OK, so John Singer Sargent and Gilbert Stuart are no longer available to immortalize you in portraiture. Now what? To find a contemporary artist, start by meeting potential ones to get some sense of their personal rapport. Remember that a great portrait is not judged solely on the likeness to the subject, but on how well the artist captures the character of the subject. It is important to find an artist who is experienced in the type of portrait you are seeking. Questions to consider in making your decision include: Who is the subject of the portrait—a child or an adult? Will it be based on the photos of a deceased loved one? Where will it hang—in The White House, your house, or the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame? These factors help determine the style, the medium and the size of the portrait.
—Jasmine Sewell ’99
Sewell is managing director of Sewell Fine Portraiture, LLC (www.sewellfp.com), in New York City. The company offers commissioned portraiture, and represents a roster of classically trained artists. Her recent clients include Condoleezza Rice, Madeleine Albright and General Colin Powell, all former U.S. secretaries of state.