Monday, April 7, 2014

When the Size of a Painting and the Size of a Wall don't Match Up

Sometimes it happens...A person falls in love with a painting they see in an exhibit. They take down the dimensions at the gallery, then go home and measure their wall, and they come to the conclusion that it doesn't quite fit.  In some cases the wall is expansive and the painting is just not quite large enough to engage the space. And in some cases the painting is too big or not the right proportions.  In the past year I have had two clients who originally saw one of my paintings in the gallery, but then asked me to do a similar piece for them, custom designed for a particular location in their home. I love to do this as it allows me to get to know them, and see the environment where the painting will go. It also gives me the opportunity to make the painting more personal.

I painted Oliver's Dream last fall after visiting the client in Hobe Sound, Florida over the summer. They live very near the ocean but do not have a view, so she asked that the painting open the space with a view of the water, and she also wanted to bring some of their tropical surroundings into the room. I used a palette that related to the interior while introducing some new colors such as the vibrant clementine wall.  I  painted a tile floor and worked with multiple point perspective with the eye level on the eye level of someone standing in the room to give depth and a feeling that one could walk right into the painting. I also incorporated some architectural elements from the room, such as the large Palladian windows, and symmetry.

My client asked that their adorable King Charles spaniel named Oliver be the main character in the painting, so he sits rather royally in the arm chair on the left, making eye contact with the viewer.  He loves to chase salamanders so there are salamanders of various colors hidden in the flora of the fabrics as well as on the glass table top and in the flowering vines. The client had especially liked my mermaid paintings so we placed a mermaid sitting on the windowsill, playing the flute for Oliver and the various seabirds. There is also a painting within the painting of her grandchildren, and the couple dancing below the palm trees by the water represents her three happily married sons.