Family is not an important thing. It's everything.
~Michael J. Fox
Recently I had the opportunity to do a commission for a friend, a family portrait. It's a large sucker, 36″x48″, the largest I've painted to date.
The background is filled with memories of their lives together. Tripes taken, handwritten letters from loved ones, mementos of specials dates, etc..
Beyond the challenge of trying to represent each family member in a way that represented them (the mother's signature red lips and super blonde hair, their rosy cheeked girl, or the requested fauxhawks on the boys), was getting their little Roxy girl right. It's hard to paint a chocolate lab, and it was sensitive since the sweet girl died this past Christmas Day.
There were many stages along the way where I had to remind myself, “every painting has an ugly stage” and I even wondered at one point if it would pull together. Somehow it did.
That's that. First ever commission completed, and not only am I pleased, but so is my friend.