Moreover, the femme fatale is quite unquestionable as he portrays his themes through vivid colour schemes, beautiful light and symbolism, as we can see in his work of A street scene in Cairo. Despite the scenario of The unwelcome companion not being clear enough, JW Waterhouse had not familiarised himself with combining an appropriate setting with the gesture and pose of the figure. Later on, Waterhouse depicted the same lady in the same dress in his other artwork of Dancing Girl. The artist always had a liking to doing paintings of brutal or tragic stories and at the same time finding calm or beauty in them, as we can see in his artwork of The Unwelcome Companion.
This British artist loved to paint portraits that depicted stories that talked about heroic male characters. However, in most of his paintings, they always came out as background characters. Their faces will be partially covered or turned away. This was a technique that allowed John Waterhouse to focus mainly on his passion of drawing portraits of beautiful heroines while at the same time showing how a viewer needs to interpret the woman in front of their eyes. The painter creates luminous porcelain skin when drawing women portraits as a way of making them look ethereal, pure and innocent, as we can see in The unwelcome companion. This skin tone was with no doubt fashionable and seen to be the pinnacle of beauty. The light skin was always in contrast with the titian hair and dark eyes.
When it comes to the background of his portraits, he often created equal detail just as he does in the foreground and this was complemented by use of colour throughout his painting. He often used faint colours in the background so that viewers cannot be distracted from the main scene. At the same time, the faint colours he used were to reflect the mood and feel of the artwork. The clothing that he places his women in are also very romantic as he uses drapery to create movement. He also uses colour to bring out the character of the person portrayed. For instance, the translucent fabric is used to portray the subtle sexuality of women without them looking provocative or nude.
Waterhouse also adds realism in his paintings by creating movement, making the viewer feel like they are in the scene. In the unwelcome companion painting, he can create realism by using light and wild hair and the paintings don't look unrealistic or dreamy. Just like other artists, Waterhouse acquired the help of real-life models to paint or sketch. Personal records show that he used his sister, sister-in-law and his wife to model for him. He also used famous models such as Beatrice and Flora. Another artist who famously captured the female figure right across his career, including some memorable posters which promoted various events across the city of Paris was Alphonse Mucha, a Czech who was talented in oils and as an illustrator. Mucha's best work included Chocolat Ideal, Cycles Perfecta and Dance.