Leanna Stella (born 1976, based in Woodbridge, UK) left academic school early to attend Fine Arts College, London then studied jewellery design at Central St Martins, London (1994-96), make-up design at Greasepaint, London (1997) and painting at Hungry Creek, Puhoi, New Zealand (2004).

Leanna is a portrait painter mainly of people (the occasional pet) sometimes straying to still-life such as a feather or leaf. Working in water-based oils on board or canvas allows her to work with a thin transparent layer, akin to watercolours then building up more layers to add depth and strength of colour.

She works in a directly representational figurative way, the most focal, detailed point of the portrait is on the sitter’s eyes, channeling their character and beauty, then working outwards to looser more fluid brushstrokes in the clothing and hair.

Leanna’s subjects are posed traditionally and seated facing a light source allowing her to work with the light and shade which helps to define features; shape and contour. Her figures are placed on plain backgrounds, pushing their image to the fore and creating a contemporary feel to the portrait. 

The commissioning process begins with photographing the subjects, wearing their choice of clothes, special jewellery or other cherished items as they wish to have captured for generations to come. This usually takes place at Leanna's studio in Old Jet, Bentwaters although she can travel if necessary.

Depending on concurrent commissions work can take between 4-8 months. Artworks can be made in a variety of scales to suit price points, starting at £250 for an A4 size portrait on board. Leanna can advise on, and organise framing if required.

If you’d like to discuss any aspect of commissioning please use the contact page.