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I commissioned the sun!

by Jean Van't Hul
November 26, 2010

Commission a painting from a child

Oh, look at this magnificent sun that Maia painted for me! I love it, love it, love it!

The painting is large—2 by 3 feet—and drawn with oil pastels and then painted with tempera on poster board.

It is also Maia’s first “commissioned” artwork, which may need a little explanation…

I’ve been rearranging our house a bit. In fact, as my friends will tell you, I’m always rearranging our house. And they’re probably tired of my joke about it being the cheap way to redecorate. I usually limit it to moving furniture around, sometimes draping some fabric somewhere, and hanging (or taping up) Maia’s latest artworks. This time, besides the obligatory rearranging of furniture, I’ve taken almost everything down from the walls and have been trying to decide what to put back up. I’ve also been framing some of Maia’s recent art (and Daphne’s first paintings and drawings!) to hang.

Sun Painting

I really wanted a big, happy yellow painting for our bedroom wall, though, and didn’t have anything that fit the bill.

While I don’t generally ask Maia to draw or paint anything specific, I wanted a sun painting by her. So I explained the concept of commissioning a piece of art. How someone might ask an artist for a painting to be made just for them and even sometimes specify what they want the painting to depict. I asked Maia if I could commission a painting from her—a sun—and she was so excited by the idea!

She spent so long working on it, mixing the colors just right, and wouldn’t let me near the studio until she was finished. And then she asked for more “commissions.”

I have to admit though that I left out the part about artists getting paid for their commissioned artwork. At first, I thought I would offer her a small payment, but then I worried about her wanting or expecting payment for all her art. So I didn’t. And she’s been so thrilled with just the idea of working on commission (with plenty of kisses, hugs, and praise). But who knows, maybe I’ll bring up the subject of payment for commissions. What do you think?

Update :: I had Maia’s sun painting transferred to canvas.

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