The Cartist

In The Media - Corvette Courier

Official magazine of the Long Island Corvette Owners Association

 

 

An Artful Way to Avoid an Argument

 

by Lloyd Rosen, Editor-in-Chief - Published April 2021

 

Every year, I hear the same question around this time of year; “What do you want for your birthday”. I’m not a complex guy, and I don’t think I’m difficult to shop for, but the question always leads to a heated discussion and an argument. “How about something for your car?” Now we’re getting somewhere.  But what?  If there’s something I want for the Corvette, either I already bought it myself or it cost more than I wanted to spend.

This year, when the questions about what I wanted for my birthday began, something new presented itself (no pun intended). Enter “The Cartist”, a professional automotive artist and designer based in Nelson Mandela Bay, South Africa.  The samples of his artwork seemed really good on his website. So I figured since I was the one who found him, and encouraged LICOA members to hire him to do a commissioned work, I should be prepared to put my own money on the line.

So I reached out to The Cartist (real name Clive Botha) by email and started the wheels turning on a commissioned artwork of my own Grand Sport. The first step was to give the car a quick wash, as it was dusty and needed a good cleaning after a long cold winter. Then I took a whole bunch of photos of the car from various angles, including some closeups to highlight some of the details, such as the wheels and side skirts. I emailed the photos to Clive.

The next day, I received an email with a couple of mock-ups of suggested layouts for the final artwork utilizing the photos I sent. After picking the layout I liked and choosing the “Premium” package, Clive emailed me a request for payment through PayPal. I made the payment, and Clive immediately thanked me for the payment and told me he would send me a rough sketch in a few days (fitting my commissioned work into his schedule among his other projects).

About one week later, Clive sent me a photo of the preliminary pencil sketch he prepared following the layout in the chosen mock-up, and asked if I was happy with it or if there was anything I wanted changed. I sent him my comments, pointed out some additional details I wanted to make sure appeared in the final piece, sent him a couple more close up photos of my car, and told him to go ahead with the layout.

A few days later Clive sent me an email telling me he completed the artwork, and sent me another photo, this time of a full color rendering. It was really impressive! He asked if there were any adjustments I wanted before he scanned the artwork. I was amazed at the detail and how realistic it looked, even though it was done with pens and markers.

 

 

However, I noted a couple of details I wanted him to refine, such as the crossed flag logo on the wheel hub, and the look of the brake rotor. I was concerned that it may be too late to make any changes since he said it was “done”. But when I asked if he could make the changes, he said “no problem”, and the next day he sent me another photo with the exact changes I requested.

Now it’s done, I thought. I let Clive know I was very happy with it, and he told me he would ship the final piece to me the next business day (a Monday). He asked me to confirm my shipping address, my contact information, and asked me how I wanted the car described for the certificate of authenticity. “2011 Grand Sport Convertible”, was my response, along with all the other information he requested.

That Monday, Clive sent me an email confirming he had shipped out the artwork, gave me the tracking number and also a link for me to download the scanned images, a high-res version and a low-res version. I clicked on the links and couldn’t believe how great they looked. Unless you looked really close, you would think it was a photograph, but zooming in, you can see the hand drawn artwork. The detail was amazing, right down to the chrome details, the shadows and the reflections in the paintwork on the nose and tail of the car.

Wow! Not only did I get the scanned images, but with the Premium package I selected, Clive also was shipping me the actual artwork on 13”x20” quality art paper. I figured since he was shipping it to me from his studio in South Africa, it would be at least a couple more weeks before it arrived. I was wrong.

Four days later, on Friday, I found a shipping tube left by my front door by UPS. It was a very sturdy tube with plastic caps on each end. It would take a lot of force to bend or crush this tube, I thought. I cut the tape off one end of the tube, pulled off the plastic cap, and found some bubble wrap inside, wrapped around the rolled up artwork.

In addition to the actual art, Clive also sent me his preliminary pencil sketch and a signed certificate of authenticity. I was very pleased and impressed with the way the artwork was packaged, certain to arrive in perfect condition. Time for the entire process, beginning to end - about three weeks.

Clive then went ahead and added the picture of my car to the portfolio on his website and Instagram page for the whole world to see. My car has 120 likes, so far!

Clive followed up with an email, confirming that I received the package in good condition, and that I was pleased with everything. Couldn’t be happier and worth every penny. I’m looking forward to getting the artwork framed so I can hang it up with my other Corvette memorabilia.

I now have an original artwork and a keepsake of my own Corvette, unlike anyone else’s. Best of all, the question about what I wanted for my birthday this year was answered without heated discussion or argument.

For more info on commissioning your own artwork visit: www.thecartist.com

 

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