rough sketch of a black man
more detailed sketch of a black man

Capturing the personality of my subject is essential to me.
I believe the quality and special attention to fine detail should play an important role in portraiture.
Therefore I do my best to live up to my customers’ satisfaction.


I enjoy working with people of all walks of life and of different ethnicities as you can judge by my work. I prefer to paint in oil on stretched canvas or canvas board, but will be happy to work with other mediums if it’s your preferred choice. My prices are affordable too. So If you would like to commission a portrait (person or pet) or any other artwork, or would like more information please use the contact form or email me.


What I need from you is minimum of 4 high quality photos for reference without ‘red’ or ‘flash’ eye and ideally taken from different angles along with an outline of ideas of what you would like and expect along with any deadline you have. Please note that the process of oil painting usually takes 4-6 weeks to complete (it requires at least 2 weeks for oils to dry and settle). If you have an earlier deadline I’ll try to accommodate it whenever possible.

After I finish I will email you a good quality photo of your portrait for approval. Once you are completely satisfied pay the remaining balance. Shortly after I will dispatch your portrait.

If you would like to order a group portrait of up to 5 people, please email me for further discussion.


I paint predominantly on fine weave bespoke canvasses or canvas boards. I use only high quality brushes and oil paints ranging from Windsor and Newton or Michael Harding to Sennelier.


My standard prices for a single subject ( oil on canvas/ board)  start at £700 for a head and shoulders sized 16x12ins (40x30cm) portraits. For double subject (oil on canvas/board) portraits please add 100 % of a single subject  price.

Pastel or sketch oil portraits will normally cost £300-500 for a head and shoulders sized 16x12ins (40x30cm), but please speak to me first so I can give you an estimate of actual cost.

To confirm your order you require to send me a non-refundable deposit of 50 % of the full price. Please use this page for payments. 

Please note that I charge an additional delivery cost of £40 for all my commissioned work. When you pay the remaining balance for your commissioned work you will be prompted to pay a delivery fee on top of the balance itself.


A portrait can be a public statement of a long-term vision, a commitment to heritage and an inspiration for the next generation. All this in addition to a being a work of art which captures the essence of a person.

A great portrait shows not only a likeness, but also tells a story about the person. The pose and background can show their likes, loves, passions, hobbies, work, home, and personality, etc. Each painting is special and unique, as is the person painted.

Oil portrait paintings start at £700 for one person (head and shoulders) with a background. If this sounds expensive, please bear in mind that my paintings are very detailed and take at least 4 weeks to paint. If you prefer a budget version I offer sketch style oil portraits or pastel portraits with the price range of £300-500. Please use ‘Portraits and Figures’ section for your reference.

This is a common question and like the price question it depends on the medium. Pastel portraits take days to weeks depending on the size. Oil paintings take weeks to months to allow for drying time between layers.
When you book your commission you will be allocated a time slot, if you require a portrait as a gift please make sure to let me know the date it is required for. I will make sure the portrait is completed and with you in plenty time for the big occasion.

Once I have quoted you a price for your portrait and have all the relevant details from you I will ask you for a 50% non-refundable deposit to secure the booking. The initial 50% deposit secures the time slot agreed between us and finalises the booking. For portrait commissions the remaining 50% balance is due upon completion. Upon approval a second invoice will be sent requesting payment via Paypal or debit/credit card. Once the payment received the portrait will be shipped within 48 hours. Please note that the finished artwork requires payment at time of completion so please consider the completion date and arrange payment to be paid at this time. 

Yes, I ship work all over the world. When you contact me for a price please let me know your destination and I will tell you the price including shipping cost to your destination. Please note that I offer free wordwide shipping on all of prints, greeting cards and cushions.

Yes, depending on the size of the painting, it’s possible to include up to 5 people to it.

Yes and no. I can certainly guarantee a likeness of a subject , but if you like your portrait to be ‘exactly like on photo’ you will probably be better off by commissioning an art photographer instead.

Yes, but only up to a point. It’s the amount of detail that determines how much work is involved. Also, you need to be aware that if you choose a very small size, it may not be possible to include the level of detail you want. To get a perfect likeness, it’s only possible if the head of the sitter is no less than 5 inches in height. This may determine whether you have a full figure or just head & shoulders.

Once we are at this stage I need photographs to work from. The quality of the photographs will determine the quality of your finished portrait so HIGH QUALITY photographs are a must. Mobile phone photographs are not good enough quality in most cases so photographs taken by a digital camera, or SLR camera or studio photographs are the best. Equal lighting on the subject, preferably taken outside without a flash on are best. If you do not have a digital camera please ask friends or family if they can take photos for you. Files sizes around 3MB/3000KB in size are perfect. Please check the file size before sending them to me, 250KB is very low resolution and tiny so would be far too pixelated to draw from.

Photographs can be sent to I need the photographs emailed to me and not sent via Facebook as Facebook resizes them and therefore looses most of the original quality.
I would ask for 3 to 5 high quality photographs shot in different angles to give me a visual idea of the subject.

Yes, just let me know in advance and I can email progress photographs of portraits as I work through them. Some people choose not to see any progress at all and like the portrait to be a complete surprise, please let me know if this is required also.

A cancellation can only be made if you have not yet paid .
If you for any reason do not wish to pay the balance for the finished portrait, you will forfeit the initial deposit and I will retain ownership of the drawing/painting and its copyright , along with the right to display or sell the original and/or images of it to third parties to cover the initial expenses.

Any artwork produced by Leah Maximova remains copyrighted to Leah Maximova, therefore it cannot be reproduced in any way by the customer. I am happy for you to share progress photos with friends and family and even once the portrait is finished sharing the photographs.
Once the portrait has been received by the customer it cannot be reproduced in any way. I can sell the copyright to my art so that it can be used as logos for business etc., but you need to seek permission and pay for a licence to do so. This protects my art and you from copyright infringement. Please respect copyright law.