When the portrait is 24 x 36 or larger, and when possible, it's best that I take the reference photographs. From my experience, very few parents take photographs of their children the way that I do-they don't zoom in on the face, catch subtle expressions or the detail that I like when I paint the faces.
Oh they catch a lot of smiling faces or cheesy grins, but not those timeless looks that make a portrait ...well, respond to them!
I deliver this one later this week...it wound up a bit larger than the original 24 x 36 (no one has ever complained about that!) but no matter-they will love it :-)
It's all about the face, the pose and lastly the background-which is totally fabricated to bring the focus onto this charming little girl and her rabbit companion!
Now-off to cut the grass-people coming to the studio later today and it's already feeling like late June in North Carolina!