Frequently Asked Questions - FAQs


What art materials do you use?

All of my artwork is created using archival quality paper and mediums. For pastel artwork, I use a variety of professional brands including Faber-Castell, Terry Ludwig, Sennelier, and Unison. I like to experiment with various types of pastel paper, but currently I favorite PastelMat and UArt sanded paper. For other mediums such as watercolor, charcoal, and ink; all are professional and lightfast and all of my paper is archival grade and acid-free. When you receive my artwork, it will come enclosed in an acid-free sleeve. This will protect the artwork until it can be matted and/or framed. All artwork should be handled with care. With proper care, your artwork should last a lifetime.


Is your art archival quality?

All original art and giclee prints are created with lightfast, archival mediums on acid-free paper and will be enclosed in a clear acid-free sleeve to prevent discoloring and fading. For best results, store the art in the clear sleeve until ready to frame.


Do you require a professional reference photo?

A professional photo of your is always welcome, but not necessary! You can take wonderfully detailed photos of your with just your camera phone and some good lighting. See my Pet Reference Photo Guide on how to do this for pets. The same will apply with human subjects (although the treat bribe is optional).


My pet is deceased and I have limited photos, can you work with them?

Creating highly-detailed pet portraits requires a reference photo with details. If the photos are blurry or have poor lighting, I may not be able to use them as a reference. The same goes for human subjects. I cannot paint what I cannot see. Imagine someone trying to recreate your portrait from a poor photo - it would be a bad representation at best. My suggestion is to gather your best photos and Contact me to determine if I am able to work with them.


How many subjects can you paint on one portrait?

This depends on the size of the portrait. There is an additional charge for more than one subject. It is preferable that the reference photo contains both subjects to ensure proper angle and lighting; but sometimes I can work with individual photos. Contact me for pricing and to see if I can work with your photos.


Can you paint me a wildlife portrait?

Absolutely! Just send me an email and let me know what size and animal you would like me to paint for you and I will work with you on finding a reference photo.


Do you paint in backgrounds for portraits?

Yes! I can use the background in the photo or I can create a colored background, or some combination. Some clients like the clean look of just a white background. You can view examples in my Galleries. Simple backgrounds are included in the price of the portrait. More complex backgrounds may be subject to an additional fee. Detailed backgrounds that are not part of the reference photo (i.e. if you wanted a marsh behind your hunting dog when the reference photo is him sitting on a couch) may be possible in some situations. Inquire and I will work with you on creating what you want.


How far out are you booked for commissions?

My waiting time for pet portraits varies depending on the time of year. October through December tends to be the busiest times as I book quickly for Christmas delivery. A deposit will secure a date for your portrait on my calendar. You can view prices and deposits on my Commission page.


How long does it take you to complete a painting?

Commission completion time varies depending on the size of the painting, the number of subjects, and the level of detail of a background. An 11x14 bust-shot with a plain background typically takes about 4-5 days. An 11x14 of a pup in a garden may take 2 weeks. If you require a pet portrait for a specific holiday or occasion, I highly recommend that you commission the portrait at least a month in advance (further out for Christmas delivery) to ensure it is completed in time for your event.


How do you ship artwork and how long does it take?

Completed artwork is shipped within 3 business days after final approval via USPS Priority Mail with tracking and insurance. Delivery times can take up to 3 days for domestic and approximately 10-14 days for International shipping. All artwork is packaged in an acid-free sleeve and surrounded with cardboard or chipboard to prevent bending.


Do you ship Internationally (outside of the US)?

Yes! I ship to clients all over the world. Shipping is calculated based on USPS prices by zip code, plus packaging fees. I will quote shipping prices prior to the start of the artwork.


What form of payments do you take?

I currently use PayPal to invoice. I will send you an invoice via email which will allow you to make a secure payment using a credit card or your bank account. You do not need a PayPal account to make a payment. I do not accept check or cash.


What happens if my art arrives damaged?

All artwork is shipped with insurance. If your artwork arrives damaged, immediately photograph the damage and Contact me.


What is your cancellation policy?

My cancellation policies can be found in the section Terms and Conditions.


Do I need to have my art professionally framed?

You will always get the best results and longevity when having artwork professionally framed and matted, but it isn’t required. If framing yourself, be sure the pastel is secure against the glass to reduce pastel dust. If using a mat, I recommend securing the pastel to the mat with acid-free tape (Scotch makes an acid-free clear tape).


I noticed pastel dust when I opened my painting, is this normal?

It is very normal for there to be residual pastel dust from a pastel painting. Just remember to never touch the surface and never bend or fold the artwork. It is recommended that the art is kept in the acid-free envelope that it comes in until it can be framed.


Do you offer gift wrap services?

Yes! I am happy to gift wrap your order and add a custom card. My cards are 5x7 and will have your pet portrait on the front with a customized message inside. I offer this service for $5 USD.


Can I make copies of your art?

Guildbrook Art retains full copyright on all artwork that is produced including commissions, mock-ups, and prints and; therefore no artwork may be reproduced without permission. All artwork is scanned and kept on file. Additional prints, cards, or other media can be purchased through Guildbrook Art. Commissioned artwork will not be sold commercially and prints can only be purchased by the original purchaser. Unless otherwise agreed upon, Guildbrook Art reserves the right to use all art for marketing purposes; including websites and social media platforms.


Can I purchase a print of my commission?

Yes! If you would like additional prints of your commission, I can create those for you. All giclees are printed on acid-free paper with an inkjet printer using archival ink. Each print is shipped inside a clear, acid-free sleeve. Price will depend on the size of the print.


Do you paint human portraits?

Yes! As with pet portraits, I am highly dependent on a good reference photo. Send me an email with your photo reference and what you are looking to have done and we can go from there!