Frida Kahlo painted her Self-portrait with a velvet dress in 1926. This photo captures that artwork, but Frida painted the photo with oil, copying the painting. This self-portrait, influenced by the work of Parmigianino or Modigliani, is the first professional artwork of the artist. She painted it for her boyfriend then, Alejandro Gómez Arias, who broke up with her. She explained that the sea in the back is a symbol of life.