The question is always raised, about whether I could paint a portrait from a photograph image or something of the sort, and I think a lot of people can. But as I learned a long time ago, the picture becomes static. For that reason, I prefer to have someone in front of me, so that I can get a sense of them.
It was a fathers day project and I was painting my son and husband at the time. My neighbour, Nicole, owner of Chinola, suggested I continue the portraits in her shop in the lead up to fathers day. So I did, and through Instragram, a potential client came about. She had four portraits to commission! It took two weeks and a couple of face to face sessions.
Typically, I need two 45 minute sessions with the person I am going to paint and this is done within a period of about 3 weeks. I take pictures so I can work on things I may have not captured, but I generally prefer to paint a person that is in front of me. Photographs can present a flat result. Plus, how can one truly be accurate with a persons aura from a mili second photograph shot? In the inbetween time while the painting is drying, I send pictures of changes made and sometimes the client asks for a few tweeks here and there.
I like to provide a calming environment with music and herbal tea of whatever is of preference at the time, we can chat if you like during or we can be quiet, I try to gauge the situation and go with the flow.