The portraits in the Harry Potter world - they talk, they act. Are they reflections of the person whom they portray, or are they, at least potentially, independent? Do they have free will? Do they, therefore have a soul?
We know that the Fat Lady could be afraid (3rd book) and Sir Cadogan could show courage, we know that Phineas Nigellus could like or dislike people, spy and whatnot. All of this seems to imply a measure of self-awareness.
What I'm curious about is, do artist in the HP universe perform an act of true creation, when painting a portrait? I am given to understand that Christianity only allows God to give things souls (Tolkien struggled with orcs, Morgoth's creations, possessing Free Will, and eventually made their origin to be tortured elves, making the Free Will thus come from Ilúvatar). Considering Rowling is also quite devout and has stated that Harry Potter is a deeply Christian work, I find this element curious.