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Commissioning a piece of original artwork is more than just purchasing a painted canvas and frame; it is a gratifying experience that should give you years of enjoyment as well as the satisfaction of knowing that you own the canvas that the artist used to create their vision, particularly if that vision is one you connect with.

But what do you do when you, as a client, have a vision that is quite specific to your needs? Perhaps it is an artistic representation of a favourite view, a portrait of a loved one or pet, or even a representation or an imaginary image that encapsulates your feelings, or a memory to be preserved forever. The answer may be to commission an artist to create that piece for you.

Before approaching any artist with a possible commission there are a few things you need to think about:

Where/who is it for?
A lot of commissions are presents for loved ones. For such a thoughtful and generous gift to be a complete success, there are a few things to consider. Where will the piece be kept? What size space is there for it? And what colours will the artist need to consider using/leaving out? It is quite disheartening to find your ideal painting and then feel you have to redecorate your lounge for it to work!

How much do you want to spend?
Very few people have the luxury of knowing they can just pick up a piece of art they like without worrying about the cost. If you can let the artist know what budget you're working within you're more likely to get value for your money and avoid disappointment.

What size?
The size of a piece does not define it's value. A miniature may well cost significantly more than a 12"x16" painting.  However, size is very important when considering which wall or room you want it for.

What image? 
This question doesn't just concern what you want the finished piece to look like, but how you plan to convey that image/idea to the artist. Remember that the artist cannot read minds (on the whole) or see around corners, so if you want a painting of a photograph, try to be clear about any alterations you have in mind. With imaginary pieces I find it useful to mock up a light sketch for approval before putting brush to canvas.

What medium?
Materials are of upmost importance as they need to stand the test of time. It is essential to ensure the artist uses top quality materials whether working in lead pencil or oils; it is terribly sad to see a much loved painting with colours fading and paper yellowing. Each medium has different finishes, which appeal to different people. Look through the gallery pages for examples of different mediums. To see more information on materials I use click here.


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