Search terms that bring many people to this website are often ones about giving paintings as gifts. I’ve written about this several times (here) and the consensus is, paintings usually do not make good gifts. Everyone’s style is different and it can be an expensive and awkward gift if you’re unprepared. But there are a small number of exceptions, and here they are:
1. When you know the person really well. For example, your wife/husband/cat of 20+ years. Chances are, you know exactly what he/she likes and hates by now. These are all paintings that were a gift for a spouse:
2. When they tell you exactly what they like. For example, if you’re ever in this situation:
“Hunnie, I love this painting. I think it would look great in our home”
Get hunnie the painting. He/she is being super clear. There is zero ambiguity there.
Or you get an email from your mom with a picture of something she saw elsewhere and loves, with a caption: my birthday is coming up.
You should get them the painting in these situations. Here are paintings I did after similar situations, all three for my parents:
3. If they previously owned it but it was burned in a fire, eaten by the dog, evaporated into thin air… If you’re just replacing it, I’d say your odds are good that he/she will continue to like it.
I recently did a commissioned piece for a colleague who wanted it as a gift for his wife. He said the image was her desktop background on her computer and she was really into meditation and yoga, so I’d say our odds were good here. Here is the progression of the painting:
And the moment we presented the gift to her, which she had absolutely no idea about. Surprises like these are my favourite! They are such a cute couple and I was honoured to put a smile on their faces.
If you are interested in a commissioned piece of art work, perhaps as a birthday or Christmas gift for someone special, feel free to contact me. More information about my rates can be found here.