Commissions and Price Guide

At the bottom of this post is a brief description of the process of a commissioned painting, to give you an idea of some of what is included in arriving at a final price - before the costs of the materials and tools are taken into account (painting surface eg. canvas / paper / board, paints, mediums eg. linseed oil and artists' turpentine, brushes and palette knives, cleaning papers and mediums, etc).


Below is my price list for commissioned paintings, unframed.

Shipping (Domestic and International) is for the account of the client.

Prices are set by square inch (Height x Width) and not by linear inch (Height + Width)

Oil Paintings

€2.75 per square inch

Where relevant, the deep edges of canvas will be painted but not measured or included in the price calculation. In other words, no cost for the deep edge area of a canvas.

Acrylic Paintings (abstract only)

€2.50 per square inch

Where relevant, the deep edges of canvas will be painted but not measured or included in the price calculation. In other words, no cost for the deep edge area of a canvas.

Watercolour Paintings

€2.25 per square inch


Commissions Completed:
South Africa : Mr D Bose (3 paintings)
South Africa : Mrs B de Villiers (2 paintings)
United Kingdom : Mr A Firth (1 painting)
South Africa : Mr Victor Ferraz (1 charcoal sketch)
Ireland : Joanna Hannick (1 oil painting)
Malaysia : Gobie Raju (1 oil painting)
UK : Meghan Scott (1 oil painting; 1 oil triptyche)
Ireland : Ms Clare Mullins (1 oil painting)
USA : Mr R Bolan (3 oil abstracts)
France : Mr and Mrs C and J Jones (1 formal oil portrait)
France : Mr and Mrs L and K O'Neill (1 Marc Chagall style oil painting)
Australia : Mrs Anne Cookson (1 Red Poppy representing Poppy Day oil painting)
Australia : Ms Wendy Morley (1 abstract watercolour landscape)
Canada : Mr George and Mrs Tana Matheson (1 oil painting, 1 charcoal, 1 watercolour)
Australia : Mr Martin Luithing (1 oil painting 1 metre square)
Northern Ireland : Mr and Mrs J & J Connor (1 oil painting)
Brittany, France : Mr and Mrs A Maine (2 paintings)
USA : Ms C Goldhagen (1 painting)

Known Collections of Work up to 2013:
Mr L Murrin, Dawn Foods, Naas, Dublin, Ireland
Mr A Boyd, Arizona, USA
Ms S J Lynch, Galway, Ireland
Mrs Nancy McAllister, Guntersville, Alabama, USA
Mr N McLoughlin, Ross Communications, Dublin, Ireland
Offices of the 'Now' Magazine Group - Galway, Limerick and Cork, Ireland
Ms Meghan Scott, Gr. Manchester, UK
Radisson Blu Hotel, Galway, Ireland


A brief description of the painting process

Not all artists work the same.
This is how I tend to work.
Every single painting is different and has different needs.
A formal portrait can take the best part of a year to complete.
Most paintings most certainly take more than a day and usually a few days at minimum - large, complex compositions will take months and occasionally more than a year.

Some considerations before any work begins :
Which is the correct size and type of surface to use?

What are the considerations of medium to use?
Where is the subject to be placed on the painting surface?
How is the subject to be arranged?
What type of background should be considered? 
Is the subject to be painted from life?
If from life, how many hours are needed for the artist to work with the subject?
Where is this to take place?
What are the lighting and set-up considerations and needs? 
Is the subject to be painted from a photograph? 
Does the artist have a good enough photograph?
Does the photograph reflect colour correctly?
Is the photograph in too much shadow or in too much light?
Is the subject posed for a strong composition?
Is the subject to be painted from imagination and/or memory? 
What allowances for final expectations need to be clarified? (Imperative to make sure both client and artist are working towards the same outcome!)
Which is the colour range the artist needs to work from?
More warm or more cool?
How much time does the artist have to complete the painting?

An interview with the person requesting the commission to find out as many details as possible and to sign commission document to confirm size, price, style and expectations.

Time Expectations:
Time considering the needs of the painting to be created; time to research things like correct colours, details of insignia or other items to be included, etc.
Sketching the subject onto tracing or baking sheet paper which is the same size as the painting surface. This process is time-consuming in order to get it correct.
Checking that the composition fits easily into the space and is strong; allowing for the eye to move around the painting but still be kept within the painting; and to have busy space and quiet space.
Allow time for reflection and to make sure that it is the eyes working and not the brain, in looking for errors in judgment and placement. Go away and come back some time later to make sure it is correct. There is a lot of this!
Using the sketch as a guide, transfer the composition onto the painting surface.
Check again to make sure all is well before paint is applied.
If necessary, check with the Client to make sure they are happy at this first stage.
Begin to mix the first colours. The base colours. Mixing colours is a process which takes hours rather than minutes, to achieve the required end result. There may be a fair amount of wasted paint at this stage!
If it is a portrait at least three skin tones need to be mixed and tested. Then mix and test all the other colours to be used.
Apply the first coats of paint, deciding whether the next coats can be applied wet on wet or whether the painting needs to sit for a day or more in order to paint wet on dry.

This is the most time-consuming stage, mixing and applying coats of paint, sometimes waiting for it to dry, sometimes not, until completed. This can take from hours to days to weeks to months, depending on the size and complexity of the painting and sometimes the tools used. It's impossible to put down here in words how this part of the process proceeds or the time it takes. It's reflective time, skill, experience, intuitive acknowledgement and creative energy at work.

Finally, the okay from the Client that they like what you have produced! Nightmares over!