Eric Vanasse

Gallery/Studio: 301 Saint-Denis
Saint-Lambert, Quebec
(10 minutes from downtown Montreal )
(514) 917-7160

Visit the Vanasse Gallery

a portrait

When doing a portrait painting, every stroke of the brush that I apply is done with the intent to capture not only the likeness but also a mood specific to the sitter's personality. It is by seeking qualities of presence, light and harmony in my works that I can best pay tribute to the person that I paint.

I usually start a portrait by doing a monochromatic (grisaille) under-painting to work out the composition, get the likeness, refine the drawing and get a strong tonal relationship. When this foundation is solid, I then apply my colors over the under painting in a wet on wet approach that allows the beauty of the paint to shine with all of its subtleties. This takes much longer than tracing contours and filling in the colors but the end result is more poetic and allows for a better emotional connection to the painting.

Painting from life by posing for one or multiple sessions of three hours can be a memorable experience for the sitter and always give a truer sense of form, color and mood to render for the artist. Since a finished portrait takes me between 30 and 40 hours, it is often difficult to arrange so many sessions, therefore, I usually work from photographs but I prefer to take the reference photos myself whenever possible. To get a better feeling of the sitter's personality multiple pictures are always required.

What to budget?

The price is dependent on the complexity of the subject and to a lesser extent on the size of the painting. The price lists here are for paintings life-size or near life-size with a uniform or abstract background.

Head and shoulders
Prices are for one person. Add $400 per additional person for groups.

16 x 12 in
18 x 14 in 20 x 16 in
$750 $800 $900

Half figure, seated or standing showing hands
Prices are for one person. Add $600 per additional person for groups.

16 x 12 in 18 x 14 in 20 x 16 in
$1000 $1100 $1200

Full figure
From $1500. Minimum size: 48 in x 30 in

Detailed exterior background, add $200

Detailed interior background, add $300

Taxes additional. Framing and shipping are optional extras at cost.

I invite you to call or email me for any questions.


The classical methods of drawing and painting are no longer taught in almost all Canadian superior art schools so I gained my knowledge and skills by studying rigorously under American and European classically trained artists who founded two schools dedicated to the classical traditions, l'Atelier de Brésoles and the Bohemiarte School.

The rest of my education was mostly self-taught by studying the works of masters from the renaissance to today. This path allowed me to merge the rich traditions of the past, the scientific knowledge of the last decades and a contemporary spontaneity that gives a breath of life to paintings.

In addition to my practical art training, I gained an extensive knowledge and unique perspective in art by doing a university major in Art History and by working for 15 years in museums, the last 10 of which I spent at the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts where I was Head of Archives and Collection Management.

I have since dedicated myself to the delightful pursuit of beauty that every canvas presents to me.