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Chris Bennett
Commission of 'Dr. O'
I recently completed a portrait of two children, which I received through Commission a Portrait. The family lived in London and their mother is a doctor, whom I shall henceforth refer to as “Dr O”. I visited the family in March 2006 to take photos and duly started work on the portrait.

Another part of my life is with a jazz band, which “stars” my wife and for which I play piano and compose many of the works. In July we were in the Isle of Wight where Sarah, my wife, was singing with another band. She was rehearsing with the pianist, a retired doctor, at his home with the rest of the band.

After the rehearsal, we all sat and had tea in the beautiful garden with the pianist’s wife, also a retired doctor. Conversation moved from music to more general topics and what we did for a living outside our musical interests and Sarah happened to mention that I was a painter and enjoyed painting portraits and that we had taken photos of a doctor’s family a short while ago.

Without actually mentioning Dr. O’s name, Sarah went on to describe a peculiarity of the garden of this particular London town house, which had struck her at the time. At this point, and to our utter amazement, the retired lady doctor shouted out Dr. O’s name. She knew Doctor O very well and had in fact set up and run her practice for a few years in London and had retired just a few months previously.

A few days later she rang Dr. O and asked how the portrait was going…

I delivered the portrait off in London in September 2006, to the delight of all; Dr. O, her husband and the children I had painted.
 
Chris Bennett    Chris Bennett
 
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