Before beginning an intuitive portrait, I always receive a mental image from my personal guides of the spirit guide, guardian angel, or spirit animal that I am supposed to draw for someone's intuitive portrait. This guide, angel, or animal is presented to me in a specific stance, wearing certain clothes, and sometimes accompanied with other symbols (which are always explained in the accompanied channeled message) in the intuitive portrait. I draw what the client's guardian wants or needs for them to see.
Here is a progression of a spirit animal guide! No matter how many portraits I draw, I'm always amazed as I watch guides and angels "come to life" on the page. :)