A talented Big Issue vendor who recently appeared in the magazine explaining the process he uses for creating art has been rewarded with commissions from across the country.
Keen artist Slavi Slavov appeared as a Vendor Expert back in March offering tips on how to create portraits, pastels and paintings.
Soon afterwards he was delighted to receive emails from as far afield as Canterbury and Newcastle asking him to create some bespoke art.
“It was so exciting, I just couldn’t believe it,” he said. “I appreciate everything and it’s really great. The people are lovely. We just emailed each other, they sent me a picture, I did my work and in a couple of days and I sent it back to them.”
Slavi sells The Big Issue in Aberystwyth in Wales, but in his younger days he spent a year in art school in Sofia, Bulgaria. He couldn’t afford to study for longer but the love of drawing and painting never left him.
And it’s not only people and landscapes he can turn his hand to. One of the commissions was from a woman who wanted a portrait of her guinea pigs.
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“There were five of them and I did it in pastel on really good paper,” Big Issue vendor Slavi said. “I told her it’s 15 quid and she said, no way! I said yeah, yeah. That’s 15 quid. But she sent me £37.50. She paid the post and she doubled the money that I asked for. It’s amazing.”
One of his paintings to appear in the magazine, Reflections, was a street scene from the window of Caffe Nero in Carmarthen. The manager of the coffee shop has now bought the picture and plans to hang it in the café for customers to enjoy.
“She gave me £100 but I gave back £20,” Slavi said. “I don’t think about money, I’m so pleased to give somebody something. I feel useful.”
Slavi can be contacted about commissions and purchases via email.