A Face Illuminedby Edward Payson Roe
Although the sun was approaching the horizon, its slanting rays found a young artist still bending over his easel. That his shoulders are broad is apparent at a glance; that upon them is placed a shapely head, well thatched with crisp black hair, is also seen at once; that the head is not an empty one is proved by the picture on the easel, which is sufficiently advanced to show correct and spirited drawing. A brain that can direct the hand how to do one thing well, is like a general who has occupied a strategic point which will give him the victory if he follows up his advantage.
A knock at the door is not answered at once by the intent and preoccupied artist, but its sharp and impatient repetition secures the rather reluctant invitation,
"Come in," and even as he spoke he bent forward to give another stroke.
"Six o'clock, and working still!" cried the intruder. "You will keep the paint market active, if you achieve nothing else as an artist."
"Heigho! Ik, is that you?" said he of the palette, good-naturedly; and rising slowly he gave a lingering look at his work, then turned and greeted his friend with the quiet cordiality of long and familiar acquaintance. "What a marplot you are with your idle ways!" he added. "Sit down here and make yourself useful for once by doing nothing nothing for ten minutes. I am in just the mood and have just the light for a bit of work which perhaps I can never do as well again," and the artist returned promptly to his picture.
In greeting his friend he had revealed that he was above middle height, that he had full black eyes that were not only good for seeing, but could also, if he chose, give great emphasis to his words, and at times be even more expressive. A thick mustache covered his lip, but the rest of his face was cleanly shaven, and was strong and decided in its outlines rather than handsome.
"They say a woman's work is never done," remarked Ik Stanton, dropping into the easiest chair in the studio, "and for this reason, were there no other, your muse is evidently of the feminine persuasion. I also admit that she is a lady of great antiquity. Indeed I would place her nearer to the time when 'Adam delved and Eve span' than to the classic age."
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- 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.41(d)
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