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Walls of Wonder

Make Your Portrait Dreams Come True With Inspiration Photos

Design by Anne Pearson Design | Portraits by Portraits, Inc. Artist Teresa Mattos

Have you ever caught a glimpse of a portrait installed in a friend’s home and been struck by how well it “works” in a certain room? For us, the answer is a resounding YES. The sentimentality of a commissioned portrait is undeniable, but how do you get from the desire to artfully capture your child at a moment in time to the celebratory day when you’re choosing where to hang the portrait on the wall in your home?

We recently came across the living room above designed by TWCG Charlotte’s very own Anne Pearson Design and were struck by how the two portraits on the far wall set this room apart from any other.

"My client owned these two portraits when we began designing this room. We knew we wanted them hanging where you see them here, and I believe they complement the room so well. More contemporary pieces hang on other walls in this room, and I just love how beautifully they work with the portraits. The mixture of artistic styles in this room feels seamless and in perfect harmony!" - Anne Pearson

Seeing these portraits installed, or “in situ” as they say in the art world, is such a great reminder that having an end goal is often necessary to inform the decisions you make when commissioning a portrait.

Portrait by Portraits, Inc. Artist Beth Stephens | Commissioned by Kat Drennen Rogers of Portraits, Inc.

"I chose this pose of my daughter sitting through the chair sideways because I thought it was a fun juxtaposition of formality and rebellion. This describes her so well, in her heirloom lace gown with her legs draped sideways through the chair. Her direct gaze captures her youthfulness but allows me to see the confidence in her personality." - Kat Drennen Rogers

If you’ve been following our Walls of Wonder blog you may recall the "411 on Portrait Commissions” article we shared last year featuring some of our very favorite ladies from Portraits, Inc. Once you’re armed with the knowledge of how to commission a portrait, the fun begins with inspiration photos like Kat's above!!

Here are three simple steps to help you nail down an inspiration photo that will have you well on your way to the celebratory install day...

  1. Find a photo of a portrait installed in a room that you’re drawn to, it may be a formal living room, a dining room, or even a play room.
  2. Note the style of the portrait, whether it is a more traditional oil painting of a child in an heirloom gown or something with a modern twist. Keep in mind your child's lovable traits that you aim to capture. Just as Kat mentions above, the relationship between artistic style and the subject's personality is often what makes portraiture so special!
  3. Consider the portrait size and how framing will come into play later. Read on for a framing example from Kat in the image below...

Portrait by Portraits, Inc. Artist Rob Beckett | Commissioned by Kat Drennen Rogers of Portraits, Inc.

"I chose different artists for all my children's portraits. I wanted each one to be a work of art in itself and have the ability to stand alone and anchor each room where they are located. I chose the artist above because he created a traditional painting with a contemporary feel. The pose, outfit and colors are chic and crisp.  I love the neutral background because I feel like this painting does not “date” itself and can last many generations with a timeless look. I used a floating frame because I love to see the brush strokes wrap all the way around the edges of the canvas." - Kat Drennen Rogers

Now for some thoughts on where to hang a portrait based on the artistic style you choose...

Portrait by Portraits, Inc. Artist Joanette Egeli

"I would hang this portrait in a playroom. Even though this is an oil painting, typically a more formal medium, the whimsical nature of the composition depicts the innocence and curiosity of the young subjects. The artist has painted with "happy" colors that are attractive to most children." - Mary Overstreet of Portraits, Inc.

Portrait by Portraits, Inc. Artist Carol Baxter Kirby | Commissioned by Mary Overstreet of Portraits, Inc.

"I would hang this portrait anywhere! I love the formal look of it with the children dressed up, yet they are barefoot and outside on a bench. This juxtaposition adds to the playfulness and fun that portraiture can convey. Because of this, I believe this portrait could hang in any room in the house. I love to walk around to different walls in my house carrying my portraits to see what speaks to me. You know when a portrait feels at home on its wall -- it just makes the room come together." - Bebe Barnard, President, Portraits, Inc.

Thank you to Anne Person and our Portraits, Inc. experts for inspiring us to go forth confidently towards our portrait goals!! As always, we encourage you to reach out HERE with any and all questions. We'd love to put you in touch with a Portraits, Inc. representative in your area!

xx, Emily