Her Royal Highness The Countess of Wessex

Oil on canvas, 38 x 28 inches, 2006

HRH Sophie, the Countess of Wessex is the Honorary Colonel-in-Chief of Queen Alexandra’s Royal Army Nursing Corps. Once commissioned by the Corps, I paid a visit to her home, Bagshot Park, to discuss what she should wear for the portrait.

We spent a very interesting afternoon taking dresses from her wardrobe to decide on something appropriate. Her favourite was a heavily embroidered dress and jacket by Shanghai Tang. In reality, it was a hugely complicated pattern, but as ever, rising to the challenge, I hope I did the beautiful outfit justice. Her Royal Highness paid me the very great honour of unveiling the portrait at a grand reception at Sandhurst, where the painting now hangs.