Last year I had 4 portraits that were booked as Christmas Commissions as well as 3 that weren't but that needed to be delivered before Christmas to avoid the postal build up and last year was pretty hectic. All bar one (the Chow Chow dog) were small portraits but this year however I had 3 larger portraits booked in which allowed a much steadier pace. One was not booked as a Christmas Commission and so delayed until the New Year to avoid getting damaged in the overseas post to the USA, and so here are the 2 completed Commissions that I hope were received well by their recipients this Christmas day.
Click on either image to see the progress page.
I hope everyone enjoyed their Christmas day and received some thoughtful gifts too.
Wishing you the very best for the New Year 2019!
Christmas orders began coming in by September last year (2017) and I had little time to spend on anything else. I worked around 10 - 12 hours a day from mid October onwards and had to create a finely tuned schedule list for each day to ensure every portrait was completed for a specific date because there were a few overseas orders, some framed too and I had to ensure frames were received in plenty of time knowing framers tend to be extremely busy in the run up to Christmas too. I was hoping to have finished all my orders a week before I was due to travel to my old home town of Chesterfield so I could relax a bit but I was literally working late into the night before my journey the next morning!
Luckily everything worked out well in the end and my final portrait Star the Chow Chow, was literally collected by the Commissionee at the train station when I arrived in Chesterfield, he had travelled the 6 hours with me on bus, coach and then train in my suitcase! I received a lovely bunch of flowers from the lady for his painting and was pleased to see some lovely comments from recipients throughout Christmas day upon seeing the portrait of their much loved Pets. Click on any of the images to visit the progress pages.
Now all the Christmas Commissions are all complete and I've had a couple of weeks off to recharge, I am back in the studio working on new articles and 2018 Art Workshops for my Step by Step Art website, there's always so much to do behind the scenes. If you are looking to book your own bespoke Commission with me or are an Artist interested in articles, mini tutorials and possibly taking in a 1 Day Art Workshop with me, click on either of the links below to visit the page/website.
Here's hoping 2018 is a wonderful year for you!
The latest Articles available for free to All Artists
For those of you who do not know, I also have a dedicated website for my Art Workshops & tutoring which include many articles available for Artists of all calibre found at www.stepbystepart.co.uk. I have recently created 4 new articles that can be viewed by clicking any of the 4 images below. These articles may be of interest to Coloured pencil Artists in particular, 1 may also be of interest to Graphite Artists or Watercolorists too. If you like working with a tonal paper, Ursus paper may be something that interests you, find out how tonal paper can help your work. Heard of the Derwent Coloursoft pencils but want to find out more about them, click on the image below to visit the article and if you have some Coloursoft pencils at home you can try out the Tonal Layering exercise with them although you can try out this tutorial regardless of which Coloured pencils you own, it is ideal for those just starting out with pencils. If you are looking for a smooth white paper for your Coloured or Graphite pencil Art, take a look at the Hot pressed Watercolor papers page - there is lots of information on various papers that may be more suited to your preferences.
New Articles coming soon to Step by Step Art
As I missed the Winter Newsletter in December due to Commission work, I am putting together 4 new articles that will be sent out at the beginning of May. These include a couple of articles on soft Pastels; About Unison Pastels and a Step by Step tutorial showing how to create a tonal sky suited to Pastel newbies. There are also 2 'Starting out with..' articles, the first 'Starting out with Oils' has been written by Welsh Artist Chris Chalk on the 3 most important things you need to start your new journey with Oils. The second is 'starting out with Coloured pencils' written by myself especially for those looking to begin with the pencils. Why not sign up to our Newsletter and receive the latest information about these articles as soon as they become available. Find out more about SUBSCRIBING to the Step by Step Art Newsletter.
Please Note: These 4 articles are not yet available to view but will be linked up once they are.
1 Day Art Workshops in Chesterfield, Derbyshire
My 1 Day Workshops will be starting in May and I currently have 4 Workshops with spaces still available to book for anyone interested in coming along. If you are looking to learn how to create detailed Art in Coloured Pencils, Graphite pencils or acrylic paints, my Workshops are designed around regular Demonstrations and 1 to 1 help where needed and you also receive a booklet with Step by Step instructions and images which will help you through the day to ensure you know where to start your portrait and what colours/grades to use for best effect. Workshops are kept to small numbers (upto 10) to ensure everyone gets the help and support needed throughout the day. Prices start from £42.00 per person and Art Kits can be loaned or purchased with prices starting form just £5.00 Extra.
Click on any of the images above to visit the page of interest or find out more about my 1 Day Workshops by clicking the link below.
If you know someone who may find this article of interest, feel free to share via Twitter or click the facebook 'Like' button below. Get in touch if you have any questions on any parts of this post or leave a comment below, I'll get back to you as soon as possible,
Karen M Berisford
This year I was extremely busy with Christmas Commissions - I had 5 to complete in the space of 6 weeks, normally a portrait can take 3 - 5 weeks each so it was a very busy time. All were completed and delivered out to the Commissionees and here are the portraits alongside information on each and the customer testimonials.
"I'm sitting looking at Buddy in pride of place on the wall, photo attached! It is absolutely lovely and it had the desired effect on Steve when he unwrapped - there were tears!! Everyone that has seen it has said how amazing it is with the amount of fine detail and so Buddy. If I manage to get a decent photo of Buddy next to it I will send it on! Thank you once again, it is lovely to have a painting of Buddy forever."
"Just wanted to let you know that mum loves her portrait and we all cried our eyes out when we first saw it. What you've done is so special and we couldn't have asked for a better painting to remember him by. It captures his brilliant personality so well. I'll definitely be recommending you to my spaniel loving friends!
"Hi Karen, I just wanted you to know that I absolutely love my painting of Kita. Thank you so much, you have done the most amazing portrait of him. He was my best friend and my little boy and the painting has been hung in the living room so we can all admire him everyday! Thank you again xx"
"Hi Karen , Hope you had a lovely Christmas. Wanted to drop you a note to say that Max absolutely loved the portrait! She couldn't believe how well you'd captured the detail from the photo and was thrilled to pieces! We've already recommended you to friends and family and am sure we'll use your amazing skills again in the the future. Have a great New Year!! Diarmid"
"Thank you so much for my beautiful portrait, you've really excelled yourself this time, its amazing!"
After 10 days away from the Art Studio visiting family in my old home town of Chesterfield as well as fitting in a well needed holiday down South in Dover I am now back and catching up on work. Before I went away, I finalised the 5 new Articles that have been created within the webpages of my official Art tutoring website 'Step by Step Art'. Here's what you can find within it's pages - take a look at our ARTICLES page to find even more!
There are more new articles being created, information of which will be included in our Winter Newsletter - Sign up today if you wish to receive the latest information direct to your E-mail*
*Newsletters are sent out every quarter or whenever Art Workshops are available to view, subscribers will NEVER receive SPAM mail and your E-mail address will only be used through the Step by Step Art website and NEVER sold on to third parties.
Murphie - Large Traditional Heart Memorial portrait
Murphie sadly passed away in December 2015 aged 20 years of age and her Mum was looking for something special as a memorial to Murphie and came across my Traditional Hearts portraits and got in touch. It is always a real challenge when it comes to black & white animals as you tend to find that a lot of definition is lost in photos as it is very difficult to strike a balance of these colours whilst still retaining detail however, through various layering of
paint colours including grey and brown tones added to the black fur and with greys added to the white fur I was able to create an equal balance of colour and detail to ensure perspectives were kept in check and the final portrait was as close a likeness to Murphie's photo as possible. Feedback from Murphie's Mum upon receipt told me that I had done a good job!
Bailey - 10" x 12" Coloured pencil pet portrait
Bailey is the second portrait completed in Coloured pencils for his Mum after heartbreakingly losing both Bailey and Casey (the first portrait) in close succession of each other and was gifted both portraits by a good friend. Bailey was originally sat on a green stripey rug but I thought it would suit the portraits if they were both sat on the same wooden
flooring so that they would compliment each other once framed and hung next to each other.
" Bailey just arrived! Well, about 15 minutes of tape removal ago. We are so chuffed! Bailey was loved by all of us, but loves my husband best, he was over the moon! We are blessed by your talent!
Obe - 11" x 14" Boxer Dog Acrylic painting
I was asked to create an Acrylic painting of Obie the Boxer dog as a surprise gift to a lady in the USA. The reference photo was a beautiful pose and of great quality and I was able to gather lots of detail from the reference image to create this special memorial painting of Obe.
All my Acrylic paintings are created using a mixture of professional paint colours and mediums which offer texture to the painting. The background texture was created using a palette knife and texture was limited on Obie himself except for a light layering of fur texture. Nearly 40 Facebook friends clubbed together to book this surprise portrait of Obe and it was lovely to hear how happy the recipient was upon receiving such a thoughtful gift from great friends!
Thinking of booking your own Commission?
You can take a look at my COLOURED PENCIL ART GALLERY to see more Pet portraits created in Coloured pencils and if you wish to find out more about booking a Commission with me, you can find out more HERE. You can also fill in the BOOKING form to request a no-obligation quote or place your booking. Should you need help at any time, feel free to get in touch: firstname.lastname@example.org or call me on: 07854 677416
Thinking of booking your own bespoke Commission?
Coloured pencil portraits are created on acid free, archival paper using lightfast quality pencils and if framed correctly, a pencil portrait can last a lifetime and beyond! (if protected & cared for correctly) Coloured pencil pet portraits start from just £150.00 and you can find more details on my COMMISSIONS page or fill in the form to request a no-obligation QUOTE.
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Thanks for visiting! Karen
Throughout the year I run 1 day Art Workshops in my old home town of Chesterfield, Derbyshire (UK) and here is the latest news on my up and coming Coloured pencil Workshop which will be run on Saturday the 28th of May starting at 10am until 3:30pm. I work using a layering process for all my Coloured pencil Art to create high detail and realism and it is this technique that I tutor at my Workshops. Each Workshop includes a personal worksheet coupled with regular Step by Step demonstrations and 1 to 1 help for anyone who needs it so you are never left to struggle. Each Workshop attendee is provided with a colour chart if you wish to work with your own products or you can loan a Kit for the day for an extra £5.00 or buy your own home kit for an extra £10.00.
Using the Workshop Coloured pencils of choice, I trialled out this Red Squirrel subject to show you how my technique helps to create fine and realistic detail. This subject was chosen to allow me to tutor how to create realistic fur and how to create tonal backgrounds.
There are only 10 places available for this Workshop and this will be the only Art Workshop I will be tutoring this year due to other work commitments and holidays, so if you wish to attend please get in touch or you book via the Step by Step Art website using the link below:
Please get in touch if you have any questions regarding this Workshop or you can 'like' this post using the Facebook icon below to share with friends, 'Tweet' on your Twitter page or leave me a comment below. Please feel free to share with anyone who you think may be interested in attending this Workshop too!
A website offering help, advice and tutorials for Artists of all levels - For Free!
Are you new to Art and looking for advice on what products to buy or maybe you are a long standing Artist looking to swap brands and looking for product comparisons? My official Step by Step Art website offers Articles on varied products and recommendations and pages are being added on a regular basis. Click on any of the images in this post to visit the Article of interest to you, this will open a new tab which directs you to the Step by Step Art website.
There are also plans to offer written Step by Step tutorials as well as mini Video Tutorials for all Artists in the UK and beyond. Articles can also be requested if you are looking for something specific and mediums covered will include Coloured pencils, Graphite pencils, Acrylics and Soft Pastels as well as other mediums that may be offered by other contributors allowing this website to cater to a wide range of Artists.
This website also offers the chance to book an upcoming 1 Day Coloured pencil Workshop in May with myself once the subject matter has been chosen and further details will be added to the website once available.
You can also choose to SUBSCRIBE to my Newsletter if you wish to stay updated with the latest Articles, product reviews and recommendations, tutorials, workshops and any other Art related information that may be of interest.
You can 'like' or 'tweet' this article below if you wish to share this post with anyone it may be of interest to or leave me a comment below if you have any questions or thoughts regarding this post.
Hopefully there will be lots of information you find helpful.
Karen M Berisford