Elizabeth Whelan  »  Edgartown, MA
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Nat Benjamin
Well-known wooden boat designer & builder
Gannon & Benjamin Marine Railway
Vineyard Haven Harbor
Martha's Vineyard, Massachusetts

Elizabeth Whelan
Edgartown, MA
Fee range: $3,600-$25,000

Visit artist's full web site

About the Artist

Elizabeth R. Whelan is a UK-born artist and portrait painter. She was raised in Canada and completed her education in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Since then, the Chesapeake Bay and New England coastlines have been her home. She currently works from a studio on Chappaquiddick Island in Edgartown on Martha's Vineyard, and her catboat ‘Miaou’ is her transportation of choice.

Whelan is fascinated by the stories of people of all types. She has become known for her ability to bring out the warmth and character of her sitter. Elizabeth does all she can to put her portrait subject at ease and make the experience relaxing and enjoyable.

In 2010 Whelan decided to pivot from a two-decade career in the commercial arts and took a workshop with famed painter Daniel Greene to learn the basics. For the next seven years she painted on her own while she and her partner Bill Benns, a wooden boat builder, worked as caretakers on remote Nashawena Island (in the Elizabeth Islands chain off the coast of Massachusetts).

They were the only two year-round residents. Taking care of the island, a farm, a herd of Highland cattle, and living off the grid deeply influenced her early work and her personal priorities. And a second painting workshop in 2014 with acclaimed artist Burton Silverman helped her set a course for a fulfilling career in fine art.

Whelan is fascinated by the stories of people of all types. A life-long interest in the sciences has led to her painting women in science, as well as other science-related artwork in both abstract and contemporary realist styles. And her love of being on the water comes through in her marine and maritime artwork, with an emphasis on sailing.

Now that she lives in the relative civilization of Edgartown, Elizabeth supports the local art and artisan communities with an interest in preserving heritage and mastery. She believes in using strategic partnerships to promote local businesses and artists. Her philosophy is that ‘we can all succeed’.

Elizabeth Whelan is the creator and sponsor of the Martha’s Vineyard Drawing Prize, a competition started in 2019 to encourage excellence in the art of drawing.

You can also find her fun and informative instructional art videos on her YouTube channel.

Member: Salmagundi Club, Portrait Society of America, American Society of Marine Artists

Portrait Fees

Portrait fees vary depending on the size of the canvas, complexity of the background and number of people in the painting.
These are the most frequently requested sizes and types of portraits, and are a guideline for fees.

Please inquire for a firm quote and for detailed backgrounds, full-length portraits, larger groups of people, animals or complex settings.





Head & shoulders portrait

16" x 12" - 24" x 18"

$3,000 - $4,000


Half figure with hands

24" x 20" - 30" x 24"

$6,000 - $8,000

+ 50%

3/4 length portrait

36" x 24" - 30" x 40"

10,000 - $12,000

+ 50%

Full figure

48" x 36" - 40" x 60"

$18,000 - $25,000

+ 50%

Please note

A deposit of 50% of the fee is requested with the signing of a contract prior to the initial sitting (which includes a sketching/photography shoot). Your painting commission is not scheduled until both the deposit and contract have been received. The remainder of the fee is due when the painting is delivered in person or prior to shipment.

Fees do not include travel, framing or shipping. Elizabeth Whelan has a relationship with an excellent custom framer and can arrange for a beautiful frame to set off your portrait, or advise should you wish to use your own framer.

Additional portraits

Portrait of a Mariner
Vineyard Haven, MA
Casual portrait of man grilling on Martha's Vineyard.
posthumous portrait of former
Director of Featherstone Center for the Arts
Oak Bluffs, MA
Executive Director of Featherstone Center for the Arts
Oak Bluffs, MA
Portrait of conservation expert, Massachusetts
Portrait of a woman painted for her 100th birthday
Cape Cod, Massachusetts
Former President
Radford University
casual portrait of a woman on Chappaquiddick Island
casual portrait of a woman in Vineyard Haven, MA
Casual woman's portrait on Martha's Vineyard
Young businessman against Boston skyline
Nancy Nekvasil, President Emerita
Saint Mary's College
Notre Dame, Indiana
Michael Kowalski, Retired CEO
Tiffany & Company
New York, New York
Hoisting the Sunfish sail
Edgartown Great Pond
Martha's Vineyard, Massachusetts
Geraldine Brooks with her horse Valentine
Pulitzer Prize-winning author
West Tisbury, Martha's Vineyard
Posthumous portrait of a young man at his easel
South Carolina
Deborah T. Kochevar, DVM, PhD, DACVCP, MGBA
Professor and Dean Emerita
Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine
Tufts University, Medford, Massachusetts
Dr. John A Fracchia, MD
Director of Urology, retired
Lenox Hill Hospital
New York, New York
Megan Carroll
Applied Ocean Physics Engineer
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution
Surveyor at work on the waterfront
Edgartown, Massachusetts
Luanne Johnson, PhD
Wildlife Biologist
Birdwatching on Fullers Beach
Edgartown, Massachusetts
Shellfish Hatchery Manager
Amandine Surier-Hall
Martha's Vineyard Shellfish Group
Oak Bluffs, Martha's Vineyard
Young girl at play indoors
Edgartown, Massachusetts
Preteen girl at play indoors
Edgartown, Massachusetts
Father and son paddle their canoe
Edgartown Great Pond
Martha's Vineyard, Massachusetts
Stephanie Mashek
Mashek MacLean Architects
Vineyard Haven, Massachusetts
Greer Boyle Thornton
Co-owner, Atria Restaurant
Edgartown, Massachusetts
Couple on a sunny day outdoors
West Tisbury, Massachusetts
Kevin W. Gaughen, Attorney
(1954 - 2019)
Hingham, Masssachusetts
Karen W. Finley, Math Teacher
Oak Bluffs, Massachusetts
Cynthia Riggs
Mystery Author
Martha's Vineyard, Massachusetts
Nat Benjamin
Well-known wooden boat designer & builder
Gannon & Benjamin Marine Railway
Vineyard Haven Harbor
Martha's Vineyard, Massachusetts
Ross Gannon
Boatbuilder and Designer
Sailing Vineyard Sound 
Martha's Vineyard, Massachusetts
Attorney Howard Miller at the helm
Vineyard Haven Harbor
Martha's Vineyard, Massachusetts
Eli Dagostino, Photographer
Chilmark, Massachusetts
Young Man in a Rural Landscape
Traditional Irish Step Dancer
with musical instruments
Stina Sayre, Fashion Designer
Martha's Vineyard, Massachusetts
The Family at their Summer Home
Vineyard Haven, Martha's Vineyard
Designer Tara Kenny with her beagle
Lamberts Cove Beach, West Tisbury
Martha's Vineyard, Massachusetts
Boat Builder and Shipwright
William E. Benns, IV
Camden, Maine
Artisan and jewelry maker at work in her studio
Vineyard Haven, Massachusetts
Howard Attebery, DDS
West Tisbury, Massachusetts
Mikel Hunter
Boutique & gallery owner
Edgartown, Massachusetts
and Hudson, New York
James Weisman with sailboat
Architect and Sailor
Vineyard Haven, Massachusetts
Dale McClure, President (retired)
Martha’s Vineyard Agricultural Society
West Tisbury, Massachusetts
Jenn Pillsworth
Director, The Field Gallery
West Tisbury, Massachusetts
Whaling Captain Joseph T. Belain
Famous Whaler
Martha's Vineyard, Massachusetts
Linda M. Kaplan, MD, with Dachshund Bosco
Vineyard Haven Harbor
Martha's Vineyard, Massachusetts
Anita Botti at Home & Mako, Deputy Director
International Women's Initiatives
Department of State
West Tisbury, Massachusetts
Will Luckey, Musician
West Tisbury, Martha's Vineyard
Ron DiOrio, Owner
Craftworks Gallery
Oak Bluffs, Martha's Vineyard
Yellow Labrador Retriever and his dog toys
Golden Retriever resting with his ball
Lucy Vincent Beach
Martha's Vineyard, Massachusetts
Calico cat on woven rug
Tuxedo cat posing in front of brocade curtain

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