I finished this commission last week, a commission that was all joy and satisfaction. I know many artists who won’t touch them; a commission promises frustration and disappointment and too much talk of money instead of talk of art. They don’t see anything fun in the process.
I have a little rule that spares me any of that. I get asked often – very often – if I’d put a real person’s real face into one of my paintings. And I say: no.
It’s not that I can’t, it’s that I won’t.
Plenty of people will paint realistic portraits. I paint stories. I paint moments of stories.
I paint the prospect of being okay with the world when the world seems to have other plans. I paint moments that are fun and funny and playful and ironic and mischievous. I paint the choice to be delighted. That’s not always easy to find the moment when that choice becomes true and it’s why I have to steep myself in story.
So. That’s my rule. I’m sticking to it.