I can now give claim that my art has been displayed in an art museum (before I’m dead, too!). Specifically the Tacoma Art Museum.

So I suppose I should fill you in on the details…

My art professor told us on the last day of class (a Monday) that he had been approached by Pierce’s “Fedex Guy,” and that he wanted a last-minute portrait done of his wife. The coming Friday was their anniversary, and Fedex Guy – Scott, as I later learned – needed something fast. He used to be a painter, he later explained to me over the phone, and he stopped regularly creating art as his life progressed. But his wife, Rosemary, always wished he would paint her. LAST anniversary he bought paints and supplies with the promise of a portrait for their next anniversary. Well…it was that time again and he said, “I need help!”

For her birthday, he had treated her to a trip to Italy (I know, right?), and he sent this photo with the request:

A little bit has been cropped out, but you get the idea. Super cute, huh? So he stopped by on Tuesday to check out my preliminary sketch (bringing chai tea because he is just that awesome of a guy), and loved what I showed him. Wednesday I got started; finished up the detailed drawing, then on Thursday (after studying in the early morning and taking my A&P final in the afternoon) I actually started painting. Friday I woke up early to start on it again, had to leave at 3:30 to take my sister to the airport, then went directly to teach a 7pm class. Got home and started painting at 11, went until 4am (pretty well finished by that time). Saturday was my first day at my new job (working at the Maritime History Museum in Gig Harbor) at 9:30, and I still managed to keep painting before I hurried out the door (I also had to teach a child’s birthday party class at 2 that day, so I think I might have O.D.ed on caffeine…). This is the end result:

And this is where it gets cute. He wanted to surprise her by having her “happen upon it” in the Tacoma Art Museum. He called ahead of time and talked to the manager (or whatever her position was) and she was totally enthusiastic about letting it go up. Saturday I was too busy to help, so my awesome mom took up the gauntlet, went early to get it framed and ran it over to the museum before noon. Worked out like clockwork.

Okay, so it might not have been hung in the gallery, but it totally still counts. Scott and Rosemary loved it and it was a nice challenge for me to finish in 2 solid days worth of work 🙂

And apparently the TAM has these kind of requests quite regularly. My favorite account was when this soldier wanted to propose to his girlfriend before he was shipped out to Afghanistan and organized the whole thing at the museum. He surprised her with 4 paintings; one of them getting married, one with them on their honeymoon, one with them buying a house, and the last with them having children. Then he asked her to share this future with him. Heard anything more romantic? Jeez.

What would he have done if she had said no??? Burned ’em, I guess. Or machine-gunned (yes, a verb) them.

Anyways…that was my first taste of a museum show. I guess my next goal is to make it *slightly* more legit. Haha

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