Best Friends, 10123, commissioned portrait © Carol Nelson Fine Art


These ladies are best friends. One of them asked me to paint this portrait of the two of them as a surprise gift for the other one. I agreed to do it, but now I think I should have declined.

I was working from a small photo and, as you can see, it was a flash photo with both of them looking directly into the camera. That is precisely the type of reference photo I dislike intensely. It makes a good photo, but a lousy portrait.

Right now, I'm going to say NEVER AGAIN. If you study the work of famous portrait artists, their work never looks like an ad for good dental checkups. These ladies have great smiles, but when I look at this painting, all I see is teeth. You would think, after my 100 portraits project, I would have known the pitfalls of painting this photo.


======================================================

8 comments:

Myrna Wacknov said...

Carol, I think they will be happy with it. The good news is it is sold! I think your 100 portrait idea was brilliant. You choose who you want to paint and how you want to paint it and then they want it and it gets sold without the usual commissioned portrait stress! I refuse to do commissioned portraits anymore because I don't want to worry about what someone else will like.

Keep the great art work coming!!!!

julia Kulish/ Art Speaking said...

I giggled all the way through your post! :-) Artists are such tough people on themselves! I can see how their positioning was not ideal - but these ladies are going to absolutely love it. You did a terrific job!

Marian Fortunati said...

Well, I think you did a terrific job....
Teeth are especially hard but at this point I think you could paint anything and it would look great!!

Love all the colors in the skin!

Joanne Hanson said...

I bet they will want a second one so they both have one! They will love it!

AutumnLeaves said...

Gosh Carol...this is how we separate the wheat from the chaff as artists. Consider me chaff because I really think this is a beautiful portrait. I like the lighting and the front on pose of these two. I find myself envying their friendship and wishing I had such a wonderful friend in my life!

subrudon said...

Don't be so hard on yourself, Carol. Just keep painting!

Bonnie Heather said...

I agree with Myrna and Julia, they will love it. You always make people sparkle.

Dana Cooper said...

Carol, you are being too hard on yourself! You created an amazing portrait despite the poor photo...give yourself a break girl, they will love it!