New King Charles Portrait Severely Divides the Internet—and I Can Clearly See Why

Which side are you on?

King Charles Portrait Unveiling CAT2
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After King Charles uploaded a video of himself unveiling his fiery new portrait on the royal family’s Instagram pageroyally obsessed fans rushed to the comments section to share their thoughts—and boy, were there a lot of them. 

The striking piece of artwork (which is the royal’s first official portrait since being crowned as king at last year’s coronation ceremony) shows the 75-year-old monarch posing in a Welsh Guards uniform while fully engulfed in a fierce red background. 

Many royal admirers sounded off in the comments section of the post, with one person writing an honest critique that read, “I would have loved this if it was any other color than red. He really captured the essence of him in the face, but the harshness of the red doesn’t match the softness of his expression.” Another Instagram user chimed in and said, “Without sounding rude, this is the worst royal portrait I’ve ever seen.” 

While some royal enthusiasts disliked the portrait, there were many who admired the piece, which was painted by U.K. artist Jonathan Yeo. One user commented, “This man is a fine artist with a certain style. If you look at the rest of his work, you will see and understand. All of you can only see the color red and cannot get past it in the most rudimentary way, which is so sad. It’s beautiful as is all this artist’s work.”

New King Charles Portrait Reveal CAT

While I will say that the red background is a bit extreme, I was curious to hear the painter’s reason for this artistic choice. And thankfully, the 53-year-old artist did share some insight in a recent interview with Hello! Magazine

Yeo, who also attended the unveiling on Tuesday, shared his creative process for the painting. When asked about the use of the red hue, he explained, “The red was inspired by the Welsh Guards, but I wanted the painting to be a little more contemporary and not get in the way of seeing the face and the personality.”

Jonathan Yeo King Charles Portrait CAT
Aaron Chown-WPA Pool/Getty Images

Yeo further explained, “The color was an early experiment and then I sketched it out and worked on the face, and the face and background worked so well. I just then worked on making sure nothing else interfered with the balance. It was a nice mix of the traditional and the contemporary.”

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Assistant Editor, News And Entertainment

Karelle McKay is the Assistant Editor of News and Entertainment at PureWow. Before she started writing about all things pop culture, she was a literal couch potato who loved...