(The photo was taken about 5 or 10 minutes after completion, which explains why the head tilt varies from the portrait).
This was my first full-length profile portrait. It was done completely freehand, without any type of drawing or other marking of the figure before snipping with the scissors. The sitting (or standing) took about 10 or 15 minutes, which is far longer than the normal 2-5-minute sitting of just a head or hatted portrait. I was very nervous while cutting it, knowing that I was caring for the comfort of a woman standing so still, and wanting to create the best portrait for my first time doing a full-length.
Even one of the most famous silhouettes in the history of the art, Augustin Edouart (1789-1861) drew a little before his full-length scissor-snipped portraits.
It is very difficult to create freehand silhouettes: there is only the eye (again: freehand means “no drawing or machine” in any way) to create the proper perspective and proportion, especially to fit on the paper at hand. Creating a freehand full length portrait means that without drawing, it is difficult to estimate the size of each body element as well as the relation on the paper. Every snip is important! The challenge of the beautiful 18th-century hat creates an additional adventure in cutting freehand.
I look forward to creating and refining full-length profile “shade” portraits. This is a very rare portrait form.