A Day Dream, Robert A. Sieczkiewicz
Life looks extremely small through this window.
A long since at visit beyond the hill,
Was a fine day chasing a speedy doe,
Its total freedom gave me such a thrill.
My life is now without an adventure.
Need not be for it is not encumbered,
No ring on finger to make me secure,
Or of age so that my walk is lumbered.
Books fill my thoughts with intrepid desire,
Of unseen marvels of which God has made.
To travel becomes life’s multiplier,
A must do before in the ground I’m laid.
Love of beauty in life is what I seek,
Won’t be denied as a lady who’s meek.
Here we see Eastman Johnson purposely playing with light in his painting A Day Dream which he completed in 1877. Look at the shade. It is rolled up just enough to capture the beauty of expression on the model and not to give him the light he needs to paint great detail. It creates a somber feeling. She stares off into, only she knows where. Her expression matches the title of the painting perfectly.
It appears that she is not married and may be dreaming about a love situation, but I think not for she has a blank stare, not angry and not sad. Based on what I know about Johnson he focuses on freedom. Even after the Civil War a lot of his efforts where focused individual freedom.
I see the window as more than a source of light, it is both a symbol of opportunity and barrier. It may be winter outside and yet it is a big world out there for her to seek whatever she is seeking. It is a barrier for her because she is on the wrong side of the glass. It is her glass ceiling in that opportunities of economic and social freedoms were limited for women in the 19th century.