Shutter and Sketch: London’s Only Bespoke Children’s Portrait Artist
After playing in the ocean, taking them to Northern Michigan in summertime, and showing them to the Brewster Building in Chicago where I first met their dad, the last thing on my bucket list to do with my kids is have them sit for portraits rendered by a fine artist.
It might be time for a new bucket list as I have just come across Shutter and Sketch, London’s only bespoke children’s portrait service.
I have been seeking proper artistic portraits of my children that can be framed and hung on my walls and then handed down through the generations. Not just giving testimony to how important these two little people are to my life; but creating a legacy for my family and turning our house into a home.
Having trolled the internet and looked warily at websites where you send away your photographs and a sketch is sent to you, or you head off to a studio somewhere; I got in touch with Shutter and Sketch as they were the only site I could find that offered to come to your London home and create bespoke, drawn portraits.
Lucy M Johnston, the London-based artist behind Shutter and Sketch, and I spoke on the phone; she explained to me her thorough process of having your child sit for the portrait. She basically occupies them for 20 minutes (a movie is a great help here) and just snaps away. She uses natural light, they do not have to pose, they just need to sit and get their expression that you love just right on camera and she will go home and sketch away. Lucy comes to you, she actually meets your child, sees a bit of their personality, their character and then goes off and creates a work of art. We decided to give it a try.
Lucy stopped by Sunday afternoon. We chatted while my son played and got used to having Lucy around (Lucy has two of her own, not only completely gets them, but they gravitate towards her) and then we turned on Captain Jack Sparrow and Lucy snapped away for 15 minutes. We looked at all the pictures immediately after; I was able to narrow it down to 1 very quickly as she perfectly captured his little boy gaze complete with eyelashes and chubby cheeks.
Lucy and I chatted as Lucan was warming to her, I learned that Lucy not only does bespoke, pencil drawn and photographic portraits for children and mums. Lucy has had her work shown in top London galleries and printed in periodicals including The Independent and The Times. In addition to her fine art paintings and instillations, Lucy specialises in bespoke portraits; not just children but also dramatic and creative photographic and drawn portraits of mums.
After 45 minutes of ringing bell, Lucy popped her camera back in the bag and was off to create a sketch. Watch this space and see what comes next…Tweet