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edited November 2017 in Off-Topic Discussion
I think only other artists can relate.  I sent my mother a painting of my nieces - after much ado, many re-works (I don't do people and certainly can't make a crappy photo beautiful) but I tried my damnedest and with the help of many esteemed people here, I was actually pleased enough to ship it to my lovely, kind, sweet, genteel mother in South Carolina.  She phoned me this evening - she said she took the painting to a local print shop because she wanted to surprise family members on Thanksgiving day with prints.  I said "that is lovely and so sweet"

The painting is 12x12

Me:  "what size prints are you getting?"    .....  

My Mother:    "8x10"

Me:    "Mom, the painting is 12x12 - the print size needs to be square"

My Mother:    "well, I just think 8x10 is a great size and any one of them can put it on their desk, or office and it will be easy to frame"

Me:    "But what are they cutting off?"

My Mother:    "Nothing, it's just smaller!"

Me:      "mother...they have to cut something off - I spent a lot of time working out measurements for where the girls would be and if they cut off a side or bottom or top, it messes up the whole composition"

My Mother:      "well, the man at the print shop said that he would make sure the prints looked good - the girls are adorable in it - it will be fine!   Everyone will be so surprised Thursday......."

This is the work that went into all those measurements:  

She went all out and ordered 25 prints because she thought some cousins and other aunts on other sides and grandparents would want copies.......uggghhhhhhhh
It's so "funny" because she really does think it is no big deal - i'm thinking of the hours that I spent trying to work out a composition and some stranger at a print shop is going to just chop off what he deems appropriate.

I just need to let it go.  ................thank you for indulging me.....    


  • I know how that feels.  How?  Because it happened to me today also.  I took a batch of potential painting images into <local print shop> to be printed and laminated.

    I got home before I realized they had not only cropped but punched up the color for me.  I went back and got a reprints of all 8.

    It's easy to see what they did, they cropped off the sides until the result was the 11 x 17 ratio.  The color shift though is inexcusable.

  • They need an OMG button here!  @PaulB ; -  that is horrible!!!   now, i'll be having nightmares about the man at the local print shop doing that to my painting - oh my goodness gracious.  He'll probably crank down my beautiful and warm yellows that I wanted because it is a beautiful color and the girl's skin is 1000 colors - I can see someone wanting to just paintbrush those colors smooth - hell, he may even add some eyes and lips because I just have smears.......    lol...........It was bad enough with the cropping - I didn't even think of the photo shop editing.  I don't even know if I want to know....    good grief.  How weird is that that you had the same experience today!!!  
  • @PaulB, what the heck is that guy doing, looks very suspicious lol.
  • @Boudicca    I want to sit next to that man in @PaulB s photo at my next party!!!  Doesn't he look like a hoot!

    P.S.  Can you please just give me a little, teeny, tiny bit of your computer skills?????   How did you do that with the poster!!!  That is hilarious!   Believe me, I'll be seeing nightmarish copies of my painting for decades to come (if I am lucky to live long enough).  But truly.  It is the mentality of "tomorrow is another day"   Scarlett O'Hara in Gone With The Wind had a point.  I just really have to let. it. go.   My mother did not understand   - you, of all people, know what we started with with composition!!!!   omg     I just...... can't

    I have no idea what my sweet mother will be passing out on Thursday.... truly. I'm getting embarrassed already.
  • @Julianna there is an app called meme maker that enable you to make different memes.

    There are so many comments I could make about sitting next to the man, however I shall keep it clean and preserve the dignity of the forum.......
  • Oh dear. Not much you can do about that except smile and be gracious.Do post the the crop the shop comes up with if you can - it will be interesting to see what they do. 
  • edited November 2017
    I struggled over things like this, until I came to understand that even though I may not necessarily agree how others treat my finished work, fact is they love my work in their own loving way, which deserves respect. And had to learn to continue to like and love and appreciate myself regardless, in letting it all go and have it all be OK (not always easy for some us). In business matters, I had to be specific in what I want and in what I don't want in a service, get specifics before any alterations made to my artwork and/or photos, you can grant and deny by permissions exchanged and ask questions/make requests before any unwanted alterations take place. In business, it's a case of buyer beware. Some of the nightmares some of us suffer in a lifetime, man if only....
  • Boudicca said:
    @PaulB, what the heck is that guy doing, looks very suspicious lol.
    Just laughing the way he always did.
  • @Forgiveness yes, well, the older I get, the more impatient I am - there are several times in any given day that I say to myself "If only I could rule the world"  :)  The power is in just letting go but in that, I find that I just have to not care anymore and that is the rub - I care passionately and I don't like it when I get complacent or just give up.  It is out of my control, I have to let it go - but it irritates me because I care.  If only I could rule the world   :)    

    @Kingston that is really interesting.  If you have the time (this is in the off topic section so assume it is okay with flatty), may I indulge your expertise?  A few months ago I inquired about this poor photo that my mother really wanted me to paint - it touches my heart because I love these girls and my sister did capture a sweet moment of my nieces at Disney World last year.  She snapped this with her cell phone

    this is how it evolved into my painting
    Because I have a roll of linen the size of Texas and enough oil paint to probably paint a house and enough time on my hands to solve the world's problems, I figured I'd give it a go.  Knowing that a poor reference photo is the kiss of death - I could either try to paint from my imagination or try to make something of this.  Many people on the forum helped ( I don't know how to do photoshop) - especially @Boudicca helped with various ideas.  Now, I took it and ran with it.  I had the girls going straight into some bushes at the first pass - then, they were headed to what looked like the Promised Land so in the end - I just didn't want to draw attention back there.

    As you can see from the original photo - there were many cropping options - I chose to flip the girls because I like my focal point to be right of center if I can help it ( i'm sure you know the right hand side advertising trick - the way we read, etc....)   I did a lot of math - ended up surprisingly choosing square 12x12 after much plotting out - I could get many important points on some important golden mean lines so that pleased me.
    I'm not afraid to fail, I'm not afraid to paint and the worst thing that can happen is I have a small piece of linen in the garbage.  I love to learn and experiment - some of my paintings are horrible, some things are decent and some things make me weep I love them so much.  So, this, I probably scraped back about 4 times and was never really pleased - one phase looked like I had amputated some limbs.  I wanted Natalie (girl walking) to have some sass because she is like that in real life - I didn't want Julia to be only a wheelchair - I tried to make her shoulders and hair pretty and strong and I wanted her wheelchair to have some life in it a bit like Natalie's dress.  Potthast has many paintings of children in shadow so I drew some inspiration to how he could still liven up some shade colors.

    so, this is mostly made up and every day was different. It just evolved into something. My mother likes it, Natalie loves her shoe (?) and Julia loves her hair - go figure.  What do I like?  I'm not sure.  It does look sweet on a wall, so, I suppose, there is that.

    So, that is some of my verbose thought process.  What I never thought of - in a million years!- was to make the hands the focal point.  I also think that is so interesting that it sounds like you would have had their hands at that center cross line?  So, given that is a crappy reference and an experiment of sorts to see if one can make a sweet moment in a poor photo a nice little painting, how would you have cropped it?  I know it takes time and energy but if you have the time and care to indulge, I would love to learn.  Thank you.

  • edited November 2017
    I kind of had to laugh at this post because I too have a sweet loving mother that does these same kind of things. Recently I was set up at a festival and had to leave for a little bit so my mother watched my paintings....I return and she says two of them sold...(at a price less than I had on them) and The lady asked my mother to sign them,  Why.... apparently my mom knew her and the woman would remember it was my mother’s daughter who painted them lol .... so somewhere out there in real estate land are two of my paintings with my moms signature on the backs  ;)
    lol I just laughed and shook my head at the same time and said thank you for watching them for me.
  • @Kingston   that was a very interesting book.  gosh, the math!  I did learn a lot - thank you!
    @jswartzart that's funny - at least your mother doesn't give your paintings away.  I have a ton of relatives (my mother is the youngest of nine children so you can imagine the cousins etc...) - if my mother hears any relative say they liked something I posted, she'll usually say something like "i'm sure she'll do one for you" and then she'll gently tell me "Jamie REALLY LOOOVVVEEESSS your cherries and I told her I bet you'd paint her one" or just yesterday: "Elaine was commenting about your flowers and said she'd give anything to have one in her house and I told her you'd probably love to paint her some know, she just adores irises ..........that would be so nice......she'll be so happy"  and before I know it, I'm commissioned to crank out some paintings as gifts - I guess on some planet canvas is free, paint is free and shipping is free........  When I tell her I am studying and taking classes and trying to get assignments done she'll say "ohhh, just when you get around to it........that'll be fine".  She has a large wall in her house that is full with my paintings - from my first in the 3rd grade to my most recent.  She has always been supportive so that is sweet.  Bless her heart.
    jswartzartalsart[Deleted User]
  • Something like that (first post) could ruin family relations for a long time.
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