The drawing I am currently working on is of four dogs, all of whom have long since passed away. The the owner who no longer can manage pets, wanted something special to remember them by . So I have put them altogether in one drawing. Like some commissions, photographs are provided for me and can be very old with some in black and white and often taken from a distance or in poor light. Even in poor light there is usually enough visual information to pull out and draw with. But artists have to glean every scrap of information including discussing with the owner anything that helps to piece together how they want to remember them and finally there is a degree of artistic license. Artistic license for me, involves bring out the best in something, bringing a subject to life where before was just an ordinary scene.
Another drawing done several years ago was of a eight year old daughter with her two dogs. The mother kept this rather warn postage size black and white photo in her purse for twenty years as a favourite memory. My job was to convert a fuzzy and tiny image into a A4 drawing that brought her favourite memory back to life. When she saw the finished drawing there was a smile and tears were shed.