I have had many commissions over the years, from friend’s wedding invites to large well-known companies asking me to produce specific pieces of artwork.
Since working at the Manchester Craft and Design Centre I have had a number of commissions which have been very enjoyable, but also quite challenging. I love producing bright floral artwork and also patterns. I have done this since I have been young so it comes fairly easy to me. The subject matter I find most difficult is people. I am sure a lot of artists would agree with me (maybe not my friend Rosana Ibarrola who is a natural at the human form). My first commission of this sort was when a man came into the studio with a photo of himself and his sister. He wanted me to produce a design in a 1920’s style for his sister’s birthday. He wanted it very similar to the photo. As an artist you always want things to look aesthetically pleasing, so I decided to close the baby’s mouth. When I showed the gentleman what I had done he liked it, but any wee tweak I had made, like the one I mentioned above, he wanted changed. This wasn’t a problem, but it made me realise that I should find out a bit more what the client is wanting and not put my own slant on it. Here is the photo and the finished design.
Another commission was from a gentleman who wanted a drawing of a beautiful little girl surrounded by flowers. I was excited at the fact that I could still include flowers in my image. From what the gentleman said she sounded like a very special girl so I jumped at the chance. I think that after my first experience I knew I wouldn’t find it easy, but I wanted to fulfil his brief to the best of my ability. I started with everything I could draw easily, like the floral background and the floral dress. I left the face to last as I knew I was going to find this the most difficult. It did take me time and also a lot of asking opinions - thanks Finbar, mum, dad and Jed. I sometimes don’t take constructive criticism well, but I do always listen, even if I am in a bit of a mood. I am very happy with the end result and I really hope the wee girl and her mum and dad are too. One thing for sure is when I go back to doing my florals it is a breeze in comparison to drawing people. It is good to get out of your comfort zone now and again as you learn a lot along the way by doing so.