I had an interview with Ron and Woofie last week, the interview being the first step for me in creating a custom painting. Ron is the founder of Black Rapid company which produces camera accessories, including the now famous R-strap, "the original camera sling". He designed the R-strap to make handling a camera easier and faster for the user. It is now considered to be an essential tool for many professional photographers, and non-pros as well. Ron loves dogs, and supports a number of dog rescue organizations. Woofie is his companion and consultant, who communicates to him valuable dog-sense business advice, opinions about who to hire, and whether a song Ron is composing has potential. (Ron is also a musician and composer). We were laughing at the Woofie stories, but Woofie has been right enough times that his suggestions are taken seriously!
The subject for the painting will be both Ron and Woofie, a double portrait. I will start the painting and rough-in the composition then have Ron come for a sitting. I can paint dogs from referring to a collection of photos, but for a human, an in-person sitting is almost always necessary. Painting a human from a photo looks like a photo, but painting from life somehow actually injects life into the portrait.
These are the photos of the interview- many thanks to photographer Anita Nowacka. An interview usually lasts about an hour, during which I sketch the subjects, take some photos, and interview both to learn more about what they would like for the painting.