Paul Emsley, the 75-year-old British artist who painted Kate Middleton to look like one of his contemporaries for her first official portrait, is super offended by the criticism he received after the painting was unveiled at the National Portrait Gallery earlier this month. He described the poor reviews of his work as a "circus," a "witch hunt," and "destructive" to him, his wife, and his daughters. OK, Paul, that's enough. Get a grip. Jeez.
But even though much of the feedback about this particular work of his was negative, Emsley is resolute in his decision to make the Duchess of Cambridge look like a strict but handsome 62-year-old stepmother.
At first the attacks were so vicious that there was a point where I myself doubted that the portrait of the duchess was any good. But now I've had time to reflect, I am still happy with it and am getting on with my life. There is nothing I would have changed.
And if people don't like it, it's not his fault.
"I believe half the problem is the portrait doesn't photograph well and I would encourage people to go and see it [in person]," he told Hello magazine, despite the fact that the first of the negative commentary about the portrait came from art critics who attended the unveiling—in person.
Ultimately, Emsley has adopted a "haters gonna hate" mentality about the whole thing, and has returned to his studio to "get on with it."