There are some small notes left alongside the artwork which help us to learn more about the circumstances of this work. Although in German it has since been translated into English and allows us to pinpoint the precise age of his mother at that time. It also features his standard signature mark, a sort of symbol that combines his initials.
His mother features a modest headdress and light clothing whilst her neck is noticeably aged. Her eyes appear to have health issues and is not really a picture of health in general. We can look into the reasons for his decision to create a portrait of his mother at a point when she was particularly old. Perhaps it was pure pride in all that she had achieved and done for him during her long life? Or perhaps it was to suggest that his roots were modest despite his considerable achievements over his own lifetime.
It is important to remember that during this time in European history that life expectancy was considerably shorter than it is today and that just to reach the age that she did, is an achievement in itself. She appears again in several other drawings, with the most likely reason being purely that the artist loved and appreciated his mother and all that she had done for him.