This portrait is somewhat out of sequence in relation to the recent paintings. It’s from one of my sketchbooks and I rattled it off in about twenty minutes one evening in early December 2011. It was one of those sketches that simply drew itself; every line seemed right and the whole thing was effortless – to use a contemporary idiom, I was in the zone. It’s weird the way it sometimes happens and to this day I’ve not been able to reliably get myself into the zone at will, which can be infuriating on those occasions when things simply do not go well and everything seems difficult. Strange, strange processes at work. Until today, I hadn’t seen this sketch from the time I initially drew it, and looking at it again I really like it. If only I could turn it on at will.