An ?informal? portrait that last week scooped £12,000 was posed after the subject initially refused to give permission, it has emerged.

Entitled ?Joe? the picture scooped top spot in the National Portrait Gallery?s Photographic Portrait Prize. It was entered by Richard Boll who said it was part of a series of ?very informal, quickly shot? portraits of passers-by.

However, speaking afterwards he admitted: ?It was a quick encounter, four minutes, most of which was spent persuading him to pose.?

A spokesman for the organisers said: ?After eventually agreeing to the photograph, Joe left Richard Boll and both went their separate ways.?

Boll shot the picture outside his flat in Brighton, East Sussex, using a Canon EOS-1Ds Mark II.

Second place went to German-born Anna Bauer and in third was Kiran Master from London.

Meanwhile, 24-year-old Erin Kornfield from the United States won the £5,000 Deloitte Commission prize for the best portrait by a photographer aged 25 or under.

The Photographic Portrait Prize exhibition runs until 18 February 2007 at the National Portrait Gallery, St Martin?s Place, London WC2H OHE. For details call 020 7306 0055.

Picture credit: Richard Boll