Portraiture


Portraiture and Portrait Making


A Portrait is like living object, looking at one, an observer has most of the same feelings as when looking at a real human being. We can dislike it, fear it, be attracted to it, or be repulsed by it. A model always looks at his or her own portrait as if it is some kind of a deep reflection which holds some truth about themselves which they have not yet discovered. Portraits are so mysterious because they seem to hold a sense of permanence which is lacking within ourselves, and yet the portrait inevitably also reflects the present. Portraits can speak to the model in ways which nothing else can. To look at your own portrait is to have a spiritual experience.


Portraits are made either from direct observation or from a photograph. Both have their benefits. Portraiture from a live model usually have a more human quality to them then portraits from photographs. Creating a portrait is a very intimate process between the artist and the model. The role of the artist is to connect with the model on such a deep level as if to see through and into their soul, and only then can a portrait have sincerity and life within it. In the case of portraiture from photographs, the model is free from long hours of sitting or standing in one position, and the artist is free to impose onto the artwork whatever feeling the photograph generates in him.


A live person never generates the same feeling as does a photograph. A portrait from a photograph may be a more exact replica of the model but it will never have as much spontaneity which is so natural in living three-dimensional organisms.