Is Commissioning an Artist a Good Idea?
I recently had a video chat with a commission recipient Joono about the original watercolor commissions of her two young daughters that her husband Chris gave her for her birthday. I wanted to find out what she thought, how she felt about the paintings, and whether she thought it was a good gift for her.
She told me that she had no idea what he was going on when Chris asked her for photos of their girls and her. And when he asked for more, she was scratching her head. By the time she had sent him more than 50 photos, Joono wondered what he could possibly be up to. When he asked her what she was planning to do with a blank wall in their home, she got nervous that he was planning some huge eyesore of a wall-size poster.
The truth was that Chris had commissioned me to create two original 8x10 watercolor paintings of their little girls.
The Big Reveal & Her Reaction
When Joono’s birthday arrived, Chris told her to close her eyes, then led her through their home to the two framed paintings. When she opened her eyes, she was so surprised.
“I was floored! I never in a million years imagined this type of a gift,” she said. “I don’t think I gave him enough credit.”
Seeing those paintings brought tears to her eyes.
“It was such a great mom moment to see both girls — it encapsulated them perfectly. It was really touching. I definitely cried.”
Chris had taken a cue from Marty, one of my other clients and a mutual friend, who hired me to paint an original commission for his wife. He knew that his wife would love this unique gift. We worked together to come up with the best option for her birthday. He told me that Joono, who is originally from California, loved the beach. We went through all the beach photos to find the ones that could work as a watercolor. We finally settled on one photo, but I split up the girl’s poses to make two paintings rather than one.
Joono told me that she loved seeing the joy of the ocean through her daughter’s eyes. Seeing her younger daughter’s joy on her face, running towards the water and her older daughter busy playing in the sand made her so happy.
“I’m glad that you chose and that he chose that photo. It was perfect,” she said.
Are Commissions Worth It?
“What I love about the pieces you made for us is the softness and sweetness. I think it was special that you wanted other photos and that you wanted to hear about the personalities of our girls because it shows in the painting..the sweetness I see in the paintings really made it more special for me.”
See our full conversation here:
I make each painting custom to the people they are for, paying close attention to the details that mean so much. I truly want to know the personalities of the children I paint. It helps me to get in tune with who they are and helps me to depict them more as their parents see them.
If you’ve ever thought of hiring an artist to create a custom gift for someone you love, take it from Joono. She loved it and so will you.