A Painting of Presidential Proportions!

I got to take on a very challenging and REALLY fun project over Christmas: Painting another person into an incredible painting by Andy Thomas in a much looser style than I’m used to painting in. We have a friend who loves Andy’s painting, Grand Ol’ Gang (shown below).

The original painting by Andy Thomas

We thought he would flip out if he were painted INTO it, like he was just hanging out with the Presidents (and I happened to have sneaky access to some great head shots of him). So, I did a little research on the best way to do this and preserve the integrity of the giclee’ while matching the style of the painting. It turns out that me and acrylics still don’t get along, though they are recommended for painting on top of canvas prints. But, after a little more research and an intuition check, I decided to treat the area to be painted with clear gesso and then I painted on top with my beloved oils. Yay for finding a way!

The completed painting! Our friend likes to hang out with VIPs.

Below is a close-up of my portion of the painting. He was floored when he opened it for Christmas and it made all of the hours I spent making it perfect so worth it! I’m framing it for him this week.

Detail of my work

I’d love to know what you think about this project. Comment if you like it. Share it on Facebook if you love it. Thanks!


  • Allow me to say how excited we all were when Robert opened the painting! Can you even imagine a cooler gift? I think this tops anything he’s ever received! Kelly, you are the best I have ever seen anywhere in the world. And I know you, too. Ha!

    January 18, 2012
  • OH Kelly -you are so gifted by our precious LORD. Yea for Him giving you the insight of how to fix this so you could add your friend. Amazing. Besides, I LOVE the picture of the presidents. I have never seen it before.

    January 19, 2012

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