Just so you know...I asked for permission before I posted these personal school photos! :)
A few months ago I received an email from someone asking if I painted custom portraits from photos. I've done this a few times, I've painted various family members and portraits for several customers, and I did it more when I was working through a little shop where I sold my paintings. Once I painted a portrait for a wife to give to her husband as a surprise birthday present....no pressure there!
She sent me several photos of her husband as a little boy and I painted him seated in a chair holding his best friend, his boyhood dog. To my relief and pleasure, he liked it well enough to display it over their mantle. But I don't offer this on my website because I'm fairly certain there are artists out there that are more practiced and proficient at it than I am, and now that we home school I have to be organized with my time....which is a good thing! So, when a customer signs on to work with me through the portrait process their patience is essential. :-)
Here is how the process works:
The first step is the drawing or sketch that I send to the customer for their critique and input. After I receive photos of the "sitter" I sketch out the painting. When I am painting or drawing someone's loved one....it is so very helpful to get critiqued. I know that sounds scary, and it is, but it is very needed when you are hoping to translate an image of a person that the customer knows personally onto canvas. Not knowing nor having met a person and only seeing an image of them from a photo is a bit of disadvantage when you are trying to capture them on canvas so they are recognizable to themselves as well as to their family and friends. So feedback is a must.
"Dee" (her son is in the photos above) has been a dream customer...she knew what she wanted and has been so patient and helpful along the way...and so far hasn't given up on me! :)
She wanted her son (who is now a grown man) painted in a period style setting to complement her gorgeous Greek Revival home (she sent me pics of her home....imagine pages of an Early American Life issue!)
Some of the fun personal effects that will be in the painting are the title of first book he read translated into Latin, which is something a boy of that period would have studied....we are also incorporating a pet and some favorite flowers in a vase as well as a garden outside the window.
Next step- after "Dee" approved the sketch and chose the size of canvas she wanted, I enlarged the sketch to fit the canvas. "Dee" also chose the colors she wanted for all of the items...with a little room for "artistic license"! I then used the enlarged sketch and traced it onto the canvas. Sorry the photos are so dark, yep, it was a rainy day.
Now the painting begins, and more feedback before it is completed.
With "Dee's" permission, I'll keep you posted....thanks for letting me share.
Just a quick update on "Thing 3"......I think I can safely call it a rabbit or a bunny now. It has a body and a painted face. Now I need to dress her/him! (*blush*)