Man in a Blue Scarf, 2004
On the subject of portraiture, I read a terrific article in an old Modern Painters magazine titled, Face Off: Seeing yourself through the eyes of Lucien Freud, by the art writer Martin Gayford.
A few excerpts:
...the picture always comes first. Ultimately, indeed, it is the painting not the sitter that survives.
Great portraits do not need to look much like their subjects, and sometimes, one suspects, they don't.
An old quote by Lucien Freud:
The artist who tries to serve nature is only an executive artist. And since the model he so faithfully copies is not going to be hung up next to the picture, since the picture is going to be there on its own, it is of no interest whether it is an accurate copy of the model.
So much for the notion of Freud the meticulous realist.