Definition of a Portrait

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Definition of a Portrait

black and white portrait of a woman
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portrait of a cat
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definition of a portrait
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Hang a portrait!  Portrait art is often overlooked because it’s kind of old-fashioned and dour.  Not so!  The definition of a portrait is a painting, drawing or engraving of a person, especially one depicting face and shoulders, and there are plenty of amazing modern options out there.  I’m sharing some of my faves (that cat!).  When using portrait art, think outside the box.  Reproductions are kind of out, and for the love of God skip those mass-produced portraits of Marilyn Monroe, James Dean, Audrey Hepburn and the like (I know my readers would never go that route {smile}).

As you know, I’m a big fan of graphic black and white art, so black and white photography is a really cool option, it doesn’t clash with any decor color and provides a bold punch.  I like an oversized portrait in a focal point in a room, like the inspiration above, but if you go that route you’ve got to love it, you’ll be looking at it every day.  Society 6 has some fantastic black and white portrait options (seriously, who does not need a portrait of a giant yak – that’s what I’m talking about).  Etsy has some too, though there’s a lot of junk in there (a pencil sketch of Taylor Swift is not what I’m talking about, not even if you’re 13).  But for portrait art, I think it’s better to go alternative, meaning don’t just order something from Pottery Barn (actually pretty much don’t order anything from Pottery Barn, ever, unless you have money to burn and want to sacrifice your very soul).

The best rule of thumb is to find something that speaks to you, something totally crazy and out of the box.  If you buy a standard size, unframed, you can switch it out when you get tired of it (or when you get sick of guests asking “Why do you have a giant portrait of a yak over your sofa?”).  And if you’re looking for some fun and free graphic black and white art until you find that perfect portrait, be sure to pop on over to my new Free Printables page here.  Enjoy!



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