Comissioning or buying a painting
A new commission or purchase of an existing artwork usually begins with an email or phone call to discuss a particular project either with a private or commercial client. I will take down their contact details and an idea of what they are after before arranging to send them a quote for producing or selling them an existing painting. If they are happy with the quote I usually arrange a meeting to discuss this further.
Nearly all my own paintings start with my own visual Idea in my head or some form of inspiration. With a commission either private or commercial there may be a particular image or idea that the clients already has in mind for the artwork. At the meeting I take notes and use this information to help come up with my initial sketches for their ideas. I always welcome and are happy to use any photographic reference material the client already has, I may also take my own reference shots either at the meeting or I can return to do this or add further shots if needed at a later date .
After the initial meeting I will come up with ideas often quick sketches which I then fine tune into a more finished line drawing or compositional idea to show the client. These are often small line drawings sometimes with some basic colour ideas quickly daubed in creating a rough miniature version of what the finished painting may eventually look like. This all helps to make sure the ideas I'm creating are heading in the right direction and are what the client has asked for.
The second meeting is often by email with images attached. Its a chance to look at and discuss the ideas i've come up with, see if the they are working and for me to take on board any amendments or further suggestions the client has. I can then make any amends necessary until I get the go ahead to proceed with the finished painting. On occasion I complete a second set of visuals if I 've made substantial changes to reassure both the client and myself that I am still headed in the right direction, before I get started on the actual artwork.
Creating the painting.
I then need plenty of time left alone over several weeks turning the initial sketches, drawings, ideas and colour visuals into a finished full size artwork. This is one of the most rewarding and satisfying parts of the job taking hours of painstaking work using the airbrush and very fine paintbrushes. Using mainly designers gouache on an illustration board I slowly create what becomes the finished artwork. I normally protect the finished artwork surface with a layer of transparent acetate, finally covering the whole painting with a piece of thick black cartridge paper. This ads a couple of layers of protection from any possible damage from scratches or scuffs to the surface and from water and daylight. The paint's I use are light fast but any protection from the fading properties of sunlight, are worth using .
Presenting the painting.
Once I am completely happy with the painting , I will photograph it for my own records, contact the client to let them know the finished artwork is ready and arrange a meeting to hand this over. It is a really good feeling seeing the client's reaction as I lift the cover and they see their artwork for the very first time... and are hopefully delighted with what they see.