Although commission work is not my primary focus these days, I completed several recently that were quite fun. "The Cellist" was one of them.
My client was a graceful woman who had recently retired from the symphony. On a late afternoon, she played her cello while I took photos. I was inspired by how beautiful the scene was--the music, the lighting, her swift movements and fingering, her complete immersion while she played.
She wasn't sure if she wanted a descriptive background or something more obscured, so I prepared several color studies with different color schemes and backgrounds. In the end, we decided on a warm, neutral color scheme and an abstract background that suggested movement and music.
Here are the color studies for her portrait:
The finished portrait,
The Cellist, 26 x 20", watercolor