Thursday, June 30, 2011

9' x 12' Commission--Biggest of my Career!

You can imagine my delight when Canadian clients asked if I could paint them a large 9' x 12' painting for their home in Alberta.  They knew this was big--even for me, and wondered if it was even possible.  They weren't interested in splitting up the canvas into two or three panels...but rather envisioned one big, dramatic eye stopper that you would see the moment you entered the house. They had a two-story wall that needed some artwork...and both husband and wife had finally agreed that one of my paintings would be perfect for the space.  I flew out to Canada to visit their home, view "The Wall" and tour their surrounding area for painting inspiration.  The moment I saw "Lake Louise" and the gorgeous Canadian Rockies...I knew exactly what I wanted to paint for them. 
My husband and I spent a couple of days touring the gorgeous landscape of Alberta, but it was Lake Louise that caught my attention.  The pale aqua color of the water was mind boggling.  So beautiful!  And the Rockies!  I have yet to see a more dramatic mountain range.  It completely took my breath away!
Lake Louise with wildflowers.  This is actually the scene that inspired the painting! 
Surrounding Lake Louise are forests of Aspens.  My specialty!  The painting had to have Aspens in it.  This was becoming my perfect commission!  The pieces were falling together.

Back at their home, I presented my idea.  The painting would be Lake Louise with the Rockies in the background.  Colorful wild flowers would be in the foreground, flanked on either side by Aspen trees. I could already see the finished piece in my mind's eye and knew it would be perfect for their home.  I just hoped they could see it too and give me the okay.  To my delight, they were completely thrilled with the idea.  The husband's only request was to have a path somewhere in the painting.  He wanted the painting to have a sense of "depth"--like you're looking through a window.  The wife was thinking about the colors.  She wanted the painting to contain hints of coral and red, to match the accent colors of her house--but nothing too garish or overwhelming.  She felt if the painting was over colorful...they would tire of it easily.  Since this was to be the major focal point of the home, they wanted it to be a scene they could enjoy forever.  Not a problem, I told them.  They were singing my tune.  I knew I was the perfect artist for the job.  I just couldn't wait to get back to the studio and start their painting!  Now to figure out the logistics of how to exactly paint it!  This will be a lot of fun...

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Friday, June 10, 2011

Gallery 1870, Yountville CA

Just dropped off a couple of new pieces at my Gallery in Yountville, CA. They already have my "Standing Tall V" (72" x 24") hanging up in the front entry! Looks fabulous in that spot. This was the email just sent from Paul Thoren, the Gallery owner: 
Thank you Matt and Jen for the wonderful art.
Already a good response!
 --Paul Thoren
If you haven't yet been to Gallery 1870 you're missing out!  It's one of the best Galleries in the Napa Valley. Here is their information:

Gallery 1870
Located in VMarketplace 1870 (formerly Vintage 1870)
6525 Washington Street
Yountville, CA 94599
(707) 944-9670
(800) 322-1870

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Playing with Grapes

Two of my top art collectors own Ardiri Vineyard and Winery. Every year, on Memorial Day Weekend, they invite me to participate in their fun wine event. I always bring my freshest vineyard pieces out to the show and then paint one or two more while I'm there. Ardiri couldn't be more beautifully situated atop a hill, overlooking a valley of patchwork farmlands with Mt. Hood in the distance. Lots of painting inspiration! Ardiri always put on a fabulous event. Though I myself am a non-drinker...everyone who comes through raves about how fantastic their wines are. My collectors also own a vineyard in Napa Valley, so they do a California/ Oregon blend that is very unique. You can visit Ardiri all year long. Here's their address:

35040 Southwest Unger Road
Cornelius, OR 97113
(503) 628-6060

These are the paintings I brought with me to the show.  Two were chosen for next year's wine labels.
I waited until after John and Gail had chosen their pieces before titling the paintings.  I like them to pick the names--especially since these paintings will be appearing on their 2011 wine labels.
"Chahelem Gold 2011"
24 x 36

Art Collectors and owners of Ardiri Vineyards and Winery, Gail Lizak and John Compagno added "Chehelem Gold 2011" to their collection.  This painting will be featured on the 2011 Chahelem Gold 2011 label.
"Due Stati 2011"
48 x 48

Gail and John chose my Due Stati 2011 for their 2011 red wine label.
 "Walking through Wine Country"
48 x 12

 "Fields of Gold"
30 x 48
 "Sun-Ripened Grapes"
36 x 18

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