Rolf Harris' brush with the queen
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LONDON, England -- Australian TV entertainer Rolf Harris has unveiled his portrait of Queen Elizabeth II to mark the British monarch's 80th birthday next year.
Harris was filmed painting the queen throughout the sittings for a BBC documentary "The Queen By Rolf."
It was the first time the whole process of creating one of the royal portraits has been recorded in this way.
In the painting, unveiled Monday at Buckingham Palace, the queen, smiling broadly, rests her hands in her lap as she sits at Buckingham Palace.
She is wearing a three-stranded pearl necklace and a brooch specially made for her to mark her late mother's 100th birthday.
Harris admitted using his famous catchphrase when chatting to his subject during the sittings. He said: "I think I said somebody's bound to ask me to say 'can you tell what it is yet?'
"So I did and we had a bit of a laugh about that," according to the Press Association.
The artist revealed it was stressful trying to get the likeness right in the 100 centimeter by 50 centimeter (40-inch by 20-inch) oil on canvas portrait.
He likened his first sketches to resembling a "pork butcher from Norwich." Harris said: "It was a bit stressful when I couldn't get the likeness right.
"And the first rough one that I did was exactly that, just a rough idea where the eyes were and the mouth.
"It sort of looked like a pork butcher from Norwich. It didn't look anything like the queen at all."
He added: "I had a problem with the teeth, it looked as if the teeth were sitting on the bottom lip. I had to muck about with those teeth over and over again."
Harris chose the bright green outfit from a rail of the queen's clothes, adding that he wanted her to wear something colorful.
He added as he unveiled the image: "I'm thrilled to bits with that. I feel it's a good likeness and shows a relaxation which I haven't seen in many official portraits."
Rachel Campbell-Johnson, The Times art critic, said the picture was technically "adequate," but lacked emotional depth.
"It's a very warm picture of the nation's favorite granny -- you can almost see the corgis about to hop onto her knee," she said.
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