Last week's Daily Paintworks Challenge (which is still active, if you want to participate) was to paint in the style of an artist you admire. The first hurdle was choosing which of the many painters I admire to emulate; my friend Mike suggested Cezanne, whom I hadn't thought of and realized immediately was perfect.
I started looking through my Cezanne books at still lifes; when I first began painting and drawing again after graduate school and before I started taking any classes, I drew and painted many apples on white cloths.
But I kept being drawn to the many portraits of Madame Cezanne: her solidity and placid expression.
The woman in these paintings isn't Hortense, but I borrowed the general pose, the hands, the skirt, and the wallpaper from Cezanne.