The Value of Painted Portraits


There are lots of organizations out there that have portraits painted, but this [Saddle and Sirloin Club] is one of the few in the country that has portraits painted as a part of their regular tradition for honoring the best and finest of their people.

Not everyone understands this, or the importance of portraits, or, in fact, the importance of tradition. Really we could just put our most honored people on a list that documents their contributions and we could put that up online with a visual documentation from a camera. That would certainly be efficient and economical.

Portrait of Dr. Bob Totosek, Head of Animal Science Dept., School of Agriculture, Oklahoma State University

Portrait of Dr. Bob Totosek, Head of Animal Science Dept., School of Agriculture, Oklahoma State University

But a portrait, hand painted with brushes and colors mixed in the oil of flax seed, as portraits were centuries ago, and the thoughtful ritual of one’s peers unveiling that portrait, speaks of the unbroken connection that exists between people of outstanding ability and character from the past, with those of a similar kind in the present and those yet to come in the future.

That gives us a sense of timelessness I think, a kind of reassurance that something, our standards maybe, is not altered by the passing of time.

—Richard Halstead, from November 11, 2012 Speech at the Saddle and Sirloin Club

Click on this link to be taken to the Saddle and Sirloin Club website where you can obtain a PDF of the Saddle and Sirloin Portrait Catalog.

News About Richard Halstead’s Portrait of Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels

Governor Mitch Daniels (left) and Richard Halstead (right) flank Mr. Halstead's official portrait of the governor at the October 16, 2012 unveiling.

At a Statehouse ceremony on October 16, 2012, Richard Halstead’s portrait of Governor Mitch Daniels was officially unveiled. For details about the unveiling, the governor, and the portrait artist, click on the links below. (Yes, there are quite a few, but they are all worth checking out because each article offers something unique about the occasion—whether that’s information about inside jokes, additional images, quotes from Mr. Halstead’s speech, or further insights into the portrait painting process in the artist’s own words.)

“Daniels’ Portrait Unveiled At Statehouse” can be read at


“Meet the Man Behind Governor Daniels’ Portrait”
can be read—and heard—at

© Daniel Axler. Courtesy of Daniel Axler.

“Portrait means Gov. Daniels now belongs to the ages” can be found at

“Gov Daniels Portrait Unveiled” is at

“Daniels’ Portrait Shows Indiana Governor at Work” can be found at,0,6177478.story