Grand Finale and New Beginning

There are certain people who are just meant to be together. Nothing is more obvious when you are in their presence. You can literally feel the love and admiration they have for each other just from the way they look at each other.

I had the opportunity to cross paths with a beautiful couple like this, Margaret and Lorne, about a year ago. Margaret and Lorne have been married just over ten years. Their first date was at the Lac Lehmy Casino in Gatineau, QC watching fireworks. This is how Lorne described the scene for me:

“At the time, the show ended and the crowd got up and left.  As the last few were climbing up the hill to their cars someone turned around and shouted back at us, “Hey, you two.  The show’s over!” and we realized that we were sitting alone in the centre of the parking lot under the umbrella, oblivious to the fact that everyone else had already left.  I think it was at that precise moment I realized that I was in deep trouble!”

This painting was a 10 year wedding anniversary gift from Lorne to Margaret and I couldn’t have been more touched that he trusted me with something so special. The instructions he gave me were basically that description above: fireworks at the casino, sitting on lawn chairs, sharing an umbrella, lost in the moment.

Below is the progression of the painting. (The green line in the first one is just painting tape that I used to make a straight line for the horizon).

Progression of the painting

And the final painting that Lorne gave to Margaret for their 10 year wedding anniversary:

"First Date" or "Grand Finale and New Beginning"
“First Date” or “Grand Finale and New Beginning” – 30″x40″ – Acrylic on Canvas

Hanging

As an artist, there is no bigger compliment than knowing that something I created truly touched someone emotionally. After receiving this gift from her husband, Margaret made sure to let me know that she was so deeply touched that it evoked happy tears. I don’t like making anyone cry, but in this instance, I couldn’t be happier.

Margaret and Lorne, I wish you two a lifetime of love and happiness <3

 

Paintings as Wedding Gifts

In my last blog post, I talked about how if I don’t have a deadline, I let things linger and don’t prioritize them. Luckily, the opposite is also true and this painting is the perfect example of how I buckle down under pressure and get things done! I only had about 2 weeks to finish this painting (the client gave me about 1 months notice, but I was away on vacation for 2 of those weeks) and think it came out pretty great.

This particular one was for a lady who wanted a gift for her groom-to-be on their wedding day. Isn’t that cute? I didn’t know that was a thing, but now that I do, I’m really touched that she trusted me with that. She pointed out 3 paintings of mine that she liked, and said “combine these into something amazing but include a bridge with Clark and I on it – the location where he proposed.” This was the montage of photos I got which show the cute couple and the bridge:

Amy and Clark photo montage
Amy and Clark photo montage

Initially, I was leaning towards a colour scheme similar to After Midnight, but on three separate canvases:

IMG_3962

IMG_3969

IMG_3974

Then at about this point, I decided to go for more of a Leonid Afremov inspired colour scheme:

IMG_3975

img_3976

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final middle

And in 2 weeks flat, the painting was done, and delivered to the client literally on the eve of her wedding, so that she could give it to her groom-to-be the following morning. Below are some photos the couple sent me of the painting once they hung it up.

Wedding Painting

I’d like to wish them all the best in their new lives together.

Did you know bride/groom wedding gifts were a thing? What did you get your bride/groom ? Leave a comment below, I’m super curious! 

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McLaren, Welcome to the Team

In the previous post I mentioned how in 2015 I only did commissioned paintings. This blog post is showcasing another one of those.

This one is also the perfect example of why I need deadlines. The client gave me no deadline and said I can take my time. So take my time I did… I am so embarrassed to admit that I started this painting almost a year ago!

And so it begins...
And so it begins…
Probably 3 months later... at the rate I was going
Probably 3 months later… at the rate I was going

SOOO many times, I would make internal deadlines that I would try to meet but then other stuff would come up and I never prioritized it.

Probably 6 months in... Starting to look like something finally
Probably 6 months in… Starting to look like something finally
The end is so close yet so far
The end is so close yet so far

However, in the end, we have a painting that he loves and I am definitely proud of.

Adam with his painting.
Adam with his painting.

You may have noticed that this is not my first car painting… Although I have a mechanical engineering degree, I am certainly not a car person – this car theme kind of spiraled because my dad asked for one a few years ago, and then several other people came to me after that one and said, hey I want one like that too! Adam was no exception. He is a fellow mechanical engineer though so that’s pretty awesome.

And as such, my collection of car paintings is growing and growing. Although they were all commissioned paintings and thus sold, prints are available here.

McLaren, welcome to the team! And in similar news, I am starting another commissioned car painting that needs to be completed by Aug 1st, 2016, so stay tuned for that. It will be my largest painting to date: 72″x48″!!!

McLaren
48″x36″ – McLaren

Recap of 2015 and Goals for 2016

I can’t even believe that 2015 is wrapping up. Where did it go?

Beginning a painting of poppies
The beginning of a painting of poppies

2015 was a big year for me: I traveled a lot for my “real” job, I fell in love with someone very special, I squeezed in a vacation to Hawaii, and to wrap up the year, I bought my first house! It was fun and exciting and busy to say the least! With all this, painting was totally the forgotten middle child.

Adding colour to the flowers and leaves
Adding colour to the flowers and leaves

Some stats from my website for 2015 that prove that painting was totally neglected this year:

Clearly the stats show that I am putting in much less effort, work, and time into my art and accompanying blog since I had very few new paintings and blog posts last year. Interestingly enough though, my range has increased since I went from reaching 96 countries in 2013, to 112 in 2014 to 121 in 2015. I’ve also sold a lot of prints on Etsy which is something I’ve never done much of before.

Everything is blooming
Everything is blooming

Looking back at 2015, I notice that I only did commissioned paintings. I basically just waited for someone to call me and ask me to paint them something specific. I didn’t do any of my own paintings where I channeled my own creative ideas – I let others tell me what inspires them. On one hand, I’m really proud that I have built up enough of a following that I can do this – previously no one was knocking on my door and throwing money at me in exchange for personalized paintings. However, I’m also a little sad when I look back on the year and don’t see any reference to 2015 hanging on my own walls. It’s like the year never happened. I have several 2013 and 2014 paintings that I have held onto but 2015 is just a ghost year in my painting history.

The end is near
The end is near

2016 is going to be different. I’m realistic enough to know not to expect miracles, so I am going to set the goal of completing only 3 paintings of my own and continuing to take commissions (however many come my way). Realistically, my full-time “real job” (engineer/consultant, that is completely unrelated to painting) keeps me plenty busy and also fulfilled as I truly do love it so I don’t ever intend on making painting a full time gig, but it certainly can (and should) take up more of my time than Netflix watching does.

36"x24" - Acrylic on Canvas
Completed – 36″x24″ – Acrylic on Canvas

I have already identified my painting room in my new house – it is big, with lots of light and it’s going to be great. And now that I have shared this goal with the interwebs, I feel accountable. So look forward to some original paintings coming out of Agata’s Art Corner in 2016.

Displayed in the living room
Displayed in the living room

Happy New Year to you all and thank you for reading!

Side view
Side view

What are some of your goals for 2016? Art and non-art related. Please share in the comments :) 

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