Expanding on WSJ article: The *Trend* of the Portrait Painting


June 20, 2023

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I create timeless heirloom paintings for couples looking for an original and intentional way to capture their wedding day, and I do it live.

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The Artistic Journey: From Snapshots to Live Wedding Paintings

In today’s fast-paced world, where capturing every moment has become as simple as clicking a button on our smartphones, we often find ourselves overwhelmed with countless digital snapshots. While these photographs serve as visual reminders of our experiences, there is something truly magical about embracing a more personal and meaningful approach to preserving our cherished memories. That’s where live wedding paintings come in—a unique and captivating way to immortalize special occasions.

Imagine walking into a beautifully adorned venue, where an artist sets up an easel, ready to transform the ambiance and emotions of your wedding day into a breathtaking work of art. It’s a departure from the ordinary, a journey that takes us back to the days when portraits were meticulously handcrafted with passion and dedication.


Oil Painting vs. Watercolor Painting: Distinctive Characteristics

When it comes to live wedding paintings, two main mediums often come into play: oil painting and watercolor painting. Each offers a distinct set of characteristics and evokes different emotions.

Oil Painting

Oil painting is known for its richness and vibrancy, capturing colors with depth and intensity. The slow-drying nature of oil paints allows for blending and layering, enabling the artist to create textures and intricate details. This medium is a popular choice for its durability and longevity, ensuring that your wedding painting will stand the test of time, becoming an heirloom passed down through generations.

Think of iconic oil paintings like the serene “Starry Night” by Vincent van Gogh or the captivating “Girl with a Pearl Earring” by Johannes Vermeer. These masterpieces exemplify the power of oil painting to convey emotions and transcend time.

Watercolor Painting

In contrast, watercolor painting embraces a more delicate and ethereal quality. Transparent hues blend seamlessly, creating a subtle and dreamy effect. The quick-drying nature of watercolors demands careful planning and precision, as every stroke carries a sense of spontaneity and fluidity. The luminosity and translucent layers achieved through watercolor technique lend themselves beautifully to capturing the ephemeral moments and fleeting emotions of a wedding day.

Renowned artists like J.M.W. Turner and Winslow Homer have masterfully employed watercolor to depict landscapes and seascapes, capturing the essence of nature’s ever-changing beauty.


Masterful Strokes: Monet, Picasso, Matisse, John Singer Sargent, Bob Ross, and Georgia O’Keeffe

Monet and the Enchanting Impressionist Era

Claude Monet, the father of Impressionism, was captivated by the play of light and color in the natural world. His masterpiece “Water Lilies” immerses us in a tranquil pond, with vibrant brushstrokes creating a sense of movement and serenity. Monet’s preference for oil painting allowed him to capture landscapes and nature’s fleeting moments, infusing his works with a profound sense of atmosphere and emotion.

Picasso’s Revolutionary Spirit

Pablo Picasso, a true artistic chameleon, constantly pushed the boundaries of traditional art. From his somber Blue Period to the abstract forms of Cubism, Picasso fearlessly experimented with various styles and techniques. Both oil painting and watercolor found their place in his artistic journey. While “Guernica” stands as a testament to his oil painting expertise, his watercolor piece “Les Demoiselles d’Avignon” showcases his ability to convey raw energy and emotion with a lighter touch.

Matisse’s Vivid Expressions

Henri Matisse, known for his bold use of color and simplified forms, ventured into different artistic movements throughout his career. From the explosive Fauvism to his later exploration of cut-out collages, Matisse’s artistic expressions were filled with vivacity and joy. While Matisse primarily worked with oil painting during his early years, he delved into watercolor in his later life. Noteworthy artworks such as “The Dance” and “The Snail” showcase his mastery of vibrant colors and the interplay between shapes and spaces, whether through the lush strokes of oil or the delicate washes of watercolor.


John Singer Sargent and the Elegance of Watercolor

John Singer Sargent was renowned for his mastery of portrait painting and his ability to capture the essence and personality of his subjects. While Sargent was widely acclaimed for his oil paintings, he also showcased exceptional talent in watercolor. His watercolor works, such as “Carnation, Lily, Lily, Rose,” display a remarkable understanding of light, color, and atmosphere. With delicate brushstrokes and luminous washes, Sargent’s watercolors possess a sense of freshness and spontaneity, capturing the beauty of fleeting moments.

Bob Ross and the Joy of Watercolor

Bob Ross, beloved by many for his iconic television show “The Joy of Painting,” shared his passion for art and nature with the world. While Ross primarily worked with oil paints on his show, he also dabbled in watercolor. His tranquil landscapes and happy little trees inspired countless individuals to explore their creativity and find solace in the artistic process. With his soothing voice and gentle approach, Bob Ross made art accessible and encouraged everyone to embrace their inner artist.

Georgia O’Keeffe and the Intimate Visions

Georgia O’Keeffe, known for her larger-than-life flower paintings and stunning landscapes, was a trailblazing artist in the early 20th century. While O’Keeffe is often associated with her iconic oil paintings, she also experimented with watercolor. Her watercolor works, such as “Blue and Green Music,” reveal a more intimate and experimental side of her artistry. With bold brushstrokes and a keen eye for color, O’Keeffe’s watercolors convey a sense of abstraction and evoke emotional responses from the viewers.

These artists remind us of the versatility and expressive potential of watercolor painting. It is a medium that allows for spontaneity, capturing the essence of a moment with its translucent layers and delicate brushwork. Whether it’s Sargent’s precise observations, Ross’s joyful landscapes, or O’Keeffe’s abstract explorations, watercolor offers a unique means of artistic expression that continues to captivate and inspire.


Photo by Lauren Beauregard Photography (www.laurenbeauregardphotography.com)

The Magic of Commissioning a Live Portrait Painting

Now that we have explored the distinctions between oil painting and watercolor painting, let’s delve into the enchantment of live wedding paintings and the unique value they bring to your special day.

A live wedding painting adds a touch of elegance and artistry to your wedding. As the artist sets up their easel, guests become captivated by the creation taking shape before their eyes. It becomes an interactive and engaging experience, where loved ones can observe the artist’s skill and witness the transformation of a blank canvas into a tangible piece of art.

What sets live wedding paintings apart is the ability to capture the essence and atmosphere of the event in real-time. The artist skillfully observes the interactions, emotions, and intricate details throughout the day, translating them onto the canvas. From the joyous laughter during the speeches to the heartfelt exchanges on the dance floor, every moment is preserved in brushstrokes and colors.

Not only does a live wedding painting become a beautiful focal point during the event, but it also serves as a cherished memento long after the celebration has ended. Unlike digital photographs that may get lost in the digital abyss, a live wedding painting becomes a tangible heirloom—a piece of art that can be proudly displayed and passed down through generations. It holds the memories, the emotions, and the unique atmosphere of that special day, forever etched in paint.

Imagine years from now, sitting with your loved ones, gazing at the painting that encapsulates the magic of your wedding day. Every brushstroke, every color choice, every detail holds the power to transport you back to that cherished moment—to relive the laughter, the tears, and the overwhelming love.


The Best Visual Storyteller

In a world inundated with digital imagery and fleeting moments, live wedding paintings offer a timeless and personal approach to preserving cherished memories. Through the distinction between oil painting and watercolor painting, we recognize the versatility and emotional depth that each medium brings to the canvas.

Just as master painters embraced the transformative power of art, you too have the opportunity to capture the essence of your special day through the strokes of a talented artist. Let their brushes dance across the canvas, infusing your wedding day with a touch of elegance and everlasting beauty.

Step away from the realm of digital snapshots, and embark on a journey that celebrates artistry, love, and the preservation of cherished memories. Choose a live wedding painting and create an heirloom that will continue to tell your unique love story for generations to come.


Bringing your wedding day to life, thrilling your guests with a show-stopping live wedding painting experience, and creating a timeless keepsake that honors your sacred bond and will warm your heart every time you look at it – it’s what I do best.

Hey, I'm Courtney.

From behind the easel, I serve timeless brides who still embrace the unexpected by creating heirloom painting experiences that are immersive, one-of-a-kind, and thrilling to watch.

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With a slightly abstract Impressionist live painting experience that captures the love and joy of your story, shows off the beauty of your wedding day, and helps everyone who enters your future home to feel your wedding day, you’ll finally have THE THING that makes your wedding day unforgettable.

And your guests? They'll talk about your wedding forever because of the experience you gave them.


Simply put? This is way more than just a wedding painting.