A painted portrait combines traditional photographic portraiture with hand-applied painting artistry. Using a mixed media approach, we blend a variety of mediums and tools, from the camera to the tablet to traditional artists' mediums. I use both modern electronic brushes along with traditional artists' oil brushes. Each portrait commission begins with one or more reference images and is transformed into a work of art, initially on the computer using sophisticated painting brushwork, to deconstruct and to rebuild the image stroke by stroke, as a hand-painted rendering. Later, that initial underpainting is transferred to canvas and is enhanced with oils, textures and glazes. In the end, you'll have a painting that everyone will love!
What sets the studio apart is the experience of knowing what makes an excellent portrait, based on the subject's pose and expression. In the case of a client-supplied reference image, you will be guided on which image will make the best painting, and be offered initial concepts to help you visualize the creative possibilities. In the end, there will be no surprises about how the subject is portrayed, and the authentic likeness of that individual will carry through to the end.
While a traditional fine artist starting from a blank canvas has extraordinary talent, there are times that a person’s likeness may not carry through to the end. With the traditional arts, there is always the chance that a finished painting might not actually look like the person. Why take the chance that your painting not be exactly the way you expect?
Modern tools today allow us the advantage of electronically compositing and constructing the ideal reference image long before the first stroke begins. The reference image I use for any given painting might come from a combination of multiple images blended together. You'll be able to have the painting you always wanted and be able to see the progress along the way.
Not at all. Each painting is a labor of love, with extensive handwork, stroke by stroke, using an electronic brush and tablet, followed by a series of hand-applied oils & glazes using traditional artists' brushes that bring out a rich texture and the feel of an original oil painting.
Most but not all paintings. A number of commissions I create are able to emulate the distinct look, feel and visual texture of a real painting even without the final application of oils. Some of the painted portraits I create for clients are stunning even without the additional layers of oils & glazes. From time to time, a client may not have the luxury of waiting the additional weeks necessary for traditional oil paints to cure prior to delivery.
Yes, as long as we have permission. If you have images that were taken by a professional photographer, United States copyright laws require that I obtain written permission. I have created some beautiful paintings from images taken by others, and as long as permission is granted, then yes!
Great question! The best plan is to email or text your photograph (sometimes a few reference photos are helpful) for me to look at and evaluate if it will make a great painting. I'll typically get back to you in a day or two.
You may be surprised what can work as a reference photo. Even with less-than-ideal quality photographs, beautiful paintings can emerge. Before dismissing a photo as not being worthy, send it over for a free review.
I'm able to create a painting of any scale or design to match your desires, whether a classic head & shoulders or a full-length view.
For painted portraits that depict a 3/4 length, have more than one subject, or include a complex background, I often suggest a size starting at 16x20" or 20x24". For full length portraits, it is not uncommon to scale your finished painting at 30x40" or larger. Often the size and composition is determined by where you plan to hang the work of art.
For a classic head & shoulders portrait painting of a single subject, the petite 12x12" size is a scale for a charming portrait that conveys the personality of an individual child.
Together, we’ll discover what best suits the vision of what you most want so that you have a special piece of artwork to enjoy for years and years.
Simple head & shoulder paintings which are ideal for one subject, such as a child or a pet, are available for $1600. Most custom paintings on canvas range $1900-3900 and vary in investment based on size, scale and complexity. Together we'll determine where you will hang it and what is the proper size to enjoy it everyday!
It varies depending on the number of commissions I am working on at the time. In most cases, commissions take 6-12 weeks to allow for revisions, proper dry time and/or framing. Some commissions can be turned around sooner if there is a special occasion that needs to be met!
It's easy. We start with a conversation to discuss your wishes for the painting you envision, where it will hang, and what source images we'll use. I can work from photographs you supply, or we can arrange a photographic sitting. I offer a complimentary consultation and image evaluation of whatever source images you wish to share. Call the studio at 978-744-6918 today. If you have a photograph to review for consideration, feel free to email it to email@example.com.
A Painting Celebrating a Magical Moment...
A Memorial Painting Honoring a Mother...
A Painting Celebrating a Milestone Birthday...
Custom Painting for a Special Occasion...
Sometimes it's hard to know which photo will make the best painting.
Worth Every Penny!
"I have thousands of photographs on my phone and yet none that were quite special enough to say "this is my James". Then I came across Bobbie and the paintings that she creates from snapshots and fell in love! I knew right away this is what would show him how special he is to me. When the painting arrived in the mail, he jumped up and down screaming "It is ME! It is James! Worth every penny spent! Thank you Bobbie for melting my heart with this beautiful painting."
"When we work together, you'll be guided through each step of the process, know what to expect, and there will be no surprises about a person's likeness. In the end, you'll have the custom painting you have always envisioned."
Bobbie Bush, portrait artist