Travel Through Portraiture

309 Words2 Pages
l Throughout history people have sought to produce images either of themselves or of others. However, skills required to make portraits were in short supply, and therefore expensive. Until the eighteenth century, therefore, portraits were generally regarded as the privilege of the wealthy. In any case, artists were able, through this medium, not only to depict what they see, but what they believe or prefer to portray. The eighteenth century saw a demand for portraits which were less expensive, and this resulted in two developments. One was the use of miniature portraits, which were relatively much less expensive; the other was the popularity of profile pictures, usually traces from the shadow cast by a lamp, sometimes cut freehand from paper. This technique was named after Etienne de Silhouette (1709-1767), who made profiles, and such silhouettes, often embellished with gold, became very popular. Throughout history, portraiture has evolved a great deal.
Medieval Portraiture
During the medieval period, many of the portraits were done theatrically, with an overemphasized sense of grandness.
Renaissance Portraiture
The renaissance period marked an important period in the history of portraiture. Two of the big influences on portraiture in this time include: The invention of oil painting and the move to more realistic portraiture.
19th Century Portraiture
One big shift in the 19th century was the invention of the camera. This forced artists to differentiate themselves. Photography took much of the lower-end business from portrait artists. Higher end artists had to expand their techniques in order to compete with the realness of photography.
20th Century
Many artists in the 20th century took portraiture in directions it had never been before. Many artists diverted completed from painting realistic art and instead focused on creating art the exuded a certain
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