Léon Spilliaert created several self portraits between 1907 and November 1908, which clearly highlight a change in composition method. In the first portraits dating back to 1907, such as this Silhouette of the Artist, Spilliaert depicts himself against a neutral background. The profound effect of this painting is due to the fact that we are looking at a figure against backlight, which creates a sharp contrast with the intense, summer sunlight outside. James Ensor and Edvard Munch employed a similar technique. The delicate lace curtain, wrought iron window decoration, console and mahogany chair, which form the décor, were probably added later. They are depicted in subtle colours using blue, red and green pencils. In later self portraits, Spilliaert used a mirror as a structural element.