“Simone consented to pose. She is too active to sit still for hours, so we made a deal. I would set the timer for forty-five minutes and then she could leave. During the many sessions with her, when the timer rang, she was off as though its ding were the starting shot in a race.
She sat in the easy chair, a cup of tea in her hand, facing the new morning sun. I felt that there was something archetypal there. There was a faraway look in her eye, a hint of a bright beginning. Sitting there she was connected with the power of the sun, the giver of light, of understanding.
I used the bookcase and cabinet on either side as dark columns to frame the light-filled window, careful to keep the width and height of each different, asymmetrical. The table, chair, and footstool form a triangle in space and establish the plane of the floor. Objects are dotted around to draw your eye from near to far.
I enjoyed rendering the deep darkness of the bookshelf with its barely visible objects on its shelves as much as I did the light-filled street with the long rays of the early sun making neat rows on the lawns and sidewalk. And I enjoyed the contrasts of high and low key and the patterns of tone on the floor, the table, the chair, and Simone, all caught in the light. This drawing, I thought, was a success. ”