What can YOU say in six sentences?
Today was her last sitting for Mr Allan Ramsay to put the finishing touches to the portrait; Jean, helped by Susannah her maid, dressed carefully in her favourite blue, Chinese silk dress then adjusted the exquisite lace shawl that her parents, General James Abercromby and his wife Mary, had brought back for her from Brussels when on their tour of the continent.
While Susannah fastened the beautiful pearl choker around her mistress’s elegant neck, Jean’s mind drifted back to the evening of her betrothal when Captain George Morison of Haddo, now her newly wedded husband, had placed the necklace around her neck whist proclaiming his undying love. As she remembered the way that the touch of his fingers caressing her skin had sent shivers down her spine, she blushed and had to reach for her bowl of powder which would re-establish the pale complexion that was so fashionable at the time.
She made her way to the library to take up her position, rejoicing that this seventh sitting would be the last; Mr Ramsay had been chosen for the commission as he was well respected for his female portraiture. But Jean had found the experience rather tedious and had often found her mind wandering as the painting progressed; with her vivid imagination, she dreamt that, one day, it may well be possible that there would be a means in which a portrait could be executed in the time that it would take to blink an eye. This was such a ridiculous notion that it took Jean Abercromby, Mrs Morison of Haddo, every effort not to burst into laughter.