I create bespoke, one-off, hand drawn portraits of pets
Hello, I’m Anthea. Welcome to my website.
I live and work, surrounded by nature, in the garden studio of my home in west London, UK.
My love of nature and animals originates from my childhood which was spent on a dairy farm in the West Country. There I spent many happy hours drawing and painting the natural world that surrounded me.
This love to animals continues to this day in my bespoke, hand drawn pet portraits which are created to commission. From dogs and cats to horses, cows and even Guinea Pigs; each one is based on high-resolution digital images supplied by the customer.
So much of an animal’s character is shown in their eyes. I help customers to choose a photograph that really accentuates this feature. Once I have captured that expression in the animal the rest of the portrait often comes together.
The best part for me is to see the reaction of the owners when I present them with the finished drawing of their much-loved pet.
How I got started
Following a degree in art and design, where I specialised in using glass to make lighting accessories, I worked for a lighting company in West London. There I created accessories for their cutting-edge designs, seeing them through to large scale production. However, the recession of the early 90’s led to a change of direction and into a career in the world of travel PR, whilst my drawing practice remained a regular weekend pursuit.
It wasn’t until Covid hit in March 2020 and my travel PR business, which I had taken many years to create, was almost completely eroded in a matter of weeks, that I rekindled my passion for animal drawings and started to seek out commissions for my work and develop this new career, doing what I love.
During the first lockdown I also taught myself to knit and raised money for charity by creating a series of beanies hats for family and friends. I found picking up a pencil and knitting needles was very therapeutic for my mental health at that time and focusing on drawing really helped me to repair the loss of self-esteem I experienced when my travel company was suffering.
My drawings are produced using the highest quality colour pencils, pastels and paper. Following a consultation with the customer we will choose a reference image of the pet and I then set to work to interpret this into a beautiful pencil drawing. I often video the process so that customers can see their artwork coming to life. The final part of the process is a photograph of the artwork which is sent to the customer for approval before the artwork is carefully packaged and shipped to its forever home.
I now also upcycle furniture and breathe new life into treasured heirloom pieces by repairing them and adding beautiful paint effects to items such as decorative mirrors, lamps, tables and cabinets.
in 2020 I upskilled in social media through Tech Pixies and I am CPS certified as a social media provider, specialising in Instagram and Pinterest.
I work with clients all around the world and my work has most recently been featured in Crafts Beautiful magazine.
If you would like to learn more about the prices or commission process please visit the relevant pages.
Please follow my Instagram account @animalartbyanthea for details of my latest projects.