A portrait is an artistic representation of a person in which the face and facial expressions take centre stage. Portrait drawing is a genre of art in which the intention is to depict the likeness, personality and even the mood of the person.
Formal portraits have been commissioned by wealthy people throughout history. Art museums that have a historical collection are sure to have many portraits hanging on their walls. Over time, however, it became increasingly common for middle-class people also to commission portraits of their families and colleagues. Today, portraits are still commissioned by governments, corporations, groups and individuals.
Artists who specialise in portraits may commission their work for public and private individuals or they may be inspired by admiration or affection for the subject. Portraits often serve as mementos and are therefore a very good choice for keepsakes or gifts.