Portraiture dates back to ancient Egypt, where it flourished from about 5,000 years ago. Before the advent of photography, a painted, sculpted, or drawn portrait was the only way to record the appearance of someone. But portraits have always been more than just a record; they have been used to show the power, importance, virtue, beauty, wealth, taste, learning or other qualities of the sitter.
Among leading modern artists portrait painting commissions became increasingly rare, and artists such as Gustave Klimt, Pablo Picasso, Paul Gauguin and Lucien Freud painted their friends and lovers in whatever way they pleased.
.A portrait is a representation of a particular person, whereas a self-portrait, is a portrait of the artist by the artist.