I will never forget my first real “commission”. I was 16 and fundraising money for a trip to Bulgaria. In exchange for support, a family friend commissioned me to draw a portrait for them. I was very excited and felt like a real artist for the first time. Ever since then making portraits has been a part of my artistic practice. I even once painted a portrait of the well-known Indian-born Canadian chef Vikram Vij (definitely one of my most nerve-racking projects!). If you doubt me, you can go to his restaurant, eat some of his delicious food and ask him about it My style has changed much since my first portrait as a teenager (hopefully improved too!), but I still get the same thrill of excitement when asked to do one. I find them challenging because the clients will always notice if I’ve not done my best work. Although I always make a disclaimer that this is my artistic interpretation and not a photograph, if they don’t see a resemblance in the drawing, they will most definitely complain. This challenges my artistic skills and holds me accountable.
This month I had the pleasure of illustrating four portraits for a couple who connected with me through my website. Each portrait portrays them in a different setting and without knowing them personally, I think it’s safe to say that they share a love of travel and nature. The final illustrations were drawn by hand with ink and then digitally coloured in photoshop.
Next month, I will be working on some more portraits and starting an exciting food packaging project. Thanks for reading again and happy October! P.S If you are interested in an illustrated portrait you can find more examples on my Etsy shop here.