Picasso portrays Dora Maar majestically seated in an armchair, smiling and resting her head on her long-fingered hand. Her face is shown in a combined frontal and profile view, with a both a red eye and a green eye facing different directions. Every possible pictorial representation that Picasso could think of has been brought into play to fully exemplify Dora Maar and who she was: her physical characteristics, her temperament, and the painter's vision of her. The fingernails painted with red polish, the long, graceful hands, the pose, the black hair, the large, dark and staring eyes, the round, willful chin, and the black, embroidered and laced corsage are all key attributes of the woman within Picasso’s eyes. Her expression is pleasant but distant; yet her eyes sparkle with life and intelligence. Pointed forms of the corsage and fingers suggest elegance and distinction, while the cross-structures of the chair, the squared pattern of the skirt, and the vertical and horizontal stripes of the background allude to a prison or convent cell, making it seem as if Dora Maar was trapped; stuck in a narrow, cruel mental space.