What is a Portrait?

A good portrait visually tells the story of a person's journey through life.

My view is that portraits carved in wood tend to bring the subject who is being portrayed, much closer to us.  Portraits in stone tend to maintain a respectful distance between the audience and the person being portrayed.

For me, modelled portraits  capture a moment in time because of their fluidity and the rapid nature of applying the material under the sculptor's deft touch.

All being told, a portrait is a very personal record of a person's essence and time and because of this I would need to glean some understanding of the person though meetings, photos and usually a couple of sittings.

Arab portrait

Arab Money Lender

Carved from pear wood.  Natural untreated chisel finish.  Designed to sit at a window looking at the passersby.

Approximately 18 inches high.

FOR SALE: £6,350

Stages in clay modelling from life.

Subject - Dwight (filmmaker)

Plaster cast and carving in lime stone


Modelled Portraits

Prices for portraits depend on the size, how much of the body is modelled in addition, the type of mounting, the type of patination, the type of mould and the material they are cast in.  Once they are modelled, more than one copy can be made during casting.

To give an example:

A price for a half size bust cast in basic plaster or cement resin start from £355 for one.

Full size busts start from £550

Subsequent copies made will have a significantly reduced price.

Carved Portraits

Will cost much more.  Depending on the material, size, amount of detail and finishing, a carved portrait will start at £1150 for half life size and 3000 for full size.  All subjects of carved portraits will have to be roughly modelled and sketched first.

A clay model was made, which was then cast in plaster ready to be carved in lime stone.


A lady of mixed Colombian and Italian descent.

Final casting in plaster.

Clour and patination can be added if desired.

Sarah  Liptrot

Half size portrait in terracota wax