October 22, 2013

Hydrangea Bouquet - Commission

Hydrangea Bouquet
7 x 9 Gouache

I recently sold the previous hydrangea painting and was asked to paint a companion piece. 

Commissions always bring up an uncertainty in me. Perhaps it is related to being in advertising design and always feeling that I'm trying to "read" the client's mind and anticipate their expectations. Or it could be one of those times when we just plain old have moments of self doubt. Whatever the reason, it creates a different energy around the painting I'm creating. 

In this case it was trying to recapture the same feeling that went into the original piece but I didn't think it would be a problem. Well, after 2-3 unsuccessful attempts I finally came up with something
something that would match. Admittedly, there was something that bothered me.The flowers seemed too round. I thought maybe I was being too critical of myself and thought I'd let her decide. Well, my intuition was right! (I should have paid heed to that) So I was back to square one. 

I kept asking myself why this was so hard to capture what I was after. I then realized all that goes into a painting. It is more than just the paint or the technique, it is everything else. We are not machines. Painting is our voice. As important as our words and mannerisms. We respond to the mood of the moment, to our surroundings, our present state of mind, the light, the air, our energy - all factors that effect that expression.

In the case of the first one - I was in California surrounded by family, we were celebrating, full of love and excitement in seeing each other and meeting my newborn granddaughter for the first time. While I can look back on that time and bask in the memory of that time, the truth of it is we are in the present and there are other influences present.

As it turned out, (and quit being so hard on myself) I reworked the painting and my collector loved it.
It still doesn't carry the same energy as the first, but that's okay.

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