Among many other things, that Wikipedia entry mentions: "He was also admired as a portrait painter. His portraits were of the most important men and women of the day, intended to form a 'House of Fame'. In his portraits Watts sought to create a tension between disciplined stability and the power of action. He was also notable for emphasising the signs of strain and wear on his sitter's faces. Of his British subjects many are now in the collection of the National Portrait Gallery..."
Today's post presents several of those portraits from 1864 through 1871, a period when many of them were painted.
Shown are mostly art- and culture-related personalities, subjects apparently dear to Watts' heart, as he was part of that tribe. Artistically, they are accurate from a representational standpoint. They are rather dark, brownish -- an appearance that was fashionable in late-1800s Britain, as a visitor to London's National Portray Gallery will notice.
Garibaldi was a political figure thanks to his effort to unity Italy. But that also made him a figure of popular culture -- there's even a mountain named after him in far-off British Columbia.
Watts was briefly married to this famous actress. She ran out on him.
The famous nurse of the Crimean War.
Arts and Crafts movement personality.