For this job the client wanted something more compelling than the usual head and shoulders portrait. An active group, or ensemble, as it were. I found some nice reference in a book of Degas’ sketches, a picture of Rodin which I could rotate a little bit in my imagination, and used Manet’s most iconic painting, ‘Olympia,’ as a backdrop to give it a proper- or perhaps slightly improper- environment. Lastly, after I was done with the inked line, I added flat areas of black for which I have no formula. I just look for a pleasing balance.