Kate Middleton Portrait Artist Responds to "Vicious" Criticism

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Kate Middleton's portrait painter is speaking out in defense of his highly criticized, much maligned and often memed illustration of the Duchess of Cambridge.

Kate Middleton Portrait

After receiving less-than-glowing reviews (to put it mildly), Paul Emsley revealed to Hello! that he and his family were upset by some of the negative feedback.

Considering the Kate Middleton portrait was the biggest commission of his career, "I'd be inhuman if I said it didn't affect me," the award-winning artist said.

"When you take on commissions like this, it is hazardous and you absolutely expect a bit of flak, but I expected nothing like the criticism I have received."

"I didn't expect it to go to the levels it did."

While Kate told reporters she thought the painting was just "brilliant," more than a few media outlets and fans of the royals were far less glowing.

The near universal reaction was that it made the gorgeous Duchess look older and duller than her 31 years; even more unflattering, hilarious memes followed.

After spending four months on it, Emsley likened the disparagement his work received to a "witch hunt" and "circus" that took an emotional toll on his family.

"At first the attacks were so personal and vicious that there was a point where I doubted that the portrait of the duchess was any good," he confesses.

However, "now I've had time to reflect on it, I am still happy with it and am getting on with my life. There is nothing I would have changed," he said.

The 65-year-old painter suggested that perhaps the portrait doesn't photograph well ... which would be ironic in that there are like no bad Kate Middleton pics.

What do you think of the Kate Middleton portrait?


Good grief. It's a picture. If some don't like it, others will. Maybe he will be comissioned to do another of her. More off the wall is how the press insists on using her maiden name. That just isn't one. What is that all about?


Well, this is my opinion and I am not a painter either, I guess it's the way the painter painted her face, the interpretation of her eyes ( eye make up ) the cast under her eyes, and the coloring of her complexion and the color of her cheeks and lips too. Maybe the painter should have changed the background color with something lighter. It's the interpretation of the gaze from her eyes and the casting shadows under her eyes that make her look mature than her real age. It's too bad but I hope that award winning painter should reconsider it. Mistakes happen and we can learn from them for the better.


I'm Sorry but this is a portrait of A MUCH OLDER WOMAN Kate is a YOUNG woman maybe this is her in her 40s


The portrait is great she's a stunning lady. The only thing I would have changed would be her wearing something a bit lighter in color.


agree, I can't paint at all but this is simple "Not Done".

James stevens

she also looks HIGH around the eyes like she just smoked a hootie, this is what I see

James stevens

if you can't take the heat get out of the kitchen, people carry their feelings on their shoulders these days, so we can't tell the truth, but spare people's feelings, this world is becoming politically incorrect

James stevens

painting should be flattering, this makes her look old, she looks at least 45 in that photo, how old is she, all the wrinkles under the eyes, and around the mouth, just not a true portrait, maybe when she is 45 or 50


the pic is jus ordinary and dull. but i duno what they expected tho


She is a beautiful girl and this picture is not beautiful........


Kate Middleton Biography

Royally Pretty Girl
A celebrity gossip mainstay since at least 2006, Kate Middleton is Prince William's lady friend. These two dated off and on for many... More »
Reading, England
Full Name
Kate Middleton