Process: Wally & Bowie

Most of the time, the commissions I get asked to do are pretty straight forward…"I want a portrait of my cat." accompanied by 4-5 photos of said cat. But recently, I received a commission that started off as "Can you paint my two cats?" and soon after an email came with notes that included 6 key points and reference photos. It was more than just a basic portrait. I initially thought "This is nuts!" but I was up for the challenge. 

In those cases, where the client already has a vision in their mind, I will usually send them a sketch before I start painting.


Lately, I've also been sending a digital color mockup. Since I'm going to be painting the final, I don't want any surprises. This way they client can also approve the color choices even though they are an approximation of what the final will look like in paint. My worst nightmare would be if I chose a certain color for the background only to have the client come back and say they hate it.


I’ve been painting with Holbein Acryla Gouache for almost 4 years now that I’m pretty familiar with all the colors in their range and the colors that I can mix with them. Although the digital color mockup is never going to be exactly the same as the final, I can get the colors pretty close.

Here’s the final piece, Holbein Acryla Gouache on 100% cotton cold press watercolor paper