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We paint 4 different ways so that you can be in charge of your wallet and not the other way around.
Just paint it—fast and inexpensive (you will make many decisions on where to land the thread).
Note how the edges of the flower are undefined, and there are many areas of blended color.
Stitch paint key areas (noses, mouths, eyes, lettering) and just paint the rest—medium expense.
The key areas of light and dark colors are more defined, as are the edges of the petals.
Full stitch paint—an investment, but you know exactly where to land the thread.
The entire flower is stitch painted with clear color separation, defined edges, and defined key areas. Number of colors remains minimal.
Full stitch paint with shading and blending options—biggest investment, generally for an advanced stitcher that is capable of many options.
The entire flower is stitch painted with a variety of colors for maximum blending opportunities. There is clear color separation, defined edges, and defined key areas.
I, Russell have had many things custom painted and I always choose technique #3 as I like a meditative stitching process. Stephen, my partner can easily do technique 1, 2, 3 or 4 because he is often adding specialty stitches to his project and therefore going right over the stitch painted canvas.
Many people who do specialty stitches like to do them within a stitch painted canvas to designate the areas of interest, this is particularly helpful in technique 3 or 4. It really just comes down to what you want and your wallet desires.
I often get ideas from images.google.com by entering some of my favorite topics/subjects and searching. Then I click on an image and find the original image and send that link to our painter and she/he gives me a cost for whatever dimension and mesh count I desire.