You Have to Laugh!

2011Article posted by Gilly

This entry is really just an excuse to wish all my loyal ‘readers’ a Very Merry Xmas and wonderful New Year. Lots of painting, lots of creative thoughts, and lots of joy from the amazing art that we all produce be we beginners or seasoned artists. We all have so much to offer the world of art of which we are all members. But, now for the laugh….....

A great deal has been going on here with all the run-up to Xmas, plus I’ve been completing a couple more commissions. I’m beginning to see the light at the end of the tunnel. I do appreciate all the good advice that my artist friends have sent to me and I’ve certainly been thinking a lot about it. I have decided that I will not take on any more portraits, unless they are for family, friends, or a previous client. They are too stressful and I much prefer my wildlife. At least a bird doesn’t tell you when you have a feather out of place! (See how long my resolve lasts, ‘though!)

But, here’s the laugh - I completed the portrait of my military gentleman in his mess uniform. It was the fourth portrait that I’d done for him and I did enjoy pastelling the beautiful crimson waistcoat and lapels, and loved doing the fireplace! However, he was very ‘picky’ over this one and complained that I’d made his lips too ‘full’. When I showed him the photo he’d given to me which I’d transferred to my iPad to work from, he was very surprised that his lips are very full. He said it was amazing how people viewed you differently from how you viewed yourself. However, he wanted me to remodel the lips more to his own perception of himself, which I did. I also pointed out that gaining a likeness on a head that is only about 3cm high was very difficult (because he wanted a full length portrait but of the same dimensions as the previous portraits). He thought about that for a minute, then said, “Yes, I understand that. Of course, if I’d wanted a proper portrait I’d have gone to a proper portrait artist and paid a lot more”!!!!!!!!

Well, my gasted was absolutely flabbered! All I could do was laugh!  And he did apologise immediately, saying he didn’t mean it quite as it sounded! But, it certainly put me in my place! I do have one more portrait to do for him and that will probably be the last for this particular client.

I have also done a couple of paintings purely for my own enjoyment -  kookaburras and swans . I also enjoyed pastelling a Clydesdale mare - she lives in Arizona and is owned by the sister of a long-time friend of mine who is from Minneapolis. The Clydie’s owner runs a farm with her husband and they are doing it really tough, so I’ve done this portrait more or less as a gift. My friend makes lovely jewellery so she sent me necklaces and earrings as payment. I’ll be mailing Jasmine off to Arizona next week.

I’m now painting rainbow lorikeets - it is a commission but I’m loving it. So, yes, we see where I need to be going, don’t we? Still, it was lovely to receive a substantial amount of money last week - payment for two commissioned works and one painting that sold at exhibition about a month ago. Nice little windfall for Xmas.

So, here’s wishing everyone the greatest joy for the festive season and looking forward to a very painterly 2012. Take care, drive safely, don’t drink too much, and I’ll be back in the New Year with lots more observations and masterpieces!!!!!!

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