But he only found out the painting had been hung in the White House - close to the Oval Office - when it popped up as a backdrop during a TV interview broadcast on Sunday evening.
It has also been compared with the famous "Dogs Playing Poker" painting.
President Donald Trump has a painting in the White House depicting a fantasy scene of himself hanging out with former Republican presidents. On Friday, a report in The Washington Post said the White House was considering plans to separate parents and children at the border, in a bid to decrease the numbers of families attempting to cross illegally into the US. Directly across the table is Abraham Lincoln. A cheery Gerald Ford stands behind Trump and a small variety of other former presidents, such as Grant and Coolidge, peep out from the backdrop.
"All I know is he said he liked what I'd done and that made me feel great", Thomas told CNN. Lincoln is opposite him and Reagan, George HW and George W Bush, an avuncular Theodore Roosevelt, and a tickled Dwight Eisenhower to Trump's right.
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Thomas said on Tuesday that the portrait was the newest iteration in his series of presidential pictures.
"He's outside the norm of Republicans and that makes it kind of interesting", he told Time magazine recently. Both versions also have a "subtle feminist message", according to a Time article on Thomas's website.
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For President Donald Trump, he seems to have visualised doing just that, in the form of a painting hanging at the White House that caused a huge uproar on social media when it was revealed over the weekend.
He also found it hard to give the president a "genuine smile" - and had to start from scratch after his first try seemed off.