I’ve heard it said that the eyes are the windows of the soul. In my mind, the most important part of any portrait is its eyes. If one looks at someone’s eyes they will see reflections of light on the iris. The “whites” of the eyes are never white. The edge of the bottom eyelid is showing. There are many other things that are apparent. Lips aren’t smooth. Look closely at anyone and their lips will have ridges which have highlights and shadows. These are a couple of things I should mention about this painting.

I had this model next to a window to have natural illumination on half of her face. This was done to show shadow and light and make it more interesting. I wanted to focus on her features, so parts of her head go off the canvas.

The most powerful technique in painting this portrait was emotion. Just as a singer or a pianist put feeling into their performance, I have tried to do the same with my art. Some might argue that I could have a more realistic portrayal with a photograph, but this is art, not a photo.

I love this painting.

Comments on Emma Leave a Comment

June 22, 2011

Todd @ 8:00 pm #

I think this is your most elegant painting yet. Marvelous, Tom!

Sarah @ 9:35 pm #


Joanna @ 9:36 pm #

She’s gorgeous! You have captured her beautifully.

Margaret @ 10:20 pm #

You have done an amazing portrait. The eyes are certainly the window to her soul, and her lips are so beautiful. Well done!!

June 23, 2011

Christine @ 10:47 am #

I love this portrait, especially the eyes. I agree with your post that the eyes are the windows to the soul.

Jennifer @ 12:04 pm #

Stunning…the eyes, the lips and the skin are my favorite things.

Angie @ 4:26 pm #

This picture is fantastic! Wow!

Nicole Froerer @ 7:47 pm #

Daddy, this is one of my favorite portraits. I love her eyes. So great!

Susie @ 9:49 pm #

I know that you couldn’t paint at all a year ago, and now your painting is better than ever before! It’s truly a miracle. The eyes are mesmerizing. Just beautiful, Tom!

July 30, 2011

Ashley @ 7:01 pm #

When the painting came up the first thing I saw where the eyes. I loved the eyes, and I thought that they were beautiful! I love the lips as well, and I love all of the shadows around her face. Amazing!

August 3, 2011

Marilyn @ 12:46 am #

Wow. This is a stunning painting! I’m completely mesmerized. There’s so much PERSON there, and such beautiful light. I admire all of your paintings, and I love many of them, but this just might be my favorite ever. Emma lives in her painting. I hope she’s thrilled out of her mind!

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