I always accept commissions with mixed feelings - initially there is always great excitment that anyone would want me to produce a piece of artwork specially for them but then there is also plenty of apprehension that the recipient might not like what I've done. Some commissions are obviously easier than others but some I agonise over. A recent piece that I've just completed has been a bit like that. A friend approached me a few weeks ago to make a picture as a Christmas present. He sent me a photograph of a view that was special to him and his friend and wanted me to interprete it in textiles. This was the photograph.
First of all I needed to know what made this special to them - Brian told me it ws the way the view was framed by the doorway, the sunlight and the chairs on the patio. I played with lots of ideas, did some sketches and tried some non literal interpretations but they weren't working so in the end I've made something quite literal for me. I've played with the colour to make it more "my own" but hope the feeling of sunlight is still there. I have also kept the framed view which I liked and cut down the number of chairs - think I would have prefered to leave them out completely! It is worked on silk with quite a lot of machine embroidery in the landscape and a sprinkling of gold on the tree tops that does look like sunlight. Overall I think I'm quite pleased (apart from the table and chair) but now of course I've got all the apprehension before Brian gets to see it! Here's a sneak preview... I'm pretty sure the recipient doesn't read my blog so safe to share it!
It was an interesting commission in another way as a recent Opus assignment was to "Find situations around the house where a view is framed by windows and doors and make a series of drawings based on these compositions." I enjoyed this assignment, especially as one of my favourite painting is The Open Window by Matisse. How I wish I could paint like this... or better still interprete a view into textiles to look like this... dream on Gina !
Instead I made a pencil drawing of Stewart's wardrobe... so much tidier than mine (which I wouldn't want to share with the world!)
A very quick pen and ink sketch of our hallway - very carefully leaving out all the clutter such as disgarded shoes, coats and school bags!
And finally a collage based on a photograph I took on holiday a couple of years ago. None of them quite up to Matisse but I enjoyed the assignment.
I had better go and make another pot of tea... I've got a couple of guys here laying tiles on the bathroom floor... one of whom must be almost half my age and keeps calling me "babe"... not sure whether to be flattered or insulted... or perhaps I should suggest he gets his eyes tested!