My latest — a wedding portrait painting, commissioned by the groom as a birthday gift for his wife of seven years.
Wasn’t he thoughtful to get his wife a portrait of their wedding?! It was such a lovely picture; the couple and the lake were very photogenic. And I’ve always enjoyed wedding portraits — paintings or photos. Sometimes I wonder how well I can paint someone without knowing them; but maybe it’s easier that way. I just to try and get as close as possible to the image in the photograph.
The entire transaction (initial inquiry, discussion of the painting, photo submission, commission, work-in-progress photos and payment) was done on the Internet. But since the client lives just 5 miles from my Austin art studio, Bruce and I delivered the finished wedding portrait in person. When Dale came to the door, I felt like he was already a good friend since I had spent so much time “face-to-face” with the picture of him and his lovely wife Gretchen!
When I’m painting, I do carry on quite a spirited monologue: “Oooh you’re not gonna like THAT, let’s change it”, or “Well now, lets get those highlights in your hair!” For this artist, painting portraits is a matter of pushing and pulling until “Viola! Suddenly the face has a personality shining back at me!“ Then they are REALLY in the room and it has become so much more than canvas and oil paint!