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A little about the company is a specialized art platform that was founded by Assaf Kostiner in 2006 as a collective of painters in a studio that focused on handmade oil paintings.

It developed with professional input and reorganization into what it is today – an adaptive team of painters under a transformative leadership that values openness, creative thinking, open-mindedness, and participative stewardship during decision-making.

The company has a showroom in North Miami Beach in Florida where people can view their art pieces, and also interact with company representatives, as well as place orders for their art.

Background of the artists

Professionalism demands that its painters be acquainted with several art philosophies, as well as be experienced in using more than one philosophy in their careers.

This builds the knowledge-base and skillset of the (painter) workforce of PaintYourLife and has enabled it to serve over 30,000 clients, as well as gain a fitting reputation as a reliable and professional company dedicated to providing exceptional value and high-quality service to its clients.

Furthermore, professional experience allows this company to offer art consultation services and graphic design services.

In fact, another brand associated with is PopArta which focuses on graphic design and manual editing of paintings.

No Questions asked 100% Money Back Guarantee

There is also a money-back guarantee with no unnecessary, inappropriate, or stalling questions asked.

This company is committed to providing high-quality paintings, excellent service delivery, and fair pricing so as to ensure that its products are affordable.

Besides offering optimal customization and uniqueness in their art.

The prices and estimated turn-around time are provided under the pricing & timing menu tab on the website.

Is ordering a portrait from Paint YourWhat’s it like to order from Paint Your Life?

Paint Your Life shared with me via email the process of turning my photo (far left) into a painted portrait.

The ordering process hand-holds you through every decision, from choosing the medium and finished size, as well as what makes a good reference photo for the artist to use. Each step has written explanations and visual examples. For several of the options, you may elect to let the service make decisions for you, which is what I did whenever asked.

First, I let the site assign my artist. I could’ve scroll through galleries of example art to see whose style I liked best, but it seems to me that most Paint Your Life artists employ a fairly realistic perspective, and any nuances among them would be beyond my amateur eye. Second, I couldn’t decide which photo of several favorites I wanted painted, so I opted to let the artist pick that, as well as whether the background would be painted in detail or rendered a solid color.

In total, I offered up four photos (two shown) for the Paint Your Life artist to select among.

The order form also has a spot to include any notes you’d like to share with the artist. I noted that I would like them to “edit out any clutter” if they elected to retain the background, and that I didn’t want his harness included in the painting, if they chose this one photo of Gus poised on a stool, belly-up to a local dog-friendly bar.

Within just one day, I received an email indicating that my photo had been “edited” for my approval, with a note explaining that this was not my painting, but just a cleaned-up version of the reference photo the artist would use. It was an iteration of the bar photo … with the background removed—I mean, a dog in a bar was kinda the point!—and the undesired harness still very much in place. Disappointed, I replied that I didn’t care for this image and requested they try again with one of a couple of new photos.

The first photo that Paint Your Life chose for my dog portrait was this shot. Unfortunately, I didn’t like the preview image, which took Gus out of the bar.

Success! The new “edited” photo, delivered about two days later, looked remarkably similar to the photo I’d uploaded of Gus sitting solo on a sidewalk, which I’d chosen expressly because it had no significant background or a harness to gum up the works. I “accepted” and the painting commenced.

At each step in the process, Paint Your Life kept me posted, with clear expectations for the timing of the delivery of my artwork, as long as I held up my end of the bargain to watch for emails that requested my approval. I was sent an email with an image of my painting in process just a day after OK’ing the reference photo. And within seven days of placing my order, I was sent a photo of the finished artwork to approve. The painting then had to finish drying (it’s oil paint) and be framed, which took a few more days. It was shipped via FedEx 16 days after I placed my order.

Is a Paint Your Life painting any good?

The Paint Your Life artist took care with the details such as the color and texture of the fur, but somehow an actual hair got embedded in the paint, too.

Full disclosure: We tested the Paint Your Life service before COVID happened. I had the portrait shipped to the Reviewed offices in Cambridge, Mass., so it could be photographed by our pro photographers. But I do not live in Cambridge—I live in the U.S. Virgin Islands. I’d planned a trip to visit in April, during which I (and Gus) would’ve visited the painting and fully inspected the artwork. To date, I have not gotten on a plane to go anywhere. And so, I must rely on Reviewed staffers who have been to the office in the past six months for their reactions to the portrait.

Luckily, one of those such people is staff photographer Betsey Goldwasser, who most certainly has a better artistic eye than I. And she is impressed:

“I think it’s a really nice painting overall! It is made up of well-painted brush strokes with proper angle, depth, and coloring. There aren’t any major blobs of paint or glaring mistakes. They warmed up the colors a bit [from the reference photo] to make his coloring pop more, but I’m biased to prefer a slightly warmer photo/picture anyway. I think it’s a good representation of Gus with a little bit of artistic liberty with making the concrete background less ugly (no offense to the concrete background). It has nice details in the fur, too!”

Her only quibbles are just that—minor. She noticed a hair stuck in the paint—possibly a dog hair?—but said it didn’t detract and maybe even adds to the authenticity. After I mentioned that his fluffy toes appear to have been “trimmed” by the artist, she suggested it was “a little airbrushed, but I also feel that’s the sort of thing [over-long, Grinch-like foot hair] that an artist wouldn’t pick up on as special or important to a dog owner … they might see something as a flaw that is actually not.”

Another thing that I can’t exactly tell from the photos of the painting, which several coworkers noted: It’s large. One compared it to a shrine, while another suggested my dog “might be a despot-in-training.” Yet, curiously, it’s not the exact measurements I ordered. I chose 20 inches by 24 inches, but the canvas measures 17.5 inches by 25.5 inches (the frame adds the expected three inches total to each dimension). This is not a, er, huge deal, but had I already owned a frame for it or had a very specific spot I wanted to hang it, the difference might matter.

What’s more, Paint Your Life has an option for custom size paintings, of any dimensions between 8 inches by 10 inches and 48 inches by 72 inches. Even more curiously, when I priced out the dimensions I received, it would’ve cost $6 less than the dimensions I ordered. After the initial publication of this review, a rep from Paint Your Life reached out to me regarding the sizing snafu, explaining that any such changes should have been run by me, and that the company has since “adjusted our internal processes to ensure that any changes in size are communicated to the customer.”

Is ordering a portrait from Paint Your Life worth it?

The finished artwork (right) is a pretty accurate likeness to the original photo, with some details softened and others refined.

All nitpicks aside, everyone who’s seen the portrait thinks it’s well done. Notes senior scientist Julia MacDougall, who’s watched over by painted Gus in the Reviewed labs as she goes about testing products: “It’s a really great portrait, honestly. It grabs my attention every time I see it, even though it’s hung well above my normal line of sight.”

Betsey adds, “I’d say if you really feel like your dog is a part of your family, which most dog owners feel, I can see getting this portrait to go alongside your human portraits or photographs.”

As for me, my only real complaint is that I yet haven’t reveled in the glory of my now-immortalized pup, whose visage shall grace Reviewed offices for years to come. (I’m not personally permitted to keep the painting, as we writers have a no-profit policy regarding anything we review.) Would I have spent my own nearly $500 to have such artwork done for myself? Honestly, it’s hard for me to say.

It seems extravagant to me to have any massive artwork (even, say, a $20 printed photo poster) on prominent display, and I’m not one to print out four-by-six snapshots to frame. Based on the reactions to the size of this specific portrait, I think I’d go smaller. (After all, Gus himself is only about 24 inches long.) Not to mention, Gus is still very much alive and well, and I refuse to think about what I might choose to do after he’s passed on. But could I see recommending the service to someone who wants such a keepsake, whether of a pet or a family member? I can’t see why not.

Latest Paint Your Life Features

Paint Your Life has recently been adding new features to give customers greater choice when ordering their artwork. One such feature is called Poor Photos to Masterpieces. I have written in-depth about this option here, as I used it to great effect on one of my latest orders from Paint Your Life.

However, it is definitely worth taking a quick look now at what it offers.

Poor Photographs to Masterpieces

The above example shows where two old photographs have been used and combined to create an oil painting. Poor photographs to masterpieces essentially mean you can use images that may be slightly damaged, aged, or even blurry to create your artwork.

The artist is able to use the image (or images in this case) and even colorize them. Here, it is likely that the couple has passed away, (the individuals are of advanced age in the photographs and the images were clearly taken a long time ago).

This means that some emotionally powerful artwork can be created. It gives you the opportunity to make beautiful art of loved ones that may no longer be with you.

Compilation Portraits

Compilation Portraits is another great feature that is quite self-explanatory. It basically means that several images can be combined to create one piece of art.

In this example, colorization has also been employed. The scope of this is wide. You can combine images of loved ones stretching across different generations, or add people to a memory even if they were not there.

Ultimately, it allows you to bring the images of many special people into one finished piece.

It is also important to remember that you can utilize different mediums along with these features. Whether you want pencil art, charcoal, oils, or any of the other medium options, the artist you choose will be able to deliver.

Adding Motifs

Another feature you can opt for is to add different motifs or effects to your finished art. I personally am not a fan of this, (the examples I have seen didn’t appeal to me, put it that way), however, art is all down to personal taste.

In the example above wings and halos have been added to the finished oil painting. The example below shows that a different background has been used.

The fact that I find these a bit kitsch, doesn’t detract from these features being a good thing. They give customers greater choice and freedom to have artwork made that speaks to them.

A Perfect Gift – Customer Reactions

Online Gallery of Examples

Image Credit: (Artist: Doris)

The online gallery features professional paintings done by different painters, with each painting captioned by the name of the painter, with an additional hyperlinked option that allows one to select that painter to work on his/her project.

Moreover, some clients allow their paintings to be showcased in this online gallery so that one can see the varied artistic tastes of different clients.

Relatedly, it is by reviewing this gallery that one can appreciate the level of photorealism captured in the paintings, with more refined and detailed paintings closely approximating hyperrealism.

Furthermore, there is pencil art which shows that the painters are flexible and adaptable to client needs, and can adequately match the artistic needs of their clients to different graphic art forms. Relatedly, this allows art enthusiasts and geeks to provide instructions for painters to blend different art philosophies into a single painting.

There is also a need to mention an issue that some clients experience when using the chat service provided on the website.

If the client decides to chat directly with the painter, then it is imperative that (s)he keeps in mind that some painters come from a non-English-speaking background, and this can create communication difficulties, especially if the client uses American lingo when chatting with the painter.

In Summary

PaintYourLife is a company dedicated to creating hand-made art – mainly paintings and portraits – from photographs.

Its high-quality paintings preserve and add artistic value to memorable events, and they can also be used as home décor, gifts, or exhibits in an art gallery.

Regarding business practices, it is committed to providing high-quality paintings, exceptional service delivery, and fair pricing so as to ensure that its products are affordable; besides offering optimal customization in its art.

Also, to ensure that the customer receives the right painting, there is an option of online proof. Furthermore, there is a multi-tiered, peer-based quality control process that ensures that a painting is reviewed and appraised by other painters in order to certify that it matches the level of professionalism expected by the company and its clients.

Additionally, to simplify the delivery process, the framed paintings are shipped free of charge. This is complemented by a transparent refund policy.

The main paint pigments used are oil, acrylic, and charcoal. Watercolor paints and pastel are also available, along with pencil art.

Its Easy 1-2-3 Wizard request processing portal allows for straightforward and transparent processing of client requests, as well as providing each client with unique login credentials that are to be used during follow-up or when requesting revisions.

Overall the service is an excellent, fool-proof way of immortalizing wonderful memories in the form of quality pieces of artwork.

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