It's All About the Animals

making a living creating art

making a living creating art

I am thrilled that thousands of people honor their love for animals by displaying Old World Pet Portraits in their homes. You are as crazy about animals as I am…….You are my people!!

Carol Lew
Old World Pet Portraits

Almost 20 years ago, I dared to think that I could make a living creating art.

 At the time, I had just left a stressful management job, and I had some soul searching to do. I made a “vision board” where home was surrounded by animals, art, and nature. The idea seemed far out of reach, but I put on my big girl pants and went about figuring out how to make my vision a reality. I’d studied art at Philadelphia College of Art decades before, but hadn’t done anything with my training for a very long time.

I dusted off my skills and got to work creating a concept that makes a statement I feel deep in my heart; Animals are as worthy of respect and honor as humans are.

The part of my work I enjoy the most….is interacting with people who love their pets as much as I love mine. And the animals? Well, I hear some deeply touching stories told by those who love them most. I am honored to be able to capture their essence in portraits that will grace walls long after the animals’ passing.

My next favorite thing...

… is that I have the flexibility to volunteer with animal rescue missions. I’ve fostered hundreds of kittens in our laundry room, otherwise known as “Aunt Carol’s Kitty Camp”. I’ve been involved with local shelters for many years, and I help feral cats through TNR (Trap Neuter Return). Our own animals have been adopted from shelters and rescue groups, and we love them all the more for the hardships we know they’ve been through.

foster volunteer

But let me tell you a little story about Clem the Clumber Spaniel... 

pet portraits

He was an elderly dog by the time his people commissioned a portrait of him. As is customary, they sent me photos and described him so that I could capture his essence in the portrait. One of the photos was of Clem with three tennis balls in his mouth. His person wrote: “he’s older now so he doesn’t chase them quite so much, but on a good day, he can still fit three in his mouth.” I still think about that.

When life gets complicated and I feel in over my head, I try to remember that there’s plenty of joy in the simple things of life. And even though my life may not always include my favorite things, there will still be three-tennis-ball days.