106.68cm X 106.68cm, Masonite board, oil paint
This is a portrait of my son-in-law, Rahul. I did not know my son-in-law well at the time I made this painting, but his portrait is very telling and reveals his personality very clearly. My inner eye was speaking of things about his character through my brush but which I did not see with my physical eyes. Time reveals everything!
There are many telling things about the sitter that are quite obvious in this painting. For instance the eyes. They are dark, large and deep, but do not grip the viewer with the same hypnotic gaze as in other portraits that I have made. If you look carefully, you will see that each eye has a small white star painted in it. This is to indicate his hope for movie stardom.
The lips are well proportioned, but have a little sarcastic half smile that could be interpreted to say, “do you know the real me, or not?”. This man is an actor through and through and this portrait also conveys this!
When I asked Rahul to come and pose for me so that I could really grip his spirit and energy, he refused to look me in the eyes. He kept fidgeting every 10 seconds, that was the only time this happened with a subject and was a strange experience.
Rahul ended up doing quite a few movies and has remained a dependable actor. Though he is talented he has not yet reached the stardom which he dreamed of. Everything in the painting has a soft and smooth feel to it. This portrait was painted when I still used only oil paint so the colours are more subdued as well as serious. A gentle touch of back light touches the tips of the hair which represents stage lights.
My mother, who is a tapestry weaver, really liked this painting. She made a beautiful tapestry based on it that is just the same size as the original. It is included here.