2564. As you know, the master painted in the faces after the areas surrounding the faces had been painted in first by the apprentices. Before the master began to execute his portrait heads, the painting had an odd appearance. The closest thing I can think of would be to compare it to one of those flat stand-up cut out figures with just a hole for a face that you see at fairs where you can be photographed so as to look like Queen Mary, or Lincoln.
2565. So, the part of the painting soon to be a face was a
pure white patch with only a few indented lines indicating where the
features would be, having been transferred there from the drawing.
2566. When Faldoni went back to his cell in the
evening and began to paint one of his faces on his wall, he had just
exactly the opposite situation to contend with. He invariably painted
the face to completion first, and only after it was done did he turn his
attention to the surrounding areas, and paint them in almost as an
afterthought, so as to complete the rectangle.
2567. So, the procedure was reversed, for the master the background was painted first, and the face came after, and for Faldoni the face was painted first, and the background came after.