How’s this for flattering? Last week I went to see the full-size portrait of moi that was among those on display in an exhibition of work by my artist friend Katie. It was the biggest painting in the collection and – look, I’ve got to be honest about this – it was definitely one of the best.
As I moved round the room, a low hum of chatter followed me. At first I assumed it was people commenting on how shamelessly I was guzzling the free wine and canapés, but then I realised they were just audibly clocking on that I was the woman on the really big canvas by the window. The one with the pigeon toes, and the slightly stroppy expression. Ooh, how special did I feel? And what a great compliment to Katie’s skill, that complete strangers took one look and knew the painted woman and I were the same person.
Several people came up to me and said: ‘She’s really got you, hasn’t she?’ And yes, I think she had. In the portrait I look a little bit cross, a little bit worried, a little bit cynical, and a little bit self-doubting. I also look like I’m longing for a glass of wine, which – at the time of posing – I can clearly remember I was, and which, on pretty much any given evening of the week, I usually am. So, an all-round pretty good interpretation by Katie of this particular muse, I think.
If you’d like to see more of Katie’s work, her website can be found at http://www.katie-chappell.com/