Painting Photographic Portraits of the Soul

Nov 6, 2009Inspiring

I just got off the phone with Winifred Whitfield interviewing her for and my coaching site and feel compelled to share her work here too. Winifred only took her first photography course in 2000, but quickly developed her own style and unique way of working. She embraced traditional studio skills – directing the model, backdrops, props and posing – at a time when most photographers were moving away from the studio towards reportage and spontaneous, ‘natural’ shots; and also she dived right into learning to use the latest digital toolkits – Photoshop and Painter – to their full creative capacity, not just a little bit of retouching here and there.

She offers her clients, who are mainly women, the opportunity to create with her a portrait of themselves, as she says; “No matter your age or your weight, I will create a beautiful and flattering portrait of you as you would like to be seen and remembered.”


On her website, subtitled Seeing the Soul, you’ll see that the styles and main categories – Hollywood Vintage, Alluring, Pin-Up, Power, Maternity etc. – bring out a side in her subjects that you sense really needed to be let out. Transforming ordinary, often camera-shy women into beautiful icons, Winifred creates more than just a picture or an object to hang on the wall; the resulting portraits are emotional and dramatic, but also intensely honest and intimate. Imagine looking at an image of yourself at your most glamourous, your most lovely (and adored), or your most confident and empowered?

Every day.

What would that do for your sense of self on a day-to-day basis?

Altering that? Now that’s a real art in itself.