I was recently commissioned by Patrick Weller to create an oil portrait of his wife, Lisa, and son, as a surprise gift for her. The resource photo was taken on a special Italy vacation boat ride when their son was very young.
The resource photo had quite a few challenges such as strong backlighting, distracting elements, straight-on facial angles, sunglasses, and smiles with teeth, but we managed to overcome, and the result is very pleasing.
This experience was particularly meaningful for me, and very emotional at times, because Patrick & Lisa’s college age son was senselessly murdered less than a year ago, and I was honored to have the opportunity to assist in their grieving in a small way.
I haven’t had a chance yet to meet Patrick and his family in person, but I’ve grown to love them through this process. The thought of Lisa receiving my painting as a surprise brought tears to my eyes on several occasions.
When we first spoke, I asked Patrick about his son, and he freely reminisced. As a father, I know the depth of love a parent has for a child. As I listened I felt very close to him. Somehow I felt God’s love comforting Patrick like a warm blanket, and he expressed it to me on multiple occasions with encouraging words along the way.
The image shows the unframed painting on their dresser shortly after removing it from the shipping container.
Below are kind words that Patrick left in a google review after receiving the finished painting.
“Mark and Laurel are extremely genuine people. This quality and so many other positive qualities come out in the final piece. Mark’s attention to detail, embracing the purpose and passion for what he is doing produces a work that can be admired all hours of each day! We absolutely Love It and Appreciate ya. Thank you so very much! Pat, Lisa and Madison”
A text from Patrick a few months after receiving painting:
“Mark and Laurel, I hope this finds you well.
Just a quick note of sincere thanks for your work and friendship.
The painting has brought Lisa a joy greater than I anticipated. There’s a feeling our son is still by her side with the painting:). Something to be cherished.
Thankyou for all you do, stay safe and have a blessed Thanksgiving.”