Rossin goes by a single name only. Like Madonna. And Cher. Or Michelangelo.
The 45-year-old Atlanta portrait artist isn’t as famous as those icons. But he did get a few minutes in the spotlight of the “Housewives of Atlanta” last Thursday when he did a monstrous 6 foot by 5 foot painting of Sheree Whitfield’s face.
He did that painting for free for the publicity. Normal fee is about $35,000. A smaller, more traditional portrait starts at a mere $18,000. He does 30 to 40 a year. That’s not bad money.
Rossin was happy the way he was edited. “The editors didn’t do much,” he said. “It was very real.”
His publicist helped reach out to Sheree and the show producers. He embraced the challenge and truly liked Sheree, as he burbled quite a bit on the show itself.
“She’s way much more interesting than people see her,” he said. “She has a depth and a very kind, genuine personality she doesn’t show all the time given the dynamics of the show. She was very humble and quiet and sensitive and delicate.”
Yes, that portrait screams “humble,” eh? (It actually captures the softer side of Sheree, as noted, but where will she put it? Over her fireplace mantle? In the entrance foyer? Maybe as a billboard outside on her lawn?)
He has done a bigger single portrait – seven feet by five feet. The subject: Jesus Christ. So we do know at least one person bigger than Sheree!
The Bulgarian born artist says he’s done more than 350 portraits in his life. He has travelled all over the world doing work but came to Atlanta eight years ago.
He has gotten many inquiries and Web hits since the show, of course. Although he already has a six-month backlog of orders, he has no regrets about doing the show. “I enjoyed it tremendously,” he said. “We love the media.”
Rossin’s next project is going to Africa and doing portraits of folks such as Nelson Mandela. Locally, he has done Louis Sullivan’s wife. He is also in plans to do a portrait of Andrew Young, former Atlanta Mayor, Congressman and U.N. Ambassador.
The next “Real Housewives” is on Bravo at 10 p.m. Thurssday. It’s episode No. 10 of 12 in season two and will feature a party introducing Kim’s single “Tardy for the Party.” Good guess that a certain NeNe will be at home griping about it.