Wales winger Shane Williams has switched from running in tries to posing for artist Andrew Vicari.
Following his two tries against Italy at the Millennium Stadium in the RBS 6 Nations Championship on Saturday he has been sitting for Port Talbot-born Vicari, who is now the world’s highest paid living artist thanks to his commissions from the Middle East.
The triptych of Williams is being donated by Vicari for the sportsman’s testimonial season by former club Neath and the Ospreys and it will be auctioned at one of several fundraising events.
Williams said: “I’ve been to a few sittings already and there are a few more to come. Although it sounds easy, it’s actually one of the most difficult things I’ve ever had to do.”
Vicari is best known for his massive oil paintings depicting the first Gulf War sold to the Saudi government for £150m, has a long association with Welsh rugby and the Millennium Stadium. As well as paintings on the dressing room walls, he has also produced portraits of many other players.
Vicari said: “I’ve painted and drawn great rugby players before – Terry Davies, Clem Thomas, Cliff Morgan and Carwyn James – and I’d have to say that Shane is right up there with the best of them.”