About Us

Who We Are
The Portrait Society was formed in 1998 as a national 501(c)(3) non-profit organization to increase aesthetic and technical knowledge of the practicing portrait artist, artist's representatives, art students and the general public. Since then, we have grown to a membership of nearly 3,000. Each year we host hundreds of artists at educational events, workshops and conferences; mail thousands of copies of International Artist Magazine and our own The Art of the Portrait Journal to artists around the globe; provide support for emerging artists; and connect communities of artists through our State Ambassador Outreach Program. Many of our programs are available at a discounted or free rate to high school and college age students, as we strive to support and provide educational access to coming generations of artists.

We welcome you to join us at one of our many programs or as a member. Please feel free to email us at info@portraitsociety.org or call us toll-free at 1-877-772-4321 if you have any questions.

What We Offer
Conference - Each year the Portrait Society hosts The Art of the Portrait, a four day conference featuring a new progam schedule, rotating faculty and the popular Face-off group demonstration combine in a celebration of the traditions of fine art portraiture and figurative works. Attendees enjoy workshops, demonstrations, special guest lectures, discounted art materials, a Gala Banquet, portfolio critiques, book signings, trips to local museums and an exhibit of finalist artworks from the International Portrait Competition.

Portrait Academies - We also offer an annual Fall Portrait Academy Series. Portrait Academies are a series of intimate workshop weekends, offered by the Portrait Society since 2003. Attendees are able to observe professional artists demonstrating from live models. A full day life drawing and painting workshop allows participants to receive personal instruction and advice from seasoned professional artists. The weekend wraps up with opportunities for one-on-one portfolio critiques. High school and college students are offered scholarships to attend the demonstration.

Artist-to-Artist Critiques - Several years ago, the Portrait Society began to offer a formal, written critique service to its members.  We've just revamped and expanded the service to make it work more for you.  For a fee of $35, members are invited to electronically submit up to five artworks.  One of our acclaimed Faculty will personally call you to review and discuss your artwork, addressing issues from color and composition to anatomy and perspective.

State Ambassadors - In 2003, the State Ambassador Outreach Program was created as an effort to increase the personal contact between the Portrait Society of America's growing membership and the organization. Each State Ambassador serves as a resource for members and interested artists in their state or region, providing information about the Portrait Society, educational workshops and classes, mentors, museum exhibitions and all things related to the discipline of portraiture.  

Cecilia Beaux Forum - The Cecilia Beaux Forum was formed in 2005 as an open, dues-based membership committee of the Portrait Society of America dedicated to strengthening the role of women artists by providing programs and resources to enhance both the quality and the public's knowledge and appreciation of their work.  The Forum hosts several programs which increase public awareness of contemporary and historic women artists in fine figurative art and portraiture:
Offer a Mentoring Program to pair members with seasoned artists
Write and publish articles on women artists in major publications
Provide resources to help women artists find resources, literature and competitions

International Portrait Competition - The International Portrait Competition is open to all artists, members and non-members. The top fifteen finalists will be invited to exhibit their selected artwork at the prestigious The Art of the Portrait® Conference in Atlanta, Georgia. There, finalists' work will be judged by a panel of leaders in the field of traditional fine art portrait and figurative art. More than $60,000 in prizes will be distributed annually at The Art of the Portrait® Conference.

Members Only Competition - Each year the Members Only Competition varies the categories and subject matter. Participants are eligible to submit up to one entry per category of their work for inclusion in the Members Only Competition.  Top award winners will be chosen for each of the five categories.  First place winners selected from each category will receive a limited edition giclĂ©e painted and will be acknowledged in The Art of the Portrait section of International Artist Magazine and The Art of the Portrait Journal.

Other Competitions are sometimes organized by State Ambassadors or hosted in conjunction with other annual programming.

Media & Publications
The Art of the Portrait Journal -The Art of the Portrait Journal is a full-color, 20+ page quarterly publication which grew out of the Portrait Society's original 2-page, black and white member newsletter.  The Journal features a variety of content  from featured artist profiles to technical articles; news about exhibitions, openings and galleries; workshop and competition listings; reviews of events; a regular section featuring a woman artist, historic or contemporary, sponsored by the Cecilia Beaux Forum; and news on upcoming and recent unveilings. 

Complementary with Portrait Society membership.

International Artist Magazine -The Portrait Society contributes a 10-page section, titled "The Art of the Portrait," to each issue of International Artist Magazine.  Combining information highlighting events and artistic accomplishments,  articles on the personal and artistic devlopment of contemporary luminaries of the art world and step-by-step- illustrated demonstrations by acclaimed artists from around the globe, this section is beneficial to artists everywhere.
Complementary with Portrait Society membership.

American Art Collector - The Portrait Society recently began contributing to American Art Collector Magazine in what is to become a regular featured sction of the publication.  In this section, we highlight  news, information and trends in yesterday and today's figurative art world.
Available on magazine racks everywhere.
Conference Demo DVDs -Enjoy highlights of the conference in your own home or studio. Experience studio demonstrations by acclaimed artists, Judith Carducci, Daniel E. Greene, Robert Liberace, Michael Shane Neal and Mary Whyte. These artists have generously agreed to offer their presentations to the public as a fundraiser for the Portrait Society of America. 100% of proceeds from DVD sales go directly to the Portrait Society, helping us serve our highest public purpose in providing you access to quality educational resources and experiences.  $62.50 each 
Visit our website or call 1-877-772-4321 for information on the selection or purchasing.