Was there a recognizable court style that represented the royal façade in the Qing court? Most scholars of the Qing court use the terms “Court Style (yuan ti)”or “Academic style (huayuan fengge)” without specifying what exactly they refer to, or when and how this standard style, if it ever existed, formed. These basic questions have never been comprehensively answered. This paper intends to focus on the works and life of Jiang Tingxi, one of the high officials and consultants closest to Emperor Kangxi, and argues that the eclectic style combining Chinese and European techniques taken as representative of the high Qing court style was actually founded during the reign of Kangxi, and much influenced by Emperor Kangxi’s expectations regarding the functions of “paintings” or “images.” This paper goes beyond connoisseurship studies and considers works ascribed to Jiang, yet done by different hands, as products the team working in Jiang’s workshop. By juxtaposing Jiang’s career with these works done in different styles, this paper reconstructs the identities of the Jiang’s team members. The paper also finds that under Kangxi, the operation and practices of the royal “painting academy” depended heavily on the contributions of the high officials’ personal staff. This royal court style was established through close interactions between the emperor and his favored high officials, and carried out not necessarily by official court painters, but by the high officials’ personal team. Despite of the fact that the royal court style was probably not consciously asserted in the Kangxi reign, as was the case during Qianlong’s reign, by focusing on Jiang Tingxi and his team, this paper hopes to shed light on its development in the nascent period and explore how this laid the foundations for the future standard court style of the royal façade in the high Qing period.