Saturday, October 29, 2011

Painting vs. Pain: Getting beyond the less than ideal

Portrait #60
©2011 Toni Ruppert
20 x 24″
Oil Painting (on Canvas)

Today and in the next post, I show you the “secrets” to how my painting can help get beyond a less than ideal situation.  My painting also goes through a less than pretty stage and I will share this too.  

Knowing the story behind each piece and having rituals (things I do all of the time) are just a few “secrets” to getting beyond this. 

What's this painting’s story?

My friend Diana’s Mom was having major surgery this summer.  To encourage her Mom, I thought I’d go visit.  I've always admired her funny and caring way.  In the back of my mind, I thought maybe one day I would get the opportunity to paint her.   

Yes.  I see people and think “Wow wouldn’t it be nice to paint that spirit or that personality or that hair.  

Anyway, at some point, I do visit again, taking my camera this time.  I took pictures on the spot.

These photograph I took told a different story than the one I wanted to paint.  The one we eventually used was a photograph from over 10 years ago.  It told a different story of a more happier time - before illness.  I knew I had to capture that happier time for Diana’s Mom and Dad. 

With any client, I try and and stay cognizant of their story.  Diana's Mom had always wanted a portrait she said.  Now seemed like the perfect time.

When Diana eventually saw the painting --about halfway through, she said, “He is so absolutely perfect. I cried...”  I was so elated to hear this because this portrait did not start off "pretty."  In fact, this is where it started: 

Portrait #60 -in progress
©2011 Toni Ruppert
20 x 24″
Oil Painting (on Canvas)

What should you do next? 
Think about someone you care about today.  Is there some difficulty or painful situation where a portrait would help?  Is there some stressful situation where my art could help?  

Feel free to comment or e-mail me at toni [at]