About my portraits:
Supports: I prefer to use either linen or polyester for commissioned portraits. Linen is traditional and has a characteristic natural look. Polyester is sturdier and will likely fare better in humid environments. It has an even texture, which works well for portraits.
Medium: I use professional quality oil colors with excellent lightfastness.
Process: Good communication is essential from the start. It’s important to understand the client’s, and usually the subject’s ideas about what the portrait means to them. Once everyone is comfortably on the same page, a photo session follows. This can be very casual or quite formal, depending on the situation. I then review the material and decide if I have what I need. A portrait can typically take anywhere between one to six months to complete depending on urgency, complexity and scope of the project.
Client’s role: I work to achieve a natural likeness, and capturing something of a person’s spirit and stance toward life is an important part of that. Thus it’s always a bonus for me when the subject is engaged in the process. It’s my job to knit it all together, but I welcome ideas about location, dress, hair, and things like attitude and atmosphere.
Reference materials: It’s hard for people to sit long enough to have a portrait painted, so I often work from photos that I take – the more the better. A good portrait is not an enlarged and enhanced copy of a photo – there are great photo services that do that. Rather, I use a collection of images to help me visualize three dimensional shapes. I may also make charcoal, pencil, or oil sketches when appropriate.
Cost: Cost varies depending on size, complexity and urgency of the project. I welcome inquiries and enjoy discussing the possibilities.