Canvas Sizes: The Ultimate Portrait Size Chart You Need

Portrait Size Chart For Small, Medium, and Large Portraits PortraitFlip

Need help finding the perfect portrait size for your space?

Imagine selecting a medium-sized canvas for an extremely large empty wall.

*The horror*

I totally understand how Goldilocks now felt. 

The strive to achieve the ‘just right’ feeling is exactly what you need at times like these. 

The just-right canvas size for the empty space over your bed.

Or the just right portrait size for that empty wall in the living room.

Let me tell you even the most beautiful artwork will make any space look awkward if the size is not right.

Take time to figure out what standard canvas sizes are available and what portrait sizes suit your home.

Goldilocks did not have a guide, but I got you.

I will serve you all the portrait dimensions and the places they would look best — on a silver platter — all you have to do is just read on.

What Are The Standard Canvas Sizes?

An interior wall of a living room showcasing all the standard sizes of canvases.

An excellent question to begin with. 

It is said that in the old days, artists would make their own stretchers or order custom stretcher strips from the carpenters—which would be very expensive. 

This practice is also followed by many artists and art admirers today. 

A top-notch solution? Take advantage of the commercially produced stretcher frames. 

Portrait sizes have been standardized for a reason.

To make it easier for you to choose which canvas painting size will suit your wall space the best. 

Someone who lives in a smaller home will need a small canvas size.

The same rules apply to someone with a bigger home.

Did you know that even a few inches can make a difference? *pun intended*

Which drives me to answer the second most asked question—

Which Standard Portrait Size Is Right For My Home?

An interior wall mockup displaying all the different size of canvases in a standard portrait size chart to give an idea that which portrait size will be right for someone's home

And I am pleased to tell you there is no true answer to this question

 — but I will give you a rundown of the most common and standard sizes.

To figure out the perfect portrait width and height can be overwhelming.

Remember this when it comes to what hangs on your wall — size matters. 

Here is a brief breakdown of the most common portrait size in inches:

  • Mini and Small Portraits are ideal for tabletops or desktops.
  • Medium Portraits are flawless for the walls.
  • Large Portraits are exquisite for above a staircase, couch, or on a larger wall.

Pro tip: Adding a matboard mounting to your painting will add to its visual weight and overall size.

All this boils down to me putting together this definitive portrait size chart. 

Which is going to give you the best chance of finding the correct portrait measurements for your humble abode.

These canvas sizing charts will help you choose the perfect portrait photo dimensions for your space.

Let’s dive right into this quick portrait size chart.

Let’s dive right into this quick portrait size chart.

Mini Portrait Painting Canvas Sizes

A mini portrait displayed on the shelf to better understand the size of placement and size of mini portraits in the portrait size chart family.

Any canvases under 4” x 6” are considered mini canvas sizes. 

These canvases are ideal for creating small paintings.

Mini canvases can be used in a variety of creative ways, such as collages or tabletop easel presentations.

They can be adored alone by themselves or be displayed on the wall as a cluster of miniature canvases.

This can be a bit difficult to achieve with larger prints.

The mini canvas family includes square variations like 2″ x 2″ or 3″ x 3″.

It even includes the “ACEO” size (Art Cards Editions and Originals) which is a tad bigger than a business card.

Mini Canvas Sizes:

  1. 2” x 2”
  2. 3” x 3”
  3. 4” x 4”

Benefits of Mini Portrait Size:

  1. Something as tiny as 4”x6” can make everything like transport, packing, and mailing them easier.
  2. Don’t have palatial space? Yeah, me neither. Mini sized canvases beautify and cutify your space without making it look cluttered.
  3. Stay on-trend. Why not join the resurging interest in all things miniature, which is at an all-time high? It’s also a fascinating conversation started.
  4. Everything aside, how cute are those mini sized easel painting portraits? If that doesn’t sell you mini canvases I don’t know what would.

Suitable for:

  1. Mini portraits of you, your friends, or your pets.
  2. Because mini canvas photo art is compact and lightweight, it can easily be hung on the wall with clips for a youthful and trendy decor look.
  3. Inspirational, witty, sarcastic, and unforgettable phrases — choose your table-top mini sized portrait to brighten up a dull day.
  4. Mini portraits have the perfect size to include several characters from your favorite hobby, interest, or pastime *poof* visual library.
  5. Whether you’re working with a giant bookshelf or a little free-hanging shelf, mini canvas photo art can go practically anywhere.
  6. A baby’s nursery wall adorned with mini portraits of your favorite animals will add to the aesthetics too.’

You have a lot of room to play and experiment with mini portrait painting canvas sizes.

Small Portrait Painting Canvas Sizes

A small portrait displayed on the shelf to better understand the size of placement and size of small portraits in the portrait size chart family.

Any canvas size between 4” x 8” up to 8” x 10” is considered the measurement of small portraits.

In the family of portrait size charts, the small portraits can be called the most versatile.

These work best in the bathroom, stairwell, on a desk, or on a dressing table.

In other words, it is not ideal to be hung in a large room all by itself.

The small portrait’s dimension is the most impactful when grouped or paired with another similar size canvas for a symmetrical look.

Small Canvas Sizes:

  1. 4” x 6”
  2. 4” x 8”
  3. 5” x 7”
  4. 8” x 10”
  5. 9” x 12”

Benefits of Small Portrait Size:

  1. A small portrait size canvas print is fairly compact and portable.
  2. Smaller canvases are ideal for delicate detail work or for generating paintings with a single, focal image.
  3. This archetypal art size makes it a great fill-in for gallery walls.
  4. A small sized canvas can also be used as a decorative piece to go with your desk or bookcase.

Suitable for:

  1. A friend’s portrait, your pet’s portrait, or even a self-portrait.
  2. As an ideal gift or souvenir for anyone you know.
  3. A small canvas has the perfect size to sit on a bookshelf, coffee table, study table, or nightstand.
  4. Small canvases are exemplary options to compliment your large canvas art.
  5. Small portraits are perfect accessories for home decor because they will add texture and depth to any wall in your home.
  6. Holiday-themed canvases in the form of holiday decorations will instantly elevate your holiday decor. 

According to standard portrait sizes, small canvases are deemed the most versatile of them all.

Medium Portrait Painting Canvas Sizes

A medium portrait displayed on the shelf to better understand the size of placement and size of medium portraits in the portrait size chart family.

Did you know that the best canvas size for portraits is 12” x 16”?

Medium portraits sizes included canvases ranging from 11” x 14” to 16” x 20”.

This is an unrivaled portrait size family that is just perfect for customizing a home office or foyer without adding to the clutter.

The medium size portrait family of the canvas size chart contains varying canvas sizes

— meant for different types of paintings.

Eg: The 12” x 16” is exceptional for a two-figure portrait up to the shoulders.

Whereas a 16” x 20” is matchless for an entire two-figure photo to an oil painting.

Any medium portrait size would look great in a hallway gallery, on a mantlepiece, or as a smaller stand-alone piece on a wall.

Medium Canvas Sizes:

  1. 11” x 14”
  2. 12” x 12”
  3. 12” x 16”
  4. 16” x 20”

Benefits of Medium Portrait Size:

  1. A medium portrait size can accommodate up to two to three subjects with the best detailing in facial expressions.
  2. Although this standard portrait size calls for two characters with some room for background aesthetics.
  3. A medium-sized canvas allows you to showcase one photo or numerous images, you can get as creative as you want.
  4. This is one of the best portrait sizes for oil painting portraits.

Suitable for:

  1. As a very thoughtful gift for anyone and on any occasion.
  2. An ideal gift idea option for any couple you know.
  3. It is the perfect portrait size to build a gallery wall.
  4. If you want to play by the rules, this canvas size is an impactful stand-alone option for a small wall. 
  5. Pair a focal medium sized portrait with complimentary mini portraits to make an exquisite impression.

The medium portrait’s dimensions are not ideal for transport but you can always deliver the canvas to someone’s doorstep as a gift. 

Large Portrait Painting Canvas Sizes

A large portrait displayed on the floor to better understand the size of placement and size of large portraits in the portrait size chart family.

Large canvas portrait sizes have my heart.

The sizes of large wall art range from 18” x 24” to 48” x 72”.

Even though the large portrait size family can be intimidating — it is unmatched when pulled off correctly.

A bare wall with just one piece of large art creates a polished, classic look.

These portrait sizes are ideal for standard paintings like landscapes and portraits.

Although you can always personalize paintings to suit your personality and home.

Large canvas sizes do have many perks when it comes to home decor and gifting — until you have to transport it. 

If you want to minus the ‘hassle’ from “get a hassle-free personalized painting delivered home”?

PortraitFlip get’s the job done for you.

Also, please minus the ‘free’.

Large Canvas Sizes:

  1. 18” x 24”
  2. 20” x 30”
  3. 24” x 36” 
  4. 30” x 40”
  5. 36” x 48”
  6. 48” x 72”

Benefits of Large Portrait Size:

  1. Unlike smaller canvases sizes, large sized canvases give you plenty of room to explore creativity and experimentation.
  2. Has a much wider surface to fit four to five characters comfortably.
  3. Due to its substantial size, you have the freedom of the position of characters and composition of the piece.
  4. When hung frameless, even a large portrait painting size is lightweight compared to other wall hangings.

Suitable for:

  1. Perfect to hang on a large wall above the couch, bed, over the fireplace, or as the focal point of your dining area.
  2. The large sized portrait is ideal for abstract art but only for your office as it gives a sophisticated and professional look.
  3. Absurdly large pet portraits that look aesthetically pleasing sitting over your bed.
  4. Large canvas sizes are perfect for cityscapes and landscapes to capture the bustling details.
  5. Larger sized canvases are ideal for large walls which can also be complemented with smaller canvases.

Large sized canvases have been known as ‘Cadillacs’ of the portrait size chart — for a reason.

Custom-made Portrait Painting Canvas Sizes

A custom portrait displayed on the floor to better understand the size of placement and size of custom portraits in the portrait size chart family.

Custom portrait canvas sizes contain all the sizes other than those in the standard portrait size chart.

Mainly since everything under 48” x 72” accommodates all types of paintings with under ten characters.

Custom-made portrait sizes are exactly that — customized to any size you want.

One of the greatest things about this canvas size family in the portrait size chart is that they are customizable to fit your preference and style.

Custom Canvas Sizes:

Customized to your preference.

Benefits of Custom Portrait Size:

  1. Custom portrait sizes are ideal for sizes other than those on the portrait size chart.
  2. It can be tailored to your home decor needs and preferences. 
  3. Custom canvas sizes can be used for more than ten characters that are from a photo or merged together from photos. 
  4. Can be the anchor of your home decor for any room it calls home.

Suitable for:

  1. A large family portrait — and pets.
  2. Art is a statement — and what better way to make a statement than to have a larger than life-size portrait.
  3. As a stand-alone piece to decorate a large empty bare wall with no other decor.

Customized portrait size is usually suggested when there are more characters that have to be fit into the canvas. 

Choosing the Right Space to Display Your Art

When you display your canvas, the placement, and space in which it is exhibited are equally as crucial as the paintings that are chosen.

The large size canvases have the power to delight and mesmerize when hung properly.

These are some of the creative placements that can be considered while hanging a canvas.

Ones that will accentuate your painting while also blending in with the overall design of your space.

  1. Bedroom Headboard

When you place a single extra-large canvas print above the bed, it can also serve as a magnificent headboard.

Alternatively, arranging three to four large canvases horizontally spans the length of the wall behind the bed.

This results in a spectacular spectacle.

  1. Accent Piece On A Bare Wall

Consider an empty wall as a blank page, waiting to be filled with an extra-large canvas print in all its grandeur!

Make the most of the area and display a fantastically worthy piece.

  1. Above The Fireplace

A family photo displayed above the mantel is the perfect way to set the tone of ou home.

  1. Surrounded By Creative Lighting Elements

Remember that extra-large canvases sometimes do need something extra too, to stand out. 

Use other decor items to boost the look of your canvas.

PRO TIP: For a stylish and entertaining presentation detail, consider stringing lights near the painting.

Designing an extra-large canvas print is the way to go if you have the benefit of extra space in your home!

Wall art Placement Tips

The artwork should hang around 57 inches from the floor in the middle or at eye level. 

If you want to hang it above the sofa make sure the space between the artwork and the sofa is at least 6-12 inches.

If your ceilings are low which ideally means less than 8 feet.

Try this, divide your wall into four horizontal portions and hang the artwork in the second portion.

Make sure the middles of many pieces of varying heights line up if you’re hanging them together.

Remember your stairs represent movement and hanging only one piece of artwork will not help with the aesthetics.

To create a diagonal impression when hanging artwork over your stairs hang a piece of artwork every third step.

Imagination helps best when selecting a portrait size for your room.

If your room is already cluttered, go for a larger piece of artwork to avoid overwhelming it.

Wall Art Ideas 

A gallery wall decorated with paintings from portraitflip to give an idea how different sized portraits would look mounted on a wall as a gallery wall display.

Gallery walls are a fun and affordable way to display your favorite works of different sizes in your house. 

To avoid a congested or cramped finished result, make sure there is enough blank space around the artwork. 

Because we read sinistrodextral, the left side of your gallery wall can usually carry additional visual weight.

Mainly like, bigger portrait sizes, larger items, wider frames, or dark colors.

Tip: to avoid ruining your walls trace the pieces for your gallery wall on kraft paper, cut them, arrange them, and then mount your frames with nails.

Display Shelves

Floating display shelves are an excellent method to showcase your favorite artwork or decor collection. 

Staging the shelves on different levels might help to create an eclectic, relaxed atmosphere. 

Do you want to go for a more polished look? 

A straight-lined shelf gives out a sleek and elegant aesthetic. 

The picture and decor can be swapped out and rearranged whenever you choose or according to the season if the artwork is supported up on a shelf rather than attached to the wall.

Tip: Between paintings and framed images, use ornamental things like books or plants to create a manicured impression.

In conclusion, I would like to say portrait paintings are not a necessity, they are a language of love.

So, I would never say “you need to get a portrait”, instead I would say “You should get a portrait”.

As a token of appreciation, as a sign of love, as a gesture of what care looks like.

The world today needs more people like you, to manifest this strong urge to hold onto a dear memory forever.

How is this age-old practice of divulging love slowly dying anyway?

Not now.

Not anymore.

PortraitFlip gives you a chance to relive that livid evocation through such a beautiful medium.

Not only that, you can even create your own sweet memories by merging photos together into a beautiful painting.

It is not just an option for a gift, it is a symbol of your emotions, your love, and your efforts. 

Through PortraitFlip, you not only suffice your needs but also help a starving artist in need.

I strongly believe that royalty art is not the only art or a dead artist that you should support — it is the living ones that need you to acknowledge them.

Art is beautiful, and every home deserves to be graced by it.

What is stopping you from bringing art into your life?

That’s all she said…

Salut lovelies,

This brings me to the end and I hope I did clear your doubts about the portrait’s size chart.

If there is anything more you want to know or have a tingle to let me know the comment section is always open for you. 

Do share this article if it spoke to you!

We do have some amazing content on our YouTube and Instagram in case you want to know more about portrait sizes or portrait paintings.

Au Revoir!

There is an array of forms of paintings to choose from.

Suggested: Occasions To Gift A Handmade Portrait

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the average portrait size?
The average portrait size is the medium size. Although most popular portrait size depends on the number of characters, background, and photo size.
What is the best size canvas for portrait painting?
The best size canvas for portrait painting is either medium or large, custom also works well
What is the best size for family picture?
If you have a small family of 3-4 people, it’s advisable to go for a large portrait painting. But if your family consists of more than 5 people (including pets) its advisable to go a custom portrait painting.
How big is a 16 by 20 canvas?
A 16 by 20 inches canvas size is medium size. It is big enough to fit 3 people comfortably.
How to choose the right canvas sizes for a wall?
Firstly, to select the right canvas size on a wall, you will need to Start by measuring the width and height of your wall, The aim here is to fill two-thirds to three-fourths of your available wall space. If you are looking to create a focal point with a portrait painting, you need to hand them above an element like, the couch, bed, mantel etc.

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