Thursday, October 15, 2015

Art Process: Grey Scale Mountains Commission

Image of completed mountain landscape with title and Commission Requirements checklist: Semi-Abstract Mountains, Grey-Scale, Just Landscape (No Animals)
"Grey-Scale Mountains" was my first commission piece and I painted it in March of this year. It made a great first commission project because the requirements were simple; they wanted a semi-abstract mountain landscape to fit the space above their headboard in the master bedroom. They also wanted it to be a grey-scale piece and requested that I keep the landscape free of wildlife.

To start, I took photos and measurements of the space they wanted to fill. The space was long and slender and I would need to ship the piece to them when complete so we decided on five canvases that would hang separately.
five blank canvases

 Since I wanted the landscape to be a single continuous painting, I decided to attach the canvases together on the back. I used boxing tape with pieces of foam-core to stabilize the piece. 
back side of five blank canvases taped together

I started with an abstract background. I knew I wanted a cloudy sunset feel even though it would be grey-scale. I placed the sun across two canvases just off center.
grey, beige, and white abstract sun and clouds

 While the background dried, I sent off an in-progress picture to the client and sketched out the mountain shapes I wanted. 
(The other rough sketch on this page is for a piece I have yet to start but would still like to do one day.)
Rough sketches of two long landscapes

I decided (with the helpful critique of my partner) that the lake shore was too round in the sketch and that I'd fix this in the painting. Then I painted in the mountains and lake reflections (sorry, no "in-progress" shots of the mountains...I was in the zone). 
Dark grey mountains and lake reflections over white, beige, and grey abstract background

When I thought it might be finished, I celebrated with a glass of wine while it dried and then came back to it for touch-ups. 
A hand holding a glass of red wine with a painting in the background.

Finally, I separated the canvases and set them out on the red carpet in my living-room to take pictures and see what my client thought. 
A five-canvas painting of a mountain landscape with the canvases spread apart as they would go on the wall.

I was happy with how it turned out, and more importantly, the client was happy with it. 

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