Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Process of Commissions

Work comes to me in any number of ways, almost always commissioned. In response to a comment from yesterday's blog, I will outline the process of the Mercury Grill project.

The restaurant owner has a design staff. The designer met with my client, the gallery owner. They did a presentation with an assortment of art, narrowing down the "look" the designer is going for. When the final artwork was decided on, the gallery contacted me for pricing of specific sizes.

When the pricing is approved by the restaurant owner, via the designer, the gallery contacts me again and sends me the imagery that the designer responded to. In this case, they were small etchings. My challenge at that point is to create artwork that evokes the same feel as the the samples, yet are completely different. That's difficult, because I first have to determine what it is about the sample art that they were drawn to. Was it color, shape, line quality, contrast, composition? In this case it's a combination of those things.

I then created a mockup. Comparing my mockup to the originals, there was a certain similarity of line, although the composition and color was different. That mockup wasn't exactly right in my eyes, and I tried an entirely different process on the second mockup. I submitted both to the designer. As expected, the owner chose the design of the first, and the process of the second.

No purchase order for this project, but due to a short turnaround time, I started immediately. All twelve paintings are due on Monday, but I notified the gallery that I will not be able to make that deadline. These paintings have turned out to be very labor intensive.

You might be wondering why I am commissioned to create art that originated with another artist. In this case, the etchings were small, and came from France. Not only was there no way to commission the original artist, but an etching of this size (18" x 66") would hardly be possible.

In other cases, the gallery always contacts the original artist first, if it's not my work.

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