Katie Lane and her husband Joe have literally been two of the most encouraging and responsive clients I have had yet! They were such a joy to work for. She and Joe have dreamed of having a mural in their home but were waiting for the "right artist" to come along :)
Katie's dream for the basement wall included a painting that would brighten the room and produce happy feelings for more frequent use of the space. They both were drawn to oak trees and definitely wanted a piece with a large tree. After fine-tuning through a few inspiration examples, we pieced together a composition and color scheme. Katie was so great during the entire process, always checking with a "Hey Christy" before coming down into the workspace and bringing things like water and sweet potato chips.
When the process was complete (or so we thought!) we realized that the finished product was a little more "storybookish" or even feminine than we really wanted. The image I had used to base the background on had pink cherry blossoms, and everything was a little more pastel than we really wanted. The interesting thing about being a commissioned artist is that you are collaborating with your client to create what they envision while also including your own artistic choices. It's even more interesting to have two clients, somewhat newlyweds working together AND with the artist. Katie, Joe and I learned this is actually easier said than done! It was a great learning experience for me. After talking to Joe and realizing that the mural wasn't as perfect for him as it was for her, and wanting it to be absolutely perfect for the whole family, Katie very respectfully contacted me and asked me if I would makes some revisions.. Normally when this kind of situation happens there is an opportunity to feel discouraged, but thanks to the people that Katie and Joe are, I felt completely respected as artist and free to work with them on specific revisions, especially because they were happy to pay me for the additional time. We decided to make the pink trees a cream/tan color, darken the bridge, darken some tree leaves, darken the sky in the corner and add some dark purple mountains in the distance. I went over the next day to knock out the list of changes and add a couple of deer :) (I learned at dinner that Joe likes to hunt so that was my little contribution to his identity in the mural.) The final product was such a joy to everyone! I feel so good knowing that it suits them both perfectly and serves them in the way it was intended to.
I am also happy to say they are my first commission in St. Joseph!! They will always hold a special place in my Simple Sparrow heart as amazing clients and friends.
I hope you enjoy viewing the changes!
The sweet Lanes after mural #1