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What Is A Portrait Painting? (by Stàn Bert Singer)

Do you know what is a portrait, actually?

Below is a not so bad explanation from Wikipedia:

Depending on the size of the detail of the picture, a distinction is made in painting between a headpiece, a bust portrait, a hip portrait (half-figure), a half figure, a knee piece (portrait from the head to the knee), a full figure; according to the posture or turn of the figure, especially of the head, the portrait is described as taken from the front (en face) or from the side (en profil), as a half or three-quarter profile. You can find its overview in the article portrait.


A study head is a sketchy portrait executed more for practice or study. Tronies are fully executed portrait-like head and character studies that do not depict an individual person and were often created by painters as preliminary studies for paintings or a type.

But a good portrait is much more than just the differentiation of sizes and areas - it is about finding and rendering the core, the essence of the person being portrayed, and sometimes venturing an interpretation beyond that.


Therefore, apart from a masterly finger exercise, hyper-realistic images are rare that make a good portrait. Like a camera, the eye and our brain do not see hyper realistically. Two eyes "see" and the brain makes us an image of an interpretation of reality. It is and remains a fleeting moment - capturing this is where the true mastery lies (again, one can learn from the master Leonard da Vinci, for whom the beginning smile was so important for this very reason).

The following portraits are a small selection of my work to give you a first impression, what my understanding of a portrait painting is about.

Very happy to discuss with you their own portrait project. See also some of my pencil portrait works. As mentioned above, the style of my portrait paintings follows the classical and traditional methods of oil painting reminiscent of the masters of the past, like Vermeer, Rembrand, and Leonardo da Vinci. My Studio is well equipped to realize portrait sessions from live or/and a photographer.

Galina (Commission of a portrait)

I am inviting portrait commissions from my studio in Vienna, Döbling. Döbling is easy to reach by car or by public transport - find out more here or contact me directly:

+43 680 442 4290





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Portraits in Oil (by Stàn Bert Singer)

© Copyright Stan Bert Singer I making copies or prints without permition is not allowed I thank you for understanding!
Enzhe - Where are you (Commission-a-Portrait)
Julia Oil Painting on Woodpanel by Stàn Bert Singer
Enzhe - I See you Oil Painting by Stàn Bert Singer
La affascinante - Painting by Stàn Bert Singer
Self portrait - Painting by Stàn Bert Singer
Stefan (Commission of a portrait)
Peter (Commission of a portrait)
Dimitri (Portrait Commission) - Portrait Painting by Stan Bert Singer
Vica (Portrait Commission) - Portrati painting by Stan Bert Singer
Granddad (private Collec,on) - Portrait painting by Stan Bert Singer

Portraits in Pencil

Young Girl on the Window / Junges Mädchen am Fenster - Pencil drawing by Stand Bert Singer
Nelly 2017 - Pencil drawing by Stan Bert Singer
Victoria S. - Pencil drawing by Stan Bert Singer
RUSSIAN MAN IN SUBWAY / Russischer Man in der U-Bahn - Pencil and color pencil drawing by Stan Bert Singer made in Petersburg
Julia - Pencil Drawing by Stan Bert Singer
Julia 201523 Victoria S. With hairband / Victoria S. Mit Haarreifen
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