The Queen has unveiled a brand new portrait of herself to celebrate being patron of the British Red Cross for the past six decades. The stunning illustration made its debut during a special ceremony at Windsor Castle.
Her Majesty, who is the longest serving patron of the charity, looked delighted as the new artwork by Henry Ward was revealed. This is the first time the Queen has been depicted in a portrait as the patron of the charity, which supports people in crisis in the UK and overseas.
The new portrait contains imagery which highlights the long-standing relationship between the Royal Family and Red Cross. It includes a bust of Henry Dunant, who founded the Red Cross, and the jewels of Queen Alexandra, who signed the petition for the granting of the British Red Cross Royal Charter before it was it was presented to her husband King Edward VII.
Henry Ward, who was born in Essex and now lives in Canada, was chosen by the Red Cross because of his support of the charity. The 45-year-old artist said: "As a long-standing supporter of the British Red Cross it has been an honour to paint The Queen to celebrate six decades' of her patronage.
"To portray Her Majesty as monarch and as patron of the Red Cross I have included imagery that relates to the history of the relationship. I have also been influenced by previous Royal portraitists such as Anthony van Dyck and Sir Joshua Reynolds."
Over the years, the Queen has supported the organization by visiting projects and offices and attending and hosting events, such as a Buckingham Palace garden party to celebrate 100 years of the British Red Cross.
Mike Adamson, Chief Executive of the British Red Cross, said: "We are hugely grateful to The Queen for sitting for this portrait and unveiling it today. It celebrates the strong relationship between the British Red Cross and the Royal Family and the history of our life-saving work."