Wednesday, January 08, 2014

Family Portrait Commission

Not so long ago, my significant other, Joseph, was fishing about for a present for his older brother Michael.  He'd not-so-recently had a son with his wife, Vanessa, and while Joseph had presents for Carter (their son), he was a little at a loss for what to give Michael.  Somewhat jokingly (I never TOTALLY joke about these things) I suggested he consider commissioning someone to do a portrait of the family.  I figured he'd go with a cooler artist than myself, or perhaps the more traditional portraiture route of a realistic painting, but somehow the job ended up in my lap.  Since Michael doesn't read my blog, I think it's safe to go ahead and post it.

Joseph sent me a lot of reference to work with, but none of it was exactly what I'd envisioned.  I ended up having to cobble something together with some Google Image Searching (for 'man holding baby' at first, which brought up almost nothing, then 'woman holding baby' which brought up almost as little.  Where are all the proud mommy-bloggers?)

I've been messing around with different processes, and this was the first time I'd used a Copic marker (as seen in THIS (link) post) to do the initial pass.

Sadly, I didn't take any process photos of the watercolor itself, but it was pretty similar to any other watercolor I've done.

The painting is on Dick Blicks 140lb 11"x15" cold press watercolor paper.  Originally I'd purchased it as a test for Kara pages, and found it lacking, but having worked through all 15 sheets, it's starting to grow on me.  It's not really the right ratio for Kara pages (I used Canson's Montval 10"x15"), but it's really great for concept work and commissions.  The paper is thick and buttery, and while working wet into damp will lead to bleeding out, it can take some reworking (just don't scrub it with scrubber brushes, as that tears up the surface too much).  I'm still working with a couple custom palettes comprising of Winsor Newton's half pan watercolors and a mixture of dried tube watercolors (with a lot of Holbien's Iridori line in there, there's some great colors!).

I really enjoyed this opportunity to help commemorate a special time in a young family's life, and I hope Michael enjoys his gift.  This commission took a little longer than usual (three days rather than two) to paint, but that was because I was multitasking on several projects.  If you're interested in a commission from me (I don't just do portraits, I paint original characters based on descriptions, and do fanart as well!) there's two ways you can buy!  If you want me to see ALL the monies, you can do it through my shop, or if you feel more comfortable, you can purchase a commission via my Etsy shop