Caron Lydia Shahrestani Profile Photo

Caron Lydia Shahrestani

San Mateo, California

As a self-taught artist, I thoroughly enjoy the process of finding the soul of my subjects between the layers of paint. In using reference photos and brushing acrylic paint on wrapped canvas, my process takes several hours and sometimes multiple sessions to complete a commission. Like all portrait artists, I find the true magic of the subject to be in the eyes, the windows to the soul. Hence my best art work comes from sharp, well lit photography. One of the things I love most about painting portraits is evoking an emotional response in my clients. Whether it's a memorial portrait for a pet that passed away or a surprise portrait for someone who loves their pet more than humans, it warms my heart to see their reactions and hear how they cried when they saw the finished canvas. In a world filled with darkness and doubt, I find solace in knowing my pieces bring light, color and joy to the homes of others.

Caron Shahrestani is a Bay Area native and a consummate creative. As a trained newspaper reporter, professional videographer and photographer, she has a sharp eye for visual story-telling and an ear for interview quotes and music.

Having taken art, drawing and sculpting classes in her formative years, she painted her first outdoor mural in 2008 during her time as a Peace Corps volunteer in West Africa. After starting her own production company, Caron Modern Media, in 2013, she fell in love with ballet-based group fitness (aka "barre") and started painting figurative pieces based on the exercises, which she then sold to her fellow fitness enthusiasts.

Through her connections on social media, Caron grew her following over time and transitioned from figurative fitness art to landscapes to celebrity portraits and eventually pet portraits. Today she has a steady flow of commissions for all breeds and species of pets, including memorial portraits and surprise gifts.

Fun Fact: Caron is also the social media manager for Marin Open Studios and is grateful to share her digital secrets for success with this growing community of artists. Sign up for the MOS email list for updates on her upcoming Zoom workshops and live training events!