Since the birth of my son I have painted children. A mothers love for their children is unique and capturing my own son in a timeless portrait was an emotional journey, seeing him appear before my eyes. This was the moment I realised how much more a portrait is than a photo. To me, a photo feels stuck behind a haze, especially as so many photos are taken on poor quality phone cameras. Whereas a portrait feels close and lifelike – touchable – like they are with you – their heart is beating. It’s an emotional event to present a client with a portrait or their children and often there are tears of love and happiness. This is why I love my job – making your heart burst with love is my special gift to you.
To achieve a good likeness in a child portrait I need a really good quality photo. I need to be able to zoom in on the details, especially eyes. It can be difficult to get a good photo especially of young children because they move constantly. So having someone to help you will make it a lot easier. Give your helper something for them to focus on (a game or an activity or even the TV) and then take photos. Asking them to stand still will often make them move more! Try shots where the children aren’t looking at the camera – looking up or looking to their left and not smiling – this will give you a timeless portrait that you will love to look at everyday. Alternatively, if you are local I can photograph your children for you.
Find out how to commission a portrait with Susan here.