UNIT 5& 6 -6.10


First research (I)

This is my first research WHICH ABOUT SELF PORTRAIT,

THIS WORK IS Van Gogh .440px-Vincent_van_Gogh_-_Self-Portrait_-_Google_Art_Project_(454045).jpg                    This article refers to portraits of Vincent Van Gogh. It includes self-portraits, portraits of him by other artists, and photographs, one of which is dubious. Van Gogh's dozens of self-portraits were an important part of his oeuvre as a painter. Most probably, van Gogh's self-portraits are depicting the face as it appeared in the mirror he used to reproduce his face, i.e. his right side in the image is in reality the left side of his face.




600px-Mona_Lisa,_by_Leonardo_da_Vinci,_from_C2RMF_retouched.jpg.1 Many questions arose over the years as to the true identity of the woman in the portrait. The Italians call her La Gioconda, which means "the lighthearted woman." The French version, La Joconde, carries a similar meaning, provoking many thoughts and theories about the Mona Lisa. Most experts now believe that she is Lisa del Giocondo, the third wife of a wealthy Florentine silk merchant named Francesco del Giocondo.






Elizabeth had lots of symbolism in her portraits that is easy to overlook.

For example, this “Rainbow” portrait is loaded with symbolism and I’m not sure how I never noticed it before.

  1. “Mon Sine Sole Iris” means No Rainbow Without the Sun. Only the queen’s wisdom can ensure peace and prosperity.
  2. Notice the eyes and the ears? This is something I’ve overlooked and I’m not sure how I could have missed it! Clearly this is symbolizing that she is always watching and listening, or that she has eyes and ears everywhere.
  3. The snake/serpent symbolizes fertility while the heart at the top right hanging from the snake symbolizes love.
  4. In Elizabeth’s hand it looks like she is holding a clear tube – this is indeed a rainbow, however the colors have faded from the portrait. She hold the rainbow in her hand. The rainbow in this portraits symbolizes peace. She’s holding it – does that mean without her there is no peace?

We can also note that there are lots of pearls in this portrait…The pearls symbolize virginity. Isn’t it amazing how one portrait can hold so many symbols!?


gallery research

  500-2019_bp_portrait_award_work_1432[1].jpg                          Emma Hopkins (b.1989) gained a BA (Hons) degree in make-up and prosthetics for performance from the University of the Arts London before studying art therapy and drawing the human anatomy. Her portraits have been seen in numerous group exhibitions in London including those of the Royal Society of Portrait Painters (2015–18), winning the De Lazlo Foundation Award for Excellence, 2018.


the book of portrait




Manu Kaur Saluja (b.1971) studied psychology before undertaking a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in illustration at the school of visual arts and an MFA in painting at New York Academy of Art. Her work has been seen in solo exhibitions in the United States and Canada and in numerous group exhibitions including regular selection for the American Women Artists Juried Exhibition and the Portrait Society of America Award.

The portrait is of Jenne, an artist’s model who through sitting for the artist on several occasions, has become a close friend of Saluja. The artist chose to paint her larger than life-size to convey her inner strength as she waits in the heat of Canal Street station on a hot summer day.

Charlie Schaffer


Imara in her Winter Coat
by Charlie Schaffer
© Charlie Schaffer

Charlie Schaffer (b.1992) undertook a BA in fine art: painting at the University of Brighton. His work has been seen in a number of group exhibitions including the Lynn Painter-Stainers Prize (2014, 2016, 2018, 2019), where he won the Brian Botting Prize for an outstanding representation of the human figure on three occasions, the Royal Society of Portrait Painters (2015, 2016, 2017) and the Sky Arts Portrait Artist of the Year (2014, 2016, 2017) and a solo exhibition in London.

The portrait is of the artist’s friend, Imara, who sat for the painting every week over a period of four months, during which they formed a very close relationship. Schaffer believes that the conversation between artist and sitter is essential in creating a successful portrait




Thomas Ehretsmann (b.1974) gained a degree in illustration from the Ecole des arts décoratifs de Strasbourg (France). His work has been published in numerous books and international magazines and seen in group exhibitions in New York, Strasbourg and Paris. His work was previously selected for the BP Portrait Award in 2016 and 2017, winning second prize.

The portrait is of Mathilde, a student and artist’s model, and was derived from sketches and reference photographs. The concept of the work was uppermost in the artist’s mind during the process rather than purely capturing a likeness, however he felt that Mathilde’s personality came to infuse the overall mood and composition.



Fiona White (b.1964) studied at Prahan College of Art, Melbourne. Her work has been seen in numerous group exhibitions including the Royal Academy Summer Exhibition (2016, 2018), the Stanthorpe Art Prize 2018, New South Wales and Red Dot Miami 2015, United States. She has had solo exhibitions in Australia, the United States and the UK.

The portrait is of Louise, whom White describes as her ‘Muse’. She says that the portrait was: ‘inspired by stories of Louise growing up in Papua New Guinea. She sat for me several times over the course of a few weeks at my house.’



Jeff Midghall (b.1962) undertook a BA (hons) degree in fine art at Kent Institute of Art & Design (Canterbury). His work has been seen in numerous group exhibitions France, Poland and the UK, including the Royal Scottish Academy Exhibition, Glasgow (1998).

The portrait is of the artist’s mother-in-law, and was made after her having been a patient for over a year at a hospice in which she had previously worked as a volunteer. She agreed to being portrayed and the initial sketches were made in her room, which happened to be one with which she had previously felt a special connection. Midghall wanted the painting to capture her humour, strength and defiance.



Tina Oršolic Dalessio (b.1983) trained as a lawyer in Zagreb, Michigan and Maastricht before gaining a degree in painting at the Florence Academy of Art. Her work has been seen in group exhibitions in the United States, Italy and Ireland.

The portrait is of Ruby, a poet who is also Dalessio’s friend and an artist’s model. Dalessio says that she was interested in telling the story of: ‘Strong women who dare to pursue their dreams and chose non-conventional paths in life … my way to pay homage to the female struggle, strength, intelligence and beauty



Values 037, Barry Martin


Keith Milow (b.1945) studied at Camberwell School of Arts and Crafts and the Royal College of Art. His work has been seen in numerous solo exhibitions internationally and is held in public and private collections including those of the British Museum, Tate Galleries and the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art in the UK and the Metropolitan Museum of Art and Museum of Modern Art in the United States.

The portrait is of Milow’s friend and fellow artist, Barry Martin. It is the 37th in a series of fifty individual works painted in ‘negative’ colour values. Usually these are based on selfies that Milow asks the sitters to provide, however in this portrait, Milow took the original photograph which includes an image of Stanley Spencer’s Resurrection at Cookham (Tate galleries) as a background.



Frances Bell (b.1983) undertook a number of courses at the Chares H. Cecil Studios, Florence and returns there regularly to teach. Her work has been seen in numerous group exhibitions including those of the Royal Society of Portrait Painters (2005–18) and the Society of Women Artists (2018–18). She was previously selected for the BP Portrait Award in 2012.

The portrait is of the artist’s friend, Edd, who has sat for her on previous occasions and seemed to be a good choice for a life-size portrait. Bell was keen to capture a period of intense thought, and Edd’s recently cut hair and full beard suggested a philosophical air to her.