December 2017 Commission
I’m finishing up 2017 with another large commissioned painting. The couple that requested it want a still life that includes objects that are important to their family, and have asked that it have a classical Dutch feeling to it. It’s an exciting project for a beautiful home, and I’m thrilled to be working on it.
The posts below document the process from the beginning. I hope you enjoy reading through them and watching the work unfold!
Beginning a new commissioned painting
This week I began a new commissioned painting to finish up the year. The family who’s requested it had several specific themes and items they wanted in it. After a few discussions and some sketches passed back and forth, we agreed on a basic composition, as seen in this small thumbnail sketch: I’ll be doing […]
One Ends, One Begins
This picture is the end point of one commission, and the beginning point of another. The frame in back is for my most recently-completed piece. I’m delivering it tonight, and am very excited to see it up on the collectors’ wall. Hopefully they will allow me to share some pictures of it in it’s final […]
Final composition, toning the canvas, and a drapery challenge
Yesterday as I was preparing the final composition, I realized that the painting would be better served with a lower point of view. The sketches I’d originally sent to the collectors were from about a 45 degree angle, and the more I worked with it, the more I realized that a lower vantage point would […]
Drawing in the composition
I’ve transferred the composition to the panel, drawing it in with a thin wash of Burnt Umber. This video shows the details of where the project stands at the moment:
The Two Hardest Parts
It’s starting to feel like a painting. As I prepared myself for this project, the two parts that concerned me most from a technical standpoint were the background and the folded cloth. I began with them, since there will be multiple steps with drying time in between. I want to give the background a deep […]
Continuing work on the first pass. I don’t approach all of my paintings in exactly the same way. Some are done start-to-finish in just one sitting, and some have a black-and-white underpainting followed by successive color layers. This painting will be a series of “passes” – rough approximations to get some basic information down, followed […]
First Pass Completed
Last night I completed the first pass. The objective of that is to get paint everywhere so I can start to work out the exact relationships between colors – especially values and temperatures. Once paint is everywhere, I find that problems sometimes become obvious that weren’t so clear before. There are a couple of issues […]
Glazing the Background
Today I applied the glaze to darken the background, and in this video I talk about that process and show the results.
Up until last night I had my doubts about this project – I wasn’t entirely sure I would produce something I was proud of. It’s not that I have any lack of self-confidence in front of the easel, but the size and the tight schedule meant that I wasn’t 100% sure of the result. Now […]
Mt. Parnassus and the Greek Key
One of the things I’ve enjoyed most about the last few commissions I’ve done has been collaborating with the collectors to make highly personal paintings. We’ve done this by carefully selecting objects that tell their stories. This painting has a few such elements, and to me the most interesting is that small circular box. The […]
Happy New Year! I finished this painting last night – mostly finished, that is. There are a few small issues I want to correct, so I’ll let this dry for about a week and then spend an afternoon addressing them. But, I wanted to get this to the point of being essentially done by the […]
Framed and Ready for Delivery
This commissioned painting is framed and ready for delivery. I gave the collectors several options for the frame, and was excited that they chose this one. It was my choice as well. It’s a gold leaf frame, about 2.5 inches wide, with some simple Arts and Crafts – inspired detailing at the corners. I think […]
Considering a Commission?
Have you thought about commissioning a painting like this for yourself or a loved one? If so, I would love to hear from you. Just fill out the form below so we can begin a conversation about it.