2019 Commissions

Happy New Year!

Did you know that I accept commissions? If you’re interested in having me create an artwork especially for you, your home, your office, as a gift, or even for a special project, I would love to work together!


First, let’s get a few things out of the way so you know what you can expect from this process.

Here’s what I love to do: Anything with similar themes to what’s already in my work (fantasy, fairy tales, mythology, women, magic, occult, etc.) I typically won’t accept any commissioned artwork that wouldn’t seamlessly fit into my current portfolio of artwork.

Here’s what I don’t do: Standard portraits of people and/or pets that require a likeness. I prefer not to commit to this because my style isn’t completely based on reality. Some exceptions are possible (I’d love to paint more David Bowie!).

There’s a lot of trust required in this process and communication, especially in the beginning, is very important for a great experience for everyone involved!

Types of Commissions

There are many different types of commissions. Here are a few of the most common types I accept:

Word Inspiration Commission

These are the most affordable private commissions available from me. I am very inspired by interesting words, and really enjoy getting to create artwork based on that! Here’s how that works: you choose 2-3 descriptive or conceptually interesting words. Some examples include previous titles for my paintings, such as "Incipient," "Limerence," and "Panacea." No specific people, places, things, or subject matter can be accepted. You'll also choose a single color (you can be as specific as you like!), and I'll create a painting inspired by one of your word choices while also using that color in the palette.  

Here’s an example of a completed Word Commission. I chose the submitted word “Epiphany” and was given the color Malachite to inspire the direction of the piece. This piece measures 6” x 8” and was painted with watercolor, acrylic, and acryla gouache.

Mood/Inspiration Board Commission

Want something a bit more specific to your interests? This is a more collaborative commission type, wherein you’ll provide me with several images that you’d like for me to draw inspiration from. This works really well by using a Pinterest board! You can include artwork, photography, colors, moods, vibes, anything you like. I’ll work with you based on your inspiration choices and build an idea that will eventually become your painting! I especially love this type of commission because it’s more personal and collaborative, and particularly a fun challenge for me too.

Here’s an example of this type of commission. The patron provided me with about 20 images she found inspiring along with some personal themes in her life that I took into account to create this piece from. This piece measures 11” x 14” and was created with watercolor.

Zodiac Commission

During 2019 and likely into 2020, I’ll be doing portraits of each sign in the zodiac, and am looking for patrons to “sponsor” each sign by commissioning its creation. For example, the sign VIrgo is already claimed by a patron and it will be the first of my Zodiac series that I will create. I will be including the patron in the process and then they will receive the final painting for their private collection. If you have interested in claiming one of the signs for yourself, let’s talk!

Other Private Commissions

If you’ve got a cool idea you’d like to see my take on, please don’t hesitate to get in touch! Rates are similar to Inspiration Board commissions.

Commercial/Corporate Commission

These are commissioned illustrations created for corporations and/or for licensed use. In the last couple years, I’ve created artwork for candle labels, a jigsaw puzzle, and more. If I can create artwork for your project, I would love to chat! This can also include book covers, tarot cards, oracle cards, calendars, labels, and more. My private commission rates do not apply to these commissions, so please get in touch to discuss your project.


2019 Commission Rates

All private commissions require a 25% non-refundable deposit to claim your place in my commission line. The next 25% will be due when it’s time to begin your commissioned artwork, with the final 50% due upon completion along with shipping costs.

All prices are in USD. For the best bang for your buck, I strongly recommend no smaller than 11” x 14.” Custom sizes are available - these are just standard sizes readily available as panels.

Word Commission Rates

  • For sizes 6” x 8” and under, please go here.

  • 8” x 10” - $650

  • 9” x 12” - $800

  • 11” x 14” - $950

  • 12” x 16” - $1250

  • 14” x 18” - $1600

  • 16” x 20” - $2000

  • 18” x 24” - $2800

Mood/Inspiration Board Commission Rates

  • 9” x 12” - $950

  • 11” x 14” - $1200

  • 12” x 16” - $1500

  • 14” x 18” - $1850

  • 16” x 20” - $2400

  • 18” x 24” - $3000

Zodiac Commission Rates

  • 11” x 14” - $1200

  • 12” x 16” - $1500

  • 14” x 18” - $1850

  • 16” x 20” - $2400

  • 18” x 24” - $3000


The Commission Process

It begins with an email! Please get in touch at hello(@)kellymckernan.com with the commission type you’re interested and the size and budget. From there, we’ll determine the turnaround/wait time (dependent on the number of commissions ahead of you - so don’t wait long!). You will put down a 25% non-refundable deposit to keep your place in line, (which is usually a few months depending on my schedule). There will be a simple contract to protect both of our interests and expectations.

Once it’s time to begin your commission, I’ll be in touch for the next 25% deposit, and then process will begin! Here’s a graphic to share the evolution of the typical commission:

Once your piece has begun, it’ll likely be the only thing I’m working on, so the turnaround time back be pretty quick, usually 2-4 weeks.

Pieces are created with watercolor, acrylic, and/or acryla gouache on hot press watercolor paper mounted to a cradled wood panel. The sides will be stained black and the painting will be varnished and ready to hang when it arrives at your door. Paintings are carefully packed and shipped via USPS Priority Mail with insurance and signature required upon delivery.

I can’t wait to work together! Click below to get in touch about your commission.