Executed rapidly in pastel, the forms in this portrait of Degasâ€™s artist friend, Count Ludovic Lepic, are defined with expressive freedom and emotional force. The heads of both the dog and its master are summarily indicated by the dark lines that define shoulder, mouths, eyes, and ears, and by the white areas that highlight the planes of Lepicâ€™s face and forehead. The Belgian Griffonâ€™s mouth is turned upward, as though smiling, but Lepicâ€™s expression is weary and wistful; his eyes suggest suffering. A penetrating vision of life coming to its inevitable close, the pastel is one of Degasâ€™s most compassionate portraits. About a month after he completed it, his childhood friend died at age 50.