figure, scale, environment
Most figure based drawing begins with the model. Here the environment was mapped out first.
The model posed in several places - sometimes near, sometimes far, sometimes in frame, sometimes not.
The important thing was to locate the figure against markers within the environment.
Using this method, one figure inhabits a space many times, at different scales and quite often overlapping itself.
The drawings often suggest depth, with large objects in the foreground and smaller ones receding towards the background.
The process helps to clarify how Degas may have constructed his work: