Creating Your Portrait

It's very important to me that your ideas come to life! But the tricky part is where to start. 


You've got a couple of photos, some brief ideas, but you don't have the artistic ability to draw them down. A good place to start is with a dot point list, it might look something like this;

  • Me and my children

  • Using the best photos of each of us

  • Some vibrant "splashy" designs to make it fun and decorative 

  • Big so that it stands out in the room

  • Without my hair covering my face

Another option is to do a rough sketch on a piece of paper, it doesn't matter if it looks pretty, if it maps out where you'd like things in the portrait and a rough idea of scale then that's perfect!

Watercolour Paint Portrait

Watercolour Portrait - Father's Day Sunset

Graphite Pencil Portrait

Graphite Portrait - Wedding with all of the Family


If you're still feeling unsure about it, a second opinion always helps. I'm always here to chat about your ideas, it's my job to do this and I love the creativity that emerges from these conversations. You can also ask family, friends and colleagues if you know someone who has an eye for art!


From there you can start to gather up some photos and send them through, you can leave it up to me to choose which photos will incorporate best into the portrait together, or tell me which ones you like the most. Often it is left up to me as I can work with mapping out the portrait, maneuvering elements around to capture the most realistic perspective, lighting, and composition. 

High Quality Photographs

Higher resolution photos are preferred, but not entirely necessary. Sometimes you only have old photographs, especially for those who are no longer with us. That's okay, I'll do my best with what we've got, and I can also use multiple photographs of one person to find details and merge them into one portrait. 

Change of Mind

It's okay to change your mind on elements of the portrait throughout the process, however, it's important to remember that once the painting and drawing process has commenced there is not always an infinite amount of erasing. Paper is tainted the moment pencil touches it, and it can never go back to pure white again. Paint works in layers and can become textured with more layers. So, having a robust plan from the get-go is the most effective way.

Check out the Gallery

It can help to see other portraits that have been done to jog your thoughts and ideas. Visit the Portraits Gallery to see the mediums available, how they look, and the types of pictures that have been created by TPP clients in the past.

Create Meaning

There can be subtle elements incorporated that mean the world to someone. Even something as little as placing your wedding date on the registration plate, or bringing a loved one who has passed away into the present to be at your Wedding day. These stories are what move people, and I cannot help but feel my heart and emotions when I'm drawing or painting these beautiful stories. 

Oil Paint Portrait

Oil Portrait - A wedding day gift to her husband

Oil and Acrylic Portrait

Push the Boundaries

There are no rules in creativity, if you'd like a decorative element to your portrait that isn't photorealistic, such as a paint splatter background, text, words, abstract styles, contact me! 

Oil Portrait on Acrylic Background - Gorilla sucking his thumb

Frenchie Portrait
Frenchie compilation

Sending through multiple reference photos


This is very useful for the details in your portrait. Tam can see different elements of details in each photograph which informs a more detailed finished portrait.

Graphite Portrait - Coco the newest member of the Family