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Commissioning A Painting


A vintage cream-colored baby dress on a peachy pink background with an image of a father holding his baby.

Above: The Baby's Dress, acrylic on 18 x 24 inch canvas.
From Laura Hunt's private collection

Here are the typical steps involved in starting a commissioned artwork and seeing it through to completion.

  1. 1. Schedule a conversation, virtually or in person. Be sure your request aligns with my current subjects and style, which can be seen on my website.

  2. 2. Share details about the painting's concept, its significance to you, preferred size, and potential color preferences. Mention any deadlines such as birthdays or anniversaries. If you have reference photos for me to work from, I need to see them at this point.

  3. 3. Following our discussion, I'll assess the feasibility of the commission. If it's a fit, I'll provide a pricing structure, with options based on size. Note that my commission prices are 25-30% higher than non-commissioned work. That’s because I must please you, not just myself, and there’s a stress factor involved, along with the additional complexity inherent to a commission.

  4. 4. If we proceed, a Letter of Agreement and a non-refundable 50% fee initiates the project, with the remaining amount due upon completion. I'll send an invoice, due on receipt, which you may pay online. Any missed payment may result in cancellation of the commission. For portraits, a photo shoot may be scheduled at this time.

  5. 5. Once reference photos are obtained, we'll select one for the painting. The creation process, ranging from three to six weeks, begins. I don't provide progress photos due to the awkward stages every painting goes through.

  6. 6. Upon completion (or near completion), you can either approve the artwork or request minor changes. After approval, I'll invoice the remainder of the fee plus sales tax (if you reside in Texas). In the unlikely event that you refuse the work, I retain the initial deposit but do not charge the final 50%, and I retain the artwork.

  7. 7. Framing involves an additional cost. You can either arrange framing independently or through me, though I can only provide frame images, not physical samples.
  8. 8. Celebrate the finished piece! Consider introducing it (and the artist) with an unveiling party among friends and family. Congratulations are in order.