After college, I was in a trade show with drawings from my sketch books that were printed onto wooden blocks. The blocks were cut out with a bandsaw following the shape of the drawing. While I had a few
loyal customers, it was challenging to build blocks into a business.

Fortunately, one small antique shop in Osaka, Japan took a special interest in what I was doing. They flew me over to Osaka for an NYC fair with the job of drawing New York City icons on the spot for their customers. I painted rapidfire images of the Statue of Liberty and the Empire State Building on cardboard, which apparently made me an authentic “NYC Artist.” Note: I was born and
raised in NYC and I do like to think of myself as an authentic person!

As the week went on at the fair, people began to ask me to draw
their cats and dogs. Of course, everyone had hundreds of photos of their beloved pets ready to show me on their phones.

I had never painted a dog or cat before, but I immediately loved painting their funny and expressive faces. Not one animal was the same. One could say it was an a-ha moment in my life as an artist, because these pets were way more interesting than painting the Statue of Liberty on repeat.

And so my career as a pet portrait artist began, right there, in a mall in Osaka.

Back in New York City, I took up residency as an in-house pet portrait artist at Fishs Eddy, the famous tableware store in NYC. It’s been an amazing five years with thousands of pets painted, along with some less predictable
ones such as donkeys, turtles, bulls, spiders, and even a few crabs!

PS. The irony of my entire story is that I’m incredibly allergic to
dogs and cats, but by some crazy happenstance I have found a
way to be around them all the time, with no inhaler needed!.


I’m Ben Lenovitz, a pet portrait artist working out of the in-house gallery at the home store Fishs Eddy, NYC. Along with painting on-the-spot portraits at the store, I have also done many workshops and pet portrait events for brands such as Facebook, Liberty London, CNN, and Bark Box. I’ve also gone several times to Japan and London to paint pet portraits.


I paint pet portraits from photos
sent to my phone. Each painting
takes about 20 minutes to
complete and another 10 minutes
to dry. These portraits are 19x14
-or a smaller size of 10x14 to
paint more portraits an hour.


I send sample portraits to be
hung before the event date and
create custom signage. Set up is
very quick and easy as these
portraits are painted on cardboard


The pet portraits are painted in
acrylic and graphite on cardboard.
Sizes are 10x14 and 19x14. The
cardboard has curved edges.


I have frames that fit both
cardboard sizes: 11x15 and 20x15
with a chip board border. Frame
are 1” thick black, white or
gold frames and 2” reclaimed
barnwood with museum grade
glass. I often frame portraits
on the spot at events


For some events, I do speed portraits where I do about 15-20 portrait per an hour on 10x14 cardboard. These paintings do not include the blue backgrounds but do include the pet’s name. They are much more painterly. I work on an hourly rate when doing an event in this format.