A border around the foreground to separate it from the background. It can be simple or decorative.

Air Force Family

Partial Outer Frame

Partial Outer Frame

This is commonly a mirrored design in opposing corners or on opposing sides of the paper.

Beauty

Full Outer Frame

Full Outer Frame

This design follows along the edge of the paper.

Silhouette Frame

Silhouette Frame

This is a very versatile layout. It could be the profile view of a person with their portrait on the inside. The shape of a favorite flower with the favorite pet in the interior. It could be the shape of a deer with the forest drawn within. There are many possibilities.


In this series...

Process
The basic commissioning process from start to finish.
Suggestions
Not quite sure what you want? Here are some things to consider when deciding upon a drawing, such as camera angle, background, and optional themes.
Pricing, Sizes, and Turn Around Time
A guide to the cost of the different sizes and mediums, along with estimated time of completion. I have a page for rough estimates if you would like a quick ballpark figure.
Payment
The accepted payment methods and a few guides to some of them.
Policies
Cancellations, returns, refunds, limitations, and rights of the artist and buyer.
Testimonials
What past buyers have had to say.
Frequently Asked Questions
If you don't find an answer here, feel free to contact me!