Frequently Asked Questions

Why order a portrait?

In some cases, the portrait is part of a family tradition . The client grew up in a house full of portraits and wants to add his own to the gallery of his ancestors. The military also constitutes an important part of the clientele of a portrait painter. Another reason for calling on a portrait painter: family love. This is how parents or grandparents ask me to do portraits of their children or their grandchildren. The portrait can also become a corporate gift. Employees or members of an association then join together to order the portrait of their director or a colleague.

There is another use of the portrait, somewhat unknown but very original: it can replace the profile picture on Internet social networks. You can see two examples of this style of portraits of which I am the author by clicking on the following links: Facebook and LinkedIn . Those who did always get a lot of compliments!

How much does it cost?

This is usually the first question that comes to the mind of anyone wishing to hire the services of a portrait painter. First of all, you should know that the realization of a portrait takes between 3 weeks and several months. Indeed, an oil painting is done in several coats and you have to wait for it to dry between coats. Another element that determines the amount of work to be done, and therefore the price, is the dimensions of the canvas. The larger the portrait, the longer it will take. Then comes the complexity of the portrait. Thus, the addition of decorations (medals), jewelry, an elaborate dress or even a background representing furniture or a landscape are all elements that come into play in determining the price. In addition, the painting material represents a significant cost, it is not uncommon for it to cost the painter several hundred Euros for a single painting. To find out more about the prices, I invite you to contact me by Email (emmanuel.beyens@yahoo.fr) and I will then send you the list of my prices.

 

What technique do you use?

I paint mainly in oils. It is the queen of portrait techniques! It is also the most complex technique and which takes the longest to learn but which gives the best results.

How long does it take to make a portrait?

An oil painting is done in several coats and you have to wait for it to dry between coats. However, to move faster, the artist can sometimes work on part of the canvas while waiting for another part to dry. For a small portrait measuring 30 x 40 cm with a plain background, it takes about a month. If the portrait is large, for example 100 x 140 cm, the background is a landscape and the subject is wearing a uniform with decorations, it may take up to four months. In general, it takes an average of two months of work.

 

What are the possible dimensions?

A small portrait will be at least 20 x 30 cm. It can be up to 120 x 160 cm for a large size; beyond that, the canvas becomes complicated to transport and handle. The usual dimensions to represent a subject from head to knee are between 60 x 80 cm and 80 x 120 cm. On the other hand, if only the bust is represented, the most suitable proportions are around 50 x 60 cm. A portrait painted on an oval canvas, as was done much before the 20th century, is another possibility.

Should the subject pose?

Ideally, the subject should be able to pose from start to finish for the portrait painter. However, this is rarely possible because the realization of a portrait represents tens of hours of work and sometimes even several hundred hours! Almost everyone has work or school activities that make this very difficult. So here's how I proceed when the subject has little time available: I start by taking about 30 photos of the subject. On this basis I draw the whole then I paint the silhouette with the clothes. The posing sessions are then reserved mainly for the realization of the face and hands.

Can you make a portrait just from photos?

It is also possible, even if the fact of not posing sometimes prevents the portrait painter from properly capturing the personality of his subject. The photo-based portrait is, however, a practical solution considered when the subject lives far away, is very busy or when the health situation prevents people from meeting, as during the coronavirus epidemic. However, it is essential that the photos provided are of good quality and as close as possible to what the portrait should be.

Is it possible to represent several subjects on a portrait?

It's possible, of course! This is commonly done for a family portrait, for example.

Do you interpret the subject to be painted in your own way?

Each portrait painter has his own way of working. Some do not make concessions and represent the subject as they see fit, even if it means highlighting its faults. For my part, I consider that the portrait that I realize for my client will belong entirely to him. It is him who will contemplate it when it is on a wall in his home and who will then pass it on to his descendants. In other words, the result must above all please my client, especially since it is an order. If my pictorial style will always remain the same, on the other hand, I will try to answer my best to the desideratas which are submitted to me.

How to order a portrait?

For that, you just have to go to the CONTACT page of the site and send me a message in which you can ask me the questions you want and also already explain to me the portrait that you would like me to make for you. I will get back to you as soon as possible and we can then arrange a telephone appointment or a meeting to go into more details.