Pen Drawing eBook

Charles Donagh Maginnis
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 59 pages of information about Pen Drawing.

[Illustration:  FIG. 32 L. RAVEN HILL]

[Illustration:  FIG. 33 DANIEL VIERGE]

[Illustration:  FIG. 34 P. G. JEANNIOT]



I have thought it advisable in this chapter to select, and to work out in some detail, a few actual problems in illustration, so as to familiarize the student with the practical application of some of the principles previously laid down.

[Illustration:  FIG. 35 FROM A PHOTOGRAPH]

[Illustration:  FIG. 36 D. A. GREGG]

[Side note:  First Problem]

In the first example the photograph, Fig. 35, shows the porch of an old English country church.  Let us see how this subject has been interpreted in pen and ink by Mr. D. A. Gregg, Fig. 36.  In respect to the lines, the original composition presents nothing essentially unpleasant.  Where the strong accent of a picture occurs in the centre, however, it is generally desirable to avoid much emphasis at the edges.  For this reason the pen drawing has been “vignetted,”—­that is to say, permitted to fade away irregularly at the edges.  Regarding the values, it will be seen that there is no absolute white in the photograph.  A literal rendering of such low color would, as we saw in the preceding chapter, be out of the question; and so the essential values which directly contribute to the expression of the subject and which are independent of local color or accidental effect have to be sought out.  We observe, then, that the principal note of the photograph is made by the dark part of the roof under the porch relieved against the light wall beyond.  This is the direct result of light and shade, and is therefore logically adopted as the principal note of Mr. Gregg’s sketch also.  The wall at this point is made perfectly white to heighten the contrast.  To still further increase the light area, the upper part of the porch has been left almost white, the markings suggesting the construction of the weather-beaten timber serving to give it a faint gray tone sufficient to relieve it from the white wall.  The low color of the grass, were it rendered literally, would make the drawing too heavy and uninteresting, and this is therefore only suggested in the sketch.  The roof of the main building, being equally objectionable on account of its mass of low tone, is similarly treated.  Mr. Gregg’s excellent handling of the old woodwork of the porch is well worthy of study.

[Side note:  Second Problem]

Let us take another example.  The photograph in Fig. 37 shows a moat-house in Normandy; and, except that the low tones of the foliage are exaggerated by the camera, the conditions are practically those which we would have to consider were we making a sketch on the spot.  First of all, then, does the subject, from the point of view at which the photograph is taken, compose well?* It cannot be said that it does. 

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Pen Drawing from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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