Let’s Get Going!
Once you contact me about a commission, we need to get all the details worked out. Sometimes it’s amazing how many things need to be nailed down, but it doesn’t take long.
Size is the starting point for everything. You may want to base your artwork sizing decision on a number of personal preferences including your own personal taste, decorating needs, how this artwork will be displayed and so forth. Size also is a factor in the final cost of your new piece. I specialize in finely detailed paintings 12” x 16” and under, but you can choose any size you want.
Do you prefer a watercolor or a pencil sketch? Maybe charcoal? What about a combination? Color? Black and white? Like your decision about portrait size, your personal preferences and similar factors will determine the final choice.
I work from photographs supplied by my clients (snail mail or e-mail is fine) or occasionally ones that I take myself. It is critically important to examine the photos carefully and select those that really contain the details you want to have included in the final piece. Try to ask yourself objectively if the photo is suitable for a portrait. (When you look at pictures you already have, you may realize how much detail your imagination and love are actually filling in!) I can help you select the best photos to use.
Quality, focus and detail are the three most important elements to keep in mind when choosing reference photos. If necessary, I can combine different subject and background details from different photographs if enough information is there, but I cannot “imagine” details for which I don’t have a reference.
If it’s necessary and possible, take new reference photos. Take a look at my Photo Tips section for advice on taking quality images of your pet for art reference.
Once we work out the details on size, style and reference materials, I require a 50% deposit in advance, and will then place your piece on my painting schedule. When the portrait is completed, I will send you a digital proof for you to review and approve. After your final approval and upon receipt of final payment, your portrait will be delivered to you.
Turnaround & Scheduling
Each portrait I create is given the time and attention it deserves, so, of course, the time it takes to complete any given piece can be very different. Turnaround depends on the size and complexity of the portrait as well as the time available on my painting schedule. As you might expect, holidays can get pretty packed, and Christmas commissions, for example, need to be reserved well in advance if possible.
If you have a special date like a birthday or anniversary, I always try my best to work it in. I know how significant these special times are. However, if time is too short, I am happy to deliver an on-line Gift Certificate to tide you over.
Copyright can be a confusing issue with “intellectual property” these days—look at all the music and movie download problems! I retain the copyright on each portrait I create, but that simply means I will make all artwork available for viewing on my website and have it as part of my professional portfolio. Because each portrait is personal in nature, I will not use an image for cards or prints without a client’s understanding and permission.