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Melissa Tobia

Commission Information

This artist accepts work by commission. Read below for details.

I can paint classical, illustrative and surrealist portraits. Each portrait is unique. I aim to create a bold intense portrait that portrays the soul and personality of the model, by reflecting my own sensitivity, perspective and intuitive feelings and sense of the model. The characters can look thoughtful, emotional and in their own world, the portraits are almost somewhat psychological. I also like to use humor in my portraits. I particularly like to create surreal works which involve unique, creative, almost fictional pieces which I like to call "Surrealist Portraits". Here the model can completely use their imagination when creating the composition for their portrait by combating realism with bizarre dream-like imaginary creations which can even defy the laws of gravity and the traditional classical portrait genre. I start by discussing ideas with the client about their portrait, discussing the possibilities, solutions, and steps, and how the client sees their self and would like to be perceived through my eyes and vision. At this stage some quick sketches, color studies and retouched photographs will be made. I work mainly from photographs up until the final stages to completion. To create a portrait, I would need a good quality photo (preferably high resolution, multiple photographs are great) and any possible references you might have, if creating a surrealist portrait.


Cost varies based on methods, materials, size of work and time. Quotes and prices will be discussed. My prices do not include any travel, accommodation expenses and delivery charges. Framing can be arranged, if required, at an additional cost. 1/3 of cost is due up front for materials; the following 1/3 is due half-way; and the final payment is due upon completion. I take paypal (paypal takes credit cards and more), money orders and cashier checks for USA buyers only. For international orders I ONLY take paypal. You can sign up for a free paypal acct by going to If final payment is not made within 30 days from date of completion, the piece will be sold immediately with previous payments NOT being refundable.


I am always interested in commission work, and can work in a variety of materials ranging from pencil, pastels, oil, and watercolor. I am able to paint different subject matters as well, such as landscapes, flowers, portraits, pets, figures, objects, still-lifes, etc. Timescales for completing a piece of art will vary from piece to piece depending on individual requirements, commissions usually take three to four months from start to finish.


Please visit my website at to see my portfolio or to contact me.

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