Durer frequently portrayed the old in his work, drawn to them by the exaggerated facial features that many of them would have, particularly those who have experienced greater hardships in their lives. The artist uses small touches of white heightening here in order to add an extra dimension of depth to the piece and this continued into his Praying Hands masterpiece.
The elderly man looks to upwards thoughtfully whilst balancing on a small walking stick, added deliberately in order to underline his age and fragility. The model for this piece was used on several occassions so that probably living locally to Durer at this time so was easily accessible.
Most of the old man is covered, making this more of a study in drapery than anatomy. You can see his head and right hand, plus a small suggestion of his legs, but the central focus is on his deeply layered attire and the way in which the artist captures it. You will find the standard signature of the artist here, his two intials together in a symbol used throughout his career.