Custom Portrait: painting of a Boy and His Cat

“Boy and His Cat
Original painting by BZTAT

Recently, a woman I met on Twitter (@Zissy4PetTalez) asked me if I could paint a portrait of her grandson and his cat as a gift for him. With some trepidation, I said yes.

I have been an animal painter for as long as I can remember. Painting people has never really been an interest of mine, so I never really explored that genre artistically. When I began using Photoshop, however, I realized that I could design some portraiture images that I kind of liked.

“Jack” Digital Photo by BZTAT

I created this picture when a woman asked me to create an image of her dog. Her nephew came along for the photo-shoot, and his mother asked me to do an image of him as well. I was quite surprised when it turned out so well!

I liked it so much, I used it for the basis for a painting that I did for the Domestic Violence Project in Canton, OH. The painting was selected for the Best in Show Award.

“Rediscovery” by BZTAT

So when my friend from Twitter asked me to do her grandson, I was a little nervous, but I had been successful with one child portrait, so I had a little bit of confidence to do it.

The cat was quite easy to paint. The boy did present some challenges for me. He kept looking sort of cartoonish to me, which I did not want. There is a fine line between whimsical, abstract, and cartoonish. I wanted to stay on the side of whimsical and abstract, but still capture a likeness of him.

I struggled with this painting more than most, because of these challenges, but then, I do tend to fuss about all of them…Anyway, once I finally finished it, I was pretty happy with the result. So was the boy when he received his gift!

Now, I feel much more confident about doing child portraits. It’s a good thing. Another Twitter friend has asked me to paint a picture of her daughter and her pug! Here is a sneak peak of the Cookie Monster (still in progress), commissioned by @BayChildCare on Twitter! (For the child’s security, I am only posting the image of the dog, per her mother’s request.)

Would you like a custom pet portrait of your pet? BZTAT will paint your animal for a very reasonable price. For information, email her at

Info about pet portrait prices can be found here.

Life is an Adventure!

Art Adventures Studios
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Art Adventures Studios, located in downtown Canton, OH near Second April Galerie and the historic Joseph Saxton Gallery of Photography.