This is a little story of a commissioned painting I did for Darryl Purposebut it’s also a story of meeting Darryl, his music and how it’s touched me.
When Darryl Purpose approached me to paint a commissioned painting to go on his upcoming new CD, I was thrilled! I immediately said yes!
I’ve known Darryl from way back when I was living on Queen Anne Hill in Seattle, Washington. That would be around 1996.
I first met Darryl when a friend of mine in New York City let me know that Darryl was playing a house concert on Queen Anne Hill. He encouraged me to go hear Darryl’s music live. The concert was within walking distance of my apartment. How could I say no?
So my best friend and I walked up to the concert.
When we got there, we didn’t know any one in the group of people congregating and we were wondering if it was actually okay that we were there. My friend had said, “Just tell Darryl, Steve sent you.” Sounded good to me.
The concert was in a lovely house that overlooked the city. There was a large picture window in the living room with a sweeping view of Seattle and the space needle against the sky. There were chairs set around for people to sit in. A lot of those were filled. We sat in the back.
When the concert began, Darryl stood in front of the big picture window with his guitar and played for the small crowd of music lovers.
We were mesmerized with Darryl’s music and his storytelling of black jack playing and being on the great Peace March. It was enchanting and the setting just right!
During a break in the concert, people were mingling, others getting something to drink. I headed for the restroom. When I came back to the group, I found my friend hugging Darryl with tears streaming down her face. She had been so touched by Darryl’s music and was telling him how much she loved it. It made me smile. His music brought her to tears! That’s how soulful and touching Darryl’s music is!
It’s a great memory of a beautiful evening of fabulous music and company!
His music inspired me to paint this piece titled “Blue is for River.” It’s a painting of Darryl (when he used to wear a cowboy hat during his performances) whipping up the sky with his music.
My painting title is taken from Darryl’s song titled “Paint the Sky.” Darryl graciously let me use his Paint the Sky song in my art showcase video on Youtube.
Purchase an archival print of Blue is for Riverhere.
Fast forward a few years and a few DP concerts later. I’ve seen Darryl play in Washington, New York City, and Oregon. I have all of his CDs! Can you tell I’m a fan yet?
I will always remember a road trip I took once with my late husband, Peter. I had introduced him to Darryl’s music when we lived in Portland, OR.
I think it was sometime in the summer of 2005. Peter was very thin from fighting colon cancer. He also had bought a new (used) car and wanted to take a road trip with it.
Peter’s brother, Larry, was visiting so we took that road trip. We had Darryl’s music in the CD player. Peter wanted to share Darryl’s music with Larry and there was one song Peter especially loved. It is titled, “The Island Song” from the Right Side of Zero CD.
I just remember cruising along with the sun roof open, a beautiful summer day, Larry stretched out in the back seat, Darryl’s music playing, Peter driving…we stopped to pick blackberries on the side of the road. All was well.
Sadly, Peter didn’t win the battle. He died from colon cancer that October.
Whenever I hear the Island Song, it brings me back to that day. I remember how Darryl’s music had lifted us up! How eager Peter was to share the music and the times we played Darryl’s music to make us feel good.
I’ve been sharing Darryl’s music since that first CD I bought in 1996. So you can see I felt honored to be asked to do a custom painting for the new CD.
So, I talked with Darryl about the commission.
What did he want it painted on…paper or wood? How big? What feeling did he want portrayed from it? Darryl sent me a few lyrics from some of the new songs on the CD. We exchanged thoughts about the painting and then I began.
It started out like this…
and then turned into this…
and then this…
and… so it went. Adding more layers and more layers.
Then at some point I noticed the earring. It’s funny how one can paint and not really notice the elements until much later.
Where did that come from? The earring had to go.
So I took it out and turned it into Buddha’s ear. I almost thought that “Buddha’s Ear” might make a nice title. It had a lyrical quality to it. 🙂
But the words “Still the Birds” kept repeating in my head. I almost didn’t want to title it that because it was the title being considered for the new CD. Yet, it seemed to fit perfect, so that was what I titled it.
There is a lot of symbolism in this painting. I don’t often like to talk about what a painting means to me as I like the viewer to make up their own story about my art. But I will tell you that the hand symbolizes the guitar player in Darryl and how a musician uses his hand to play an instrument. The raven looking up at the moon and the swallows flying above is about time and the passing of it.
You can read more about Darryl here and on his website.
If you’d like to purchase one of your own commissioned paintings, go here.
I love making these bike and raven art pieces! This one was a commissioned painting. It was requested to use primary colors and put their little doggie in the painting. I think it is a fun piece and it was really fun to create!
All my bicycle and raven paintings have a hidden word in the painting that is from the title of the piece. Sometimes the word is very obvious and this one’s word is “Ride.” You can see the word at the bottom of the painting. I use a stencil process to create the word.
Catchin’ A Ride, 12″ x 12″, acrylic on wood, sold
Detail of Catchin’ A Ride
Detail of Catchin’ A Ride
If you would like your own custom painting, shoot me an email to email@example.com
I wanted to share with you a recent commissioned painting and a little about the story behind it.
Rumi Flute is a performer, composer and recording artist in L.A. She specializes in jazz and other music on flute. She holds a Master of Music degree in Afro-Latin Music Performance from California State Los Angeles.
This would be Rumi’s first CD and she wanted to find an artist that she connected with who she could commission to do a colorful painting for her new CD cover.
Rumi found my work by doing an online search for “colorful art” and “tropical painting.” She found my colorful images from my website artbylindy.com and some from my Etsy Shop where I sell colorful, archival prints.
Rumi contacted me and told me about her idea for a commissioned painting that would be used on the cover of her new CD titled “Rumi & Zubumba Rumba.” I was thrilled to create a painting for her!
I also let her know that I was a graphic designer and I could do both her painting and her CD jacket design. We were both happy to collaborate on this exciting project.
First I created a proposal that fit within Rumi’s budget and when it was approved, the work was began.
This is one of my favorite types of projects where I can combine my graphic design skills with my painting.
In beginning a project such as this, it’s important to know the audience and the style and feel of the piece. We had a phone conversation and went over the project.
I asked Rumi to pick out some of her fav images from my Etsy Shop so I could get a feel for what she was attracted to. She sent me 4 images and described what she liked about them. This helped me get a feel for the style and content she was attracted to. I also asked her to give me some words to describe the feel of the painting and CD design she was looking for.
The words were colorful, natural, simple, tropical, world music, improvisation, rhythmic, fresh. I printed them out and had them near me as I painted.
Most of the time I like to send sketches to the person commissioning the painting so they can tell if I am on track with what they are looking for. But this time, I felt that wouldn’t be a good idea because I was painting from my intuition and I wasn’t sure yet how it would look. I asked Rumi to trust me with creating the painting without her seeing anything first. She was happy to do so and I think it really freed me up to let the painting evolve and create itself.
About 3/4’s of the way through the painting, I sent Rumi a proof of it. I knew the detail work wasn’t finished yet and I hoped she would be okay with the way it looked. She was and I continued on with putting the outlined flowers and more of the line work into the piece. It really began to shine with these accent pieces. And then it was finished! There is a bit of fear after completeing a commission because I don’t know if my client will like it as much as I do. Turns out Rumi was very happy with it and so was I!
Then it was on to creating the CD package design. This seemed to flow as well. I picked up colors from the photo Rumi supplied and put in some of my textures I create for my paintings and it began to have the fresh, tropical, world music feel I was looking for.
Rumi also was pleased with the art and design, saying “Lindy had many paintings already that would have worked wonderfully as album covers, but I was so thrilled to be able to commission her for an original piece. She was incredibly responsive and intuitive, giving me exactly what I was looking for and so much more. When she first showed it to me I loved the painting immediately! It was also great that she was able to design the complete CD jacket to work so beautifully with the artwork. I couldn’t be happier.”
This mailbox came back into my life recently and I am thrilled to start using it as our family mailbox for our Prescott home.
I painted this mailbox back in 2001 for the Creative Department where I worked. The project was to create a mailbox that could be used for the employee of the month. The special person would put it on their desk for a month while they were temporarily spotlighted. I was chosen, or maybe I volunteered, I can’t remember, to paint the mailbox.
This festive box had a flag that could go up or down so the person would know whether they had something fun left in it that they could pickup. How fun would that be? To arrive in the morning at your desk and find some goodie left in the mailbox. Delightful messages or fun presents and sweet treats. It was a wonderful idea and well received by my co-workers.
I worked there for a couple years and when I left, I thought I would never see the mailbox again. I remember feeling a bit sad about that.
People come and go in a business and there was no exception with this company where I worked. Things and processes change. Mailboxes get stored away.
But a few weeks ago, I reconnected with someone from my old workplace and to my surprise she mentioned she had the mailbox and asked if I wanted it back. I said yes!
Oh sunshine! Brightest day, send the mailbox my way!
Below the sunshine on the mailbox it says, “You Shine!” I love that.
I’ve had people ask if I paint custom mailboxes on commission. Unfortunately, I don’t but I do create paintings on commission. Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to arrange something.
Last week I finished a commissioned painting. It was to do a companion piece for a painting that had been purchased earlier in the year by a client. They had an idea of having a bear in the painting. The first painting is titled “The Wind Whispered Him Home”, the companion piece is titled “He Contemplates the Trees”. My clients were very happy with the way the painting turned out. So was I. They have a bear theme in their guest room and I will also be painting a chest as an addition to their room. I have fun with commission work….especially when I’m given free rein. I also have another panel that I might continue the scene onto just for fun. To see what else happens with the bear…maybe a river and fish jumping…we’ll see. When I finish it I’ll post it on this site. If you have an idea for a commissioned painting, send me an email and we can talk about it…Mail to: email@example.com