I was an airline pilot for 10 years, and during that time, both of my children were born. While I managed to be home for every Christmas and every Birthday, I was absent from just about everything else — and I missed my family terribly.
It was during that season that I learned the art of portraiture. I wanted to chronicle their youth so I’d never forget.
Then one day, everything changed: I remember like it was yesterday. We were driving home from karate, and my daughter asked for her most recent portrait to be displayed on the wall in her room. Why, I asked?"Because when I have a bad day at school,” she said,“or if I'm not feeling very pretty, I can look at myself on the wall and know that I am beautiful and that you love me." Oh, my Goodness, I almost crashed the car! In that moment, I realized: I’m not creating portraits for my own enjoyment. I’m creating them for my children’s well being!
As I longed to spend more and more time with my family, I began to realize that my portraits could help others as well... J.Ridout, Portrait Artist was born.
Today, my clients realize the importance of their family and how quickly they change. My portraits constantly remind them who and what is most important to them. These portraits tell our children that no matter how busy and hectic our lives; no matter what happens: They belong to a family that loves then, and they are always welcome.
My last day as an airline pilot... November 17, 2014