Painters and photographers may manipulate the emotional content of a portrait by choosing an appropriate viewing distance: e.g. a formal and official portrait may benefit from a distant viewpoint, while an effect of intimacy and openness may be obtained with a close viewpoint. Multiple inconsistent viewpoints found in classical full-length portraits may be explained by the need to combine close-up views of some body parts, within an overall undistorted figure.

Nevertheless, a portrait always draws us to it. It disconcerts us and we consider it to be almost magic. Especially as, in our role of spectators, we have the privilege of witnessing the outcome of the battle. We become 'voyeurs' of a dialogue that, although still alien to us, is rich in humanity and fascinating in artistic terms. We imagine now what the subject of the photograph is really like. What kind of person is the artist who has been able to depict this person in such a tangible manner? We use our personal experience to construct our own hypotheses. From this point of view, we the spectators, also become creative beings.

Please select your artist:

Ed Chapman

George Underwood