Commissioning a Portrait from Linda Kooluris Dobbs

The Process

Linda will meet with the subject/client in a relaxed environment to discuss the location(s) of the sitting(s), the location the portrait will hang, the background, clothing, mood of the work, time restrictions of the subject and the timeframe within which the work will be completed. Linda is willing to travel within or out of the country at the subject/client’s expense to gather the needed images. In the case of a deceased subject or surprise gift, photographs of the subject will be supplied to see if the work is possible.

After the client and Linda sign a contract, half the commission fee will be paid before embarking on the project. Linda is very sensitive to the demanding schedules her portrait subjects have and has a very simple and easy process set up to not make the subject agonize over sittings. She will go to the location(s) agreed upon with her camera equipment and shoot approximately two hours to assure the subject is at ease and creative possibilities are explored.

After the slides are developed, Linda will edit the images down to a few possibilities to eliminate confusion and then have a viewing of them with the subject to decide upon the path that will be taken. If the client/subject is satisfied with the shoot, then the artist will carry on with her work. If a second session is needed, which is rare, but sometimes happens, another time will be booked for photography.

Enlargements will be made from the slide(s) from which Linda will work. She will then draw the image on stretched canvas. From there, an underpainting in sepia will be done and then the slow process of building up the color will begin. When the painting is far enough along for Linda to feel confident to show, especially the face, the subject/client will be called in to have a look. From then on, the client is free to view the work from time-to-time or not, depending on their wishes. This way, all through the experience, the subject/client is sure not to be surprised by the direction in which the painting is taking.

It is assumed that Linda is being commissioned for her “vision”, but she will always paint in a respectful and tasteful way without sacrificing the integrity of the work. Before the painting is varnished, Linda will insist the subject/client views the work for final approval. In the event that this must be handled long distance, a photograph can be supplied.

The varnished painting will be delivered to the client/subject or a framer as best suits the circumstances. The artist will then be given the final payment.

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