Elton John, Farewell No.3 is finished!

Sometime ago I was approached to produce a painting of Elton John in concert at his Farewell Yellow Brick Road Tour. The client sent me photographs that he had taken at a concert in the USA and enquired whether I would produce a painting from them. I explained that I only ever paint concerts that I have attended as I consider the experience of being at a live music performance is crucial in expressing the atmosphere and mood. I have declined a number of commissions of bands or musicians for this same reason. Before I replied to this particular potential client I checked dates and venues for the “Farewell Yellow Brick Road Tour and discovered that Elton John was to perform at Manchester Arena. The client agreed to include the price of a ticket in addition to the cost of the painting. He asked me to produce a work from the same viewpoint that he had enjoyed when he attended an Elton John concert in United States of America. I sent the client a map of Manchester Arena and he selected a seating area which would give me a similar view to that which he had in the States.

The ticket was bought but as we moved closer to the date, Elton John fell and injured himself. The Manchester gig was postponed. About two years later I found myself just one week away from the concert at Manchester Arena . Exactly one week before the gig my wife, Mel, caught COVID (for the first time). Whilst I was clearly concerned about her well-being, I was also extremely anxious to avoid catching COVID (again) having waited the best part of three years for the opportunity to start the commission!

Happily, I escaped COVID this time around and was able to see Elton John. The client recommended that I watch the film, “Rocket Man” which I duly did. The film but particularly the live performance from Elton John had a massive effect on me. I don’t think a week has gone by since the concert where I have not listened to his music. I am a convert, I’m a fan! Why it has taken me so long to appreciate this I’ll never know.

When I studied the photographs and film footage that I’d shot at the concert, I decided that there were three potential paintings from the gig. “Elton John, Farewell No.1” and “Elton John, Farewell No.2” have been shipped (flown actually) to America having been SOLD. Here are photographs of the third painting, “Elton John, Farewell No.3”, oil on canvas, 40.5cm x 51cm…still wet in places and only finished on Tuesday (yesterday).

Painting of Elton John
Elton John on easel


Elton John piano stool and coat tails
Detail Elton John


Close up of the stage
Detail Elton John, stage


Elton John, hands reflected in piano
Detail Elton John reflection of hands on keys


Elton John's piano
Elton John, piano


Elton John on piano stool
Elton John on piano stool


Detail Elton John
Detail Elton John


Detail Elton John jacket
Detail Elton John jacket


Elton John in concert
Elton John Farewell No3

Some paintings require enormous effort and are fraught with anxiety and various issues. They are often a struggle. These three, though, have “fallen off the brush”! They have taken over two months to produce but they have not been easy in their invention and planning. They have not been easy in their production but everything did seem to go so well that all three seemed to just fall off my brush!