A dog is never just a pet, they are family. You spend every waking hour with them and they spend their entire lives with you. Everything they do is adorable and you want to cherish every moment you spend with them forever. You can take countless photos and your memory card is probably running out of space. Even though photos are amazing, a more lasting and special tribute to your beloved pet is a dog portrait painting.  


David Hockney

“These two dear little creatures are my friends. They are intelligent, loving, comical, and often bored. They watch me work; I notice the warm shapes they make together, their sadness and their delights.”

-David Hockney

The mentioned quote from 1960s British Pop Art creator Hockney is related to his seminal artworks based on his two pet Dachshunds, Boodgie and Stanley. In 1993, he made more than 83 illustrations of his two dogs, who were his constant companions and who he loved very much.  Through his art, he made his love for his dogs immortal and you can take so much inspiration from him.

Now that you have collected inspiration, you need to get on the next step, which is to capture a cute pose of your dog. If this were a human subject, a painter won’t have any trouble asking them to sit for hours as their portrait is being made. However, a dog subject is a bit difficult to instruct, so it is highly recommended you take a photo of them and then start the painting. No amount of treats will convince your energetic pup to stay still, trust us.

So, here are 25 cute poses for your dog portrait painting:


1. Fun in the fields


Dog pose in the field

I love the fields!

If you are blessed with a field near your house with summer flowers blooming in them, please take advantage of that. Take your pup there on a sunny day and take plenty of photos. Opt for a simple watercolors portrait as the final result.


2. A flower crown queen


Pose with flower crown

I am the queen of this world

Why stop just at a flower field? Put some flowers around your dog’s head as well for a stunning and adorable dog portrait painting in watercolors most preferably.


3. A day at the park


Pose at park

You cant park me

Catch your pup at their happiest when they are playing. A warm toned oil painting would suit this pose and subject well.

4. A beach day

dog pose at beach

I am a Beach-Boy!

Dogs love beach days, so the next time you take them on a trip, remember to take many, many photos that you can turn into either a watercolor painting or an oil painting.


5. A very tired but happy pup

tired dog pose

I am too cute to be tired

If your pup is way too energetic during playtime, then wait till they are slowly getting tired and are going to flop down. A tired but happy dog makes for some cute photos and you can later turn them into a beautiful acrylic dog portrait painting.

6. Tongues out

Dog pose with tongue

I have got the cutest tongue

Be ready as soon as your dog makes a silly face with their tongues poking out. Keep the lighting focused on them and watch the colors in their eyes reflect. Such a photo would then definitely ask to be turned into an oil painting. 


7. A cool dude in sunglasses

pose with shades

Shades suit me

Throw some shades on your pup and have them pose like the cool stud they are. Cute poses like these definitely need to be transformed into stunning watercolor pieces on canvas later.


8. A gentleman at the door

dog having flowers in mouth

I have flowers!

A true gentleman comes knocking with a flower in his hands—pose your dog with a flower in their mouth and keep the tone neutral and muted if using acrylics and turn your dog into a dramatic but cute dog portrait painting


9. The world turned upside down

upside down dog pose

The upside down dog

When your dog is being their goofiest self and flop down on their backs, flip the photo upside down. The resulting image is humorous and looks best when worked with oil paints.

10. So many licks

dog licking lips

I love my lips.

Does your dog always have their tongues out? Capture their silly side. For best results, smear some peanut butter on their noses so they can lick their noses and you get to shoot a good photo that you can later turn into an interesting acrylic dog portrait painting

11. Throw and fetch time

stick in mouth of dog


Playtime is plenty of fun for both you and your pet. Capture the best moments of your dog in acrylic paints with cute poses like your dog with a stick in their mouth.

12. Walk a mile in their shoes

Dogs in shoes

Keep your heels high

If chewing through your shoes is their favorite pastime, then play on it by putting them in a stylish pair of your own. You could keep it classy or you can let them wear shoes they chewed up. Keep the backdrop simple and dark, so you can make the colors in front of pop. Oil may be the best medium for this.


13. Bath time!

Dog bathing

I want a spa!

A wet dog is always hilarious, so on the next bath day, do a small photo shoot from which you can pick and choose which one to turn into a portrait painting. Watercolors are the best medium for such fun, cute poses.

14. Confetti shower


Confetti shower

Colors are raining

If your dog is a particularly good boy, have them sit against a plain background and toss some confetti over their head. Their little surprised faces when the colorful paper pieces flutter over them makes for a wonderful visual, and you can keep the brushstrokes soft when you turn into an oil painting.

15. As cute as a button in onesies

Dog in Onesie

Dog in Onesie

If you can manage to convince your dog to get into a onesie, grab the opportunity to take photos that you can later convert into a simple watercolor or complex oil painting.

16. Purse peek-a-boo

dog in a bag

I am the dog in a bag

Is your dog small enough to fit in a tote? Then put them in a bag to show off how small and cute they are. To keep the fun, cute element going on, opt for watercolors to highlight their smallness. 

17. Have fun with a caricature

Dog's caricature

Dogs caricature

Choose the moment when your dog is being the silliest and turn into a comical sketch. The best part about choosing this medium? You can exaggerate as much as you want!

18. Just the tail end of things

dogs tail to tail

it is a long tail

Sometimes the most unexpected pet moments become the most beautiful ones. Skip focusing on their cute faces and get your dog with their sibling or friend to sit down tail to tail. A simple monochrome painting in acrylic complements the simplicity of this picture.

19. Being a naughty pup

Dog naughty pose

I am not naughty

Is your pup almost up to no good? Then capture their next naughty moment and make a print out of it in simple watercolors or just use colored pens to capture their mischievousness. 

20. Eyes that behold the wonder of the world

Dog eyes

Eyes are the most beautiful

Dogs always tend to look at you with much love, as much love as their small bodies can contain. So, zoom in on their eyes and capture that affection in stark oil colors. 


21. Woof-Diana Jones, the explorer

Dogs on maountais

Doggy the explorer

Does your pup love the outdoors? Then don’t forget to snap some stunning photos the next time you two head out for an adventure. Choose oil paints to create a soft, moody effect. 


22. A happy birthday

Dog Birthday pose

Happy Birthday

Celebrate their birthday by throwing a great party and a festive photo shoot. Don’t forget the cake and balloons! Use the acrylic medium to create a soft, dreamy effect that captures your dog’s cuteness the best.


23. Infectious yawns

Yawning dog

She’s calling, I am yawning!


A yawning dog is the cutest thing ever; no criticism shall be accepted on this. Be prepared to snap at the right time and you can keep it simple or dramatic with the right color palette as you turn it into a dog portrait painting


24. Pop some bubbles

bubble dog pose

Bubbly bubbly

This is going to be a fun photo-shoot for you and your dog. The way lights bounce off a bubble adds so much visual interest and color. The medium of oil painting with a saturated tone is the best for such a pose. 


25. Step inside the frame yourself!

dog owner with dog

I love you Pal

For the best results, and a painting you will even love more, get inside the frame yourself. Snuggle up and put it on a canvas with oil paints and whenever you remember them, you will always the memory of posing for a portrait together. 

Pets often break our hearts because we don’t get to spend all our lives with them, so why not eternally capture a special moment between you and them in beautiful dog portrait paintings?

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