I've been making artwork in one form or another for over 25 years now.
Most of my regular income has come working as a painter for a very successful commercial art studio in the UK, my specialization being hand-crafted representational paintings such as portraits, realistic landscapes and figurative scenes.
As an individual artistic presence I've been somewhat hidden away in the shadows of that commercial world, but that arrangement has always worked for me up to now.
Why The Change?
The commercial work sadly started drying up a couple of years ago. While there have still been a few projects, the landscape of how art is sourced has clearly changed and there simply isn't enough work coming in anymore.
The whys and wherefores of these changes are a topic for another post, but suffice it to say that many of the factors that have been gradually changing the world with regard to technology and globalization probably bear some influence.
Many of the projects I've worked on commercially have been of monumental proportions, both in size and the number of artworks produced.
It seems somewhat ironic then that I might choose to focus on such a different scale of painting and art creation.
There are a number of reasons for this that have been bubbling away in the backwaters of my consciousness.
As I've slowly advanced into middle-age my inclination has been leaning more toward the intimate and personal world as a creative inspiration.
I've touched on this over the years by taking on a number of portrait commissions and 'fun' projects where the client has had such a personal investment as to be infectious.
One of those 'fun' projects a couple of years ago was commissioned by my Sister as a Christmas present for a friend at work. Her friend is an avid dolls-house collector and the one thing she was unable to find were authentically hand-crafted paintings in the styles she desired. One was a re-creation of a de Lempicka painting (see top of post), the other an abstract inspired by Ben Nicholson.
Of course these had to be painted on a tiny scale compared to anything I'd ever done before, even as a detail in another work.
But I found the challenge fun and inspiring, even if they did take what seemed like an extraordinarily long time to produce for their size (about 3- 4 hours per painting).
To my surprise there was no issue in terms of what I had to ask as remuneration, such was the desire to have them done authentically and to a reasonable degree of finish.
A Natural Progression
I was soon busy researching other forms of the genre, and as one of my passions has always been portraiture I naturally gravitated toward the miniaturists of the 16th -18th century in Europe.
I started painting family and friends to get a feel for where I wanted to take these little works. Finding fob-watches with their flip open cases offered a good alternative to traditional lockets and miniature frames.
It's still early days for my 'little' venture into miniature painting, but I've taken a number of commissions and have a growing a portfolio of portraits under my belt.
You can see all of my miniatures on the main page of this site.
Feel free to get in contact if you'd like to discuss or commission your own hand painted miniature.
Daniel Rose is a UK based artist specialising in portraiture and representational painting.