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The Bread, The Wine, The Book ·

The Bread, The Wine, The Book
Medium: Oil
Base: Canvas
Year: 2011
Oil painting on canvas of one of the layout photographed for a commissioned early in 2010. A photo shoot was held in the client's home home and she had input all during the process so that the composition was exactly to her liking. She chose the photograph that she wanted for her commission and gave me permission to use all of the other pictures for my own artworks in the future which has left me with a lot of very nice layouts to try out.
This painting was a great opportunity to try my hand at still life in pastel and oils both as a final artwork in itself but also as a preliminary drawing for the final oil painting.
Still life is a subject which I have not ventured near very much in the past, so this commission was a challenge not only in subject matter but also in the final size of the work which was 4 feet wide by 3 feet deep. Probably the largest painting I had ever done!
This is the reason why before starting on the oil painting commission of a still life scene, I wanted to do some preliminary drawings in pastel.
They give the same sort of feel for the subject as oils but are quicker. This was also a chance for me to familiarise myself with the subject and work out any kinks in my skills in any part of the painting. The pastel was only 40 x 30cm whereas the final painting is a lot larger. The preliminary didn't need to be the same size to see what colours I would be using and if I needed to tweak the lighting and shadows a bit.
My client gave me plenty of time to get the painting done and I didn't rush it, she is a valued client whom I have known for many years and I wanted it to be extra special. So if I needed to do several preliminary drawings and small paintings I felt I had the time, until I get exactly the right effect.
At every completion of a major stage of the work I photographed it and sent a colour laser to her to check. This gives the opportunity for consultation and feedback and helps me to make sure I am on track and supplying something that my client will be totally happy with. It also gives me the opportunity to get progress payments which I find is far better than asking for the whole amount at the completion of a work.
As it was I had the work done and dry by June 2010 and was able to deliver it over the long weekend break for the Queen's birthday holiday.
It was wonderful to see her delighted with the painting finally hanging on her lounge room wall in a very central location, as nearly the centrepiece for the room. I gave her one of the small preliminary paintings I did as a gift to hang elsewhere in the house which she also likes very much. It was my way of thanking her for commissioning me to do the work for her and being such a great client.
I am looking forward to more commissions to complete in the future for new clients with new subjects to tackle and overcome. Inquiries regarding commissioned artworks are always most welcome!
Dimensions: 120 cm (width) × 90 cm (height)
Ownership: Private collector
Credit: Original photography by Stephen Welker

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