Despite delicate health, Prudence Heward made a significant contribution, in particular as a portraitist. Heward became known for her figure paintings at a time when art in Canada was dominated by the landscape paintings of the Group of Seven. Heward was born in Montreal and studied under William Brymner and Randolph Hewton at the Art Association of Montreal and at the Académie Colarossi in Paris. She retained a close association with many of her former AAM classmates who briefly formed the Beaver Hall Group in 1920. Upon winning the Willingdon prize in 1929, she achieved national prominence. Heward painted images of women and girls almost exclusively. Her figures are characterized by well modeled forms and highly expressive features, frequently set in front of backgrounds that are geometric and decorative. Hester was painted while Heward was visiting artist Isabel McLaughlin in Bermuda.