Studio: international art — 1.1893

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1 cm
Pen-Drawing for Process

the result. It is an example of the bitumen pro- used to eat away the metal of the block—that the
cess, whose original sin of exaggerating those pencil- gelatine renders every jot and tittle of a drawing,
marks which it has reproduced at all, is cloaked by and would by the nature of the process rather
the intervention of hand-work all over the block. exaggerate than diminish ; and that in those pro-

cesses in which acids play a
'f J&SSjef part, the process-man must be

. ; '= • always watchful lest his zinc

s \ ^ plate be " over-etched," lest the

upstanding metal lines be eaten
away to a scratchy travesty of
the original drawing.

It should not be forgotten
that, to-day, hand-work on pro-
cess-blocks is become very
usual. To paraphrase a well-
worn political catch phrase, the
old methods have been called
in to redress the vagaries of the
new: the graver has been re-
tained to correct the crudities
of the rocking-bath. To be
less cryptic—the graver is used
nowadays to tone down the
harsh and ragged lines of the
etched zinc.

The other illustration will
convey the idea. Here is a
by the swelled gelatine process zinc block grounded with bitu-

men and etched by the aid

You can see how carefully the graver has been of acids. The original drawing was made upon
put through the lines to produce a greyness. The HI' Whatman paper, with Stephens' ebony stain,
drawing was now sent for re-
production by the swelled
gelatine process. This is a
much more satisfactory block.
Everything that the original
contained is reproduced. The
sullen blacknesses of the pin-
nacled rocks are nothing ex-
tenuated as in the first
example, where they seem
comparatively insignificant,
and the technical qualities of
pen and pencil can be iden-
tified throughout. The same
remarks apply even more
strongly to the small illustra-
tions from the Note at Gorran.

But such a pure pen-draw-
ing as that of Charlwood,
shown here in blocks by
(i) Messrs. Dawson's Typo-
graphic Etching, and (2) by
M. Chefdeville's sympathetic
treatment of the albumen pro-
cess, would have come almost by the albumen trocess. louis chefdeville
equally well by bitumen or by

an ordinary practitioner's treatment of albumen. and an F nib of Mitchell's make. The size of
It offered no technical difficulties, and there is that drawing was ten inches across: the sky
exceedingly little to choose between these two drawn in with light parallel lines. A first proof
blocks. Careful examination would show that a showed a sky and a sea of middle distance both
very slight thickening of line had taken place rendered harsh and wanting in aerial perspec-
throughout the block by the gelatine method, and tive. A graver was put through those parts, cutting
this must ever be the distinguishing difference be- up the lines into dots and putting them into their
tween that process and others in which acids are proper relation to the rest of the picture.

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