When I begin a new subject or one I haven't done in awhile I start in black and white. When I feel I am comfortable with black or white or bored I then add colour. Only 3 colours were used, Burnt Sienna, white and black.
The boss says he recognizes the image, so I feel some progress. If you don't know who it is would the quote help? "I'm going to make him an offer he can't refuse".