To make the glue, Joseph heated dried rabbit skins in a large pot of water, releasing both an acrid smell and the strong adhesive properties in the hides. Through this Renaissance-era practice of treating the canvas, Lorjou was able to freely and generously apply thick coats of paint to his canvases.
Forty six years ago on this 12th of September, 1968, Lorjou's wife and fellow artist Yvonne Mottet passed away of leukemia. To offer his condolences, fellow artist Bernard Buffet wrote Lorjou the following letter.
More than four decades later, in 1949, Lorjou would describe the elements of his birth through a painting titled "La Naisance du Peintre" (The Birth of the Artist). In the background, the grandmother rose with the military horsemen she had gone to watch, the city of Blois on a canvas, the midwife holding the baby, Lorjou's parents to the right, siblings to the left, and an angel above performing the miracle.