About a year and a half ago I received a commission to paint some vegetables that grew in my patrons' garden in Connecticut. This couple has been very kind to me and had purchased two pieces prior to this one. But this painting posed a challenge for me. This was my first commission and the pressure was on. I was given vegetables along with some reference shots to come up with the composition. After completing the painting both my patrons and I agreed that it wasn't my best work. I could do better and we all knew it. Now the commission became more personal, it was time to prove myself that I could do good work.
Watercolor study for Home Grown II
When I got home after our meeting I started to panic because it had been months since the commission was agreed on and since I was given the subject, physically, to paint. After so long, I no longer had the veggies and I didn't have a way of getting a replacement since my patrons' vegetables were huge turquoise blue squash and a beautiful round bright orange squash. All I had were pictures taken after they were picked from the garden and my own shots I took of them in different compositions with other subjects for my own work. I started to make mental compositions for about a week or two about how I wanted the painting to come out. One night after work, and not in the mood to paint, I made a sketch from my imagination. I needed to add color to this drawing so that I could get a better idea of the feel of the soon to be painting. This watercolor study shows the work done on that night and the composition that would seal the deal.