Event Painting for the launch of NC Wish Upon A Wedding – by Raleigh Live Event Artist

North Carolina Wish Upon A Wedding, Live Event painting. 22x28. Oil on linen. Live event artist - Tesh Parekh

It was quite an honor doing a live event painting for the launch of North Carolina Wish Upon A Wedding. The launch party was held at Top of the Hill restaurant in Chapel Hill (the Great Room). WUW supports such an amazing cause! I met so many wonderful people at this event (I had the privilege of knowing many of them prior to this event). I thank the NC chapter of WUW for giving me the opportunity to participate. I look forward to working with this non-profit- for live painting as well as for photography.

This was a  large live painting- 22×28. Oil on linen.  I paint live in watercolors as well. The event was from 6 PM – 9 PM. I arrived at the venue an hour early to setup. Deciding what to paint and how much to paint are two of the most important decisions. Most weddings have a window of 5-8 hours during which I paint either ceremony or reception. The size of the painting is one of the factors that decides the amount of time needed. Bigger painting in shorter time meant that I would be working quickly. Here is my setup:

My setup for live event oil painting at the Top of Hill restaurant in Chapel Hill. Live event painter - Tesh Parekh

I toned the linen and then started blocking in major shapes and tones. Live painting is an alla prima painting. So, all the concepts of all prima apply when you are painting live. This is similar to painting en plain air. The difference is that many of the weddings and events are indoors (you almost always have to carry your own light for the easel).  Also, most plein air paintings are landscapes or cityscapes, with human subjects being of lesser importance. Wedding paintings (at least the ones I paint) are focused on the bride & groom. Events are different. Some of the events do not have a well-defined subject. So, having the event program was a big help (one of the benefits of working with wedding planning professionals!).

I painted some of the background before event guests started to arrive. Once the attendance was full, I made pencil sketches for my reference. I make quick pencil sketches when I paint live. I use some of those in the finished painting. When the chapter president Veronica Foster spoke briefly, I captured that in the painting. I enjoyed talking to many event guests and fellow wedding professionals while I painted. The photographers and videographers of the event have captured my painting progress- I look forward to seeing those images and video clips. I tightened up and finished the painting before end of the event. Here is the finished painting on the easel:

Finished live event painting on the easel. Notice how the ambient light has changed. Wedding and Event painter - Tesh Parekh

The painting is now with NC WUW. I look forward to donating my live wedding paintings to WUW.

I used variety of artist oil colors and brushes for this painting. I currently do not use any chemicals or additivies when I paint live. This keeps the painting process odor-free, toxin-free and the paintings chemically sound. I know some artists use paint thinners like OMS. Just because OMS is odor-free does not make it less toxic! And while it is possible to create giant paintings quickly by thinning the paint, the long-term stability of such paintings is doubtful (not to mention that the paint will look flat soon). I want my patrons to enjoy their commissions for a very long time as heirlooms. So, I strive to use the best materials. That is one of the reasons I use quality linen as a support.

My next project is to create painting for a competition…

– Tesh Parekh

Artist & Photographer


Be a fan of my work: facebook.com/weddingpainter



“Pursuit of Light” wins honorable mention in Jerry’s Artarama’s Lukas painting contest

Pursuit of Light. 24×18. Oil on linen. Available.

Pursuit of Light. 24x18. Oil on Linen. Artist - Tesh Parekh

While I am preparing to paint live this weekend (wedding reception at the Angus Barn Pavilions), I just received this news! My painting “Pursuit of Light” has won honorable mention in the Jerry’s Artarama’s Lukas competition. Quick post- will write more about this painting soon…

– Tesh Parekh




email: tesh@teshfineartphoto.com




A Landscape Painting in Oil- “After The Storm, Pine Knoll Shores” by North Carolina Fine Artist

“After The Storm, Pine Knoll Shores”. Available. Oil on Linen. 20″x30″. Artist – Tesh Parekh

"After The Storm, Pine Knoll Shores". Oil on Linen. 20"x30". Artist - Tesh Parekh

I worked on this painting for a long time. That is quite a change from my live wedding paintings in watercolor and oil. Those commissions are completed on the same day. I also painted this during busy time of wedding photography and wedding painting commissions. There are some pictures which you have to make!

I experienced this beautiful scene during one of my recent trips to North Carolina’s beautiful coast. I had just finished photographing a family portrait session on the Pine Knoll Shores beach. The session was threatened by quick-moving storms. We stayed with our plan and were lucky to get the beautiful light. Normally, I prefer to paint from life. But, I had no time and carried no painting equipment due to the rain. So, I snapped some photos. I used the photos as a reference but, most of the painting is my interpretation.

This painting is also different from my other paintings in couple of ways. Apart from bristle brushes, I used watercolor brushes, mop brushes, paper towels and so on to apply the paint (the paint layer has brush hair which are now part of the painting). And one of the lessons I learned was that paints and tools are just that- tools. I am guilty of believing that only certain brands and brushes can do the job. In the end, your elbow grease and imagination matter as much!

I started the painting with broad washes of paint rubbed in. I used limited palette and painted in layers. Many glazes, scumbles and impastos. I used very little white paint.

I am working on other landscape paintings, both in watercolor and oil. My inspiration comes from walking in the little park in my neighborhood. While not full of awe-inspiring vistas like exotic places, I love this park just as much. I am not sure if it just a coincidence, but, I am also enjoying the works of Isaak Levitan. If I ever make a trip to Russia, it will be to admire his paintings…

– Tesh Parekh

Artist, Photographer and Live Wedding Painter






email: tesh@teshfineartphoto.com

Sasha Souza at the Cobblestone Hall- a live event painting by Tesh Parekh

Sasha Souza at Cobblestone Hall. Live Event painting. Watercolor. 11×14.

Sasha Souza is one of the premiere event designers and a top innovator in the wedding industry. She is one of only a handful of wedding designers who have been named a Master Bridal Consultant, the highest designation given by the Association of Bridal Consultants. Souza is the recipient of numerous awards including the Special Events Magazine Gala Award winner for “Best Dining Tabletop Design”, Event Solutions Magazine “Designer of the Year” and three ISES Westie Awards

The Greater Triangle North Carolina Chapter of the International Special Events Society (ISES) hosted “Emerging Trends with Sasha Souza ”

This event was held at the Cobblestone Hall in Raleigh. This is a brand new venue- ideal for weddings and events.

ISES had invited me to paint live at the event. Earlier in the day, I had photographed Sasha’s lunch with ISES and TWCE members at 18 Seaboard Restaurant. We will be posting images of that event on our photography blog: iwpphotography.wordpress.com

Sasha was scheduled to present at 7 PM. I setup earlier to get started with the drawing and composition. Due to the length of the event, I decided to use 11×14 format. I used Holbein watercolors, Saunders Waterford 140 lb rough surface paper, and mostly Escoda brushes- my new favorites!

Image below shows completed drawing.

As with many indoor events, the difficult part is the lighting. In the beginning I had outside light on my setup. Once the Sun went down, there were many sources of light- each with different color temperature! But, live event painting is like a roller-coaster ride: once you are buckled-up and rolling, all you can do is have fun!

I enjoyed meeting my friends at ISES and many nice folks who stopped by to see me work. I wouldn’t say this was the easiest painting, but I think I have captured Sasha well- see the image above! This painting was presented to Sasha at the end of the event. She shared many kind words. I enjoyed listening to her while I was painting.

We have her latest book “Signature Sasha: Magnificent Weddings by Design”- I look forward to reading it!

This has been a good week for painting. Today I drove to Kinston for the Kinston CCA annual paint out. I did two paintings: 16×20 oil on linen and 13×19 watercolor on paper. I will be posting those later.

Tomorrow I will be in Wilmington to sign limited edition prints of my painting “Building Dreams”. This watercolor was selected for the 2010 Parade of Homes magazine cover. Check my blog later for more information on this painting.

As an artist, I enjoy painting all subjects: portraits, still life and landscape. However, I love painting from life the most. Both plein air painting and live wedding & event painting offer me the opportunity to do just that! I accept commissions and I travel!

– Tesh Parekh