Commission a portrait - being part of the classic tradition

pastel portrait sample - artist's motherIntroduction

Today, when people think of portraits they probably first think of photography which of course, can produce amazing images in the hands of a skilled photographer. Sadly, the unprecedented ease with which we are saturated by images from myriad digital gadgets can numb us to a more contemplative, heartfelt appreciation of traditional artistic representation.

That said, I recognize that in our fast paced modern lives most don't have the time for the lengthy sittings the traditional procedures require.

Fortunately, photography does allow a skilled artist to make the best use of your valuable time by allowing the creation to occur at a slower pace to achieve a proper finish.

My goal is to produce a result that although partially derived from the use of photographs, also transcends them by cultivating my response to the sitter in the process. Merely repeating what the photo already did would miss the point.

The use of traditional materials provide a personalized connection with the great art of the past which stood the test of centuries.


redhead pastel portrait sample 12x16Basic Procedure

The portrait procedure begins with a discussion between the artist and client to determine the mood, setting, size, medium and price of the portrait.

If the client is local to me, I will preferably hold a brief photographic session to get good reference material for a nominal fee. If time permits, I may also do some quick on site sketches to solidify my memory and response to the subject, which will greatly help when interpreting the photos later.

Subsequent to the photo session, I will then select several photographs to be used as references and discuss them with the client.

Upon the client's approval of the proposed composition along with payment of a deposit, I will then proceed with the portrait at my studio. Four weeks is usually sufficient to complete a typical work, but the process is variable so gifts should be planned well in advance.

Prior to delivery, a digital image of the work will be sent for any comments or adjustments the client may have, which will be incorporated on a best effort basis. The balance due would be paid at time of delivery.

If the client cannot sit for my photo reference session or they desire a posthumous portrait, I will discuss a selection of the client's images to see which would work best for a painting or drawing.

Many interesting photos don't necessarily translate well to painting or drawing, so it is best to have a number of them to discuss.

Please call 301-661-2739 or e-mail me for more information.

Oil on Canvas (classical style) 18x24

A few more pastel samples
redhead with red shirt pastel portrait sample
renee pastel sample  16x20 image
detail view of pastel sample - eyes
detail view
pastel animal portrait sample (dog)
Harrison Ford - pastel portrait sample
sepia pastel portrait sample
*reference photo by PJBayens on flickr, with permission

All images copyright the artist, 2000-2013 all rights reserved