Melinda was my very great friend, and after she died, her Mother approached me to sculpt a portrait of her.
Initially I said no. Ordinarily, I spend a lot of time with my subject, getting to know them and taking detailed measurements, and ideally they sit for me while I’m sculpting. But amongst many other things, Melinda was a superb professional photographer and artist who often used herself as a model, so I was lucky enough to have hundreds of photographs to work from. When I began I was inspired by a portrait of Melinda’s Mother which she sat for aged 18. I was pleased with the likeness, but I hadn’t caught Melinda’s spirit, so I started again. The process was incredibly cathartic, being surrounded by so many images of my friend who I missed so much. Making a portrait is a conversation between sitter and sculptor and it was a great privilege to have this opportunity to say a final goodbye in this way.