Normally, I hate doing art FOR other people. Like, a lot. In fact, I usually despise it so much that it makes me pretty much give up my hobby (ie, photography, because so many people were asking me to do it FOR THEM.). Which sounds horrid, I know. 

This time, it was different. My friend Amanda and I talk on FB pretty much ALL day. Anyway, the other day we were talking about our heritage, and lucky for us, we both have some Norwegian. This lead to Amanda talking about how she didn't feel like her blog was really reflecting HER as a person, I had to agree. And then ideas started coming to me. So I wanted to surprise her with a new, handmade, Norwegian Heritage influenced, and something that I had hoped was more HER. 

Amanda is really into nature, earthy things, and beliefs. We talk about the same stuff all the time, but we always have MORE to talk about, on the same subjects. So I wanted to create something organic, that was girly, yet not too girly for the tom boy that I know she is. 

Here is my process. First thing I did was go to Pinterest. Yes, I Pinterest everything, research purposes, you know. I created a private board called "Ideas for Amanda" (PS. Private boards are awesome). Then I started searching for "Norwegian Folk Art" and "Scandinavian Folk Art". I came across Rosemaling. It's a very cool Norwegian type of Folk art that is done by hand, with a paint brush. From my research it is done by double loading a single paintbrush and really creating some organic strokes and feelings. There are lots of flowers in Rosemaling, and wispy shapes. I fell in love with it. 

So I started doodling, asking Amanda all the time what she thought of the work I was doing. She never wavered, saying she loved it at every step. She's so cool. 

Idea progression. We talked about Norwegian Heritage stuff, and chickens, cause she's getting chickens this weekend. haha. It's gonna be super cool!

Sometimes when I am sketching something out, I like to do a little inking. Just to break up the constant sketch sketch sketching.

Beginning of the inking process. I'm using Copic Multiliners 0.7 on the big parts. I used 0.5 on LIFE, and 0.2 on SINCE YOU. 

Almost done inking here. When I was finished inking, I erased the whooooole 9x12inch page, to make sure I didn't have any stray pencil smudging. I am pretty sure I am going to go through my eraser pen thingie really quickly! 

I wanted to be sure she was liking everything so I took a ton of pictures. I could practically hear here squealing through FB chat. haha. I used Copic Multiliner 0.3 for the leaf parts. 

One of the hardest parts for me is picking out colors and actually getting my watercolor down onto my inked drawing. I am always so nervous that I wont like what I picked, and feel like the whole process will have to be redone. I hate making decisions!

Yes yes, I realize this is upside-down, but when I am working I turn the paper every which way! Do you do the same? 

It's finally finished! Well, the painting part anyway! Of course, I took a photo and sent it off to Amanda for approval. I was really nervous that this wouldn't look good on any sort of smaller scale, so I was willing to give it another shot, just in case. But I loved how this came out. 

Then I had to do the process I talked about yesterday, with creating your own handmade elements for your blog. So I took a photo and cleaned it up in Photoshop Elements. Here's the final outcome which is showcased on Amanda's blog, Life Since You

I feel like this process was a really good one. And for once, I had a great time creating something FOR someone else. It is really a lot easier when they're your friends and you know them really well already. 

Do you do commissioned work? Do you find it stressful? How do you deal with it?

*No, I didn't get paid to create this, and no, I do not currently accept commissioned work requests. 

Linking up to:
Paint Party Friday


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