SKETCHING TIP

You  outdoor  sketchers  who  are  trying  the  thing  for the  first  time may  find  yourselves annoyed, oeea-sionally (especially if  working  in  erowded  places),hy people  hanging  around  to  watch  you  work.  They may  even  offer unkind  remarks,  sueh as,  “See  the drawrer. Looks  like he  is  just  learning,”  or  “Say, Mister,  I know  where  there  is  something  prettier  to paint  than that old canal  boat! And it would  be easier  for  you,  too!” They  may  go  so  far  as  to  crowd  around  until  your view  of  your  subjeet is  completely  cut off. See  the poor  artist  in  the  aeeompanying  illustration,  for  in-stance!  This  sketch  of  a  typieal predicament,  by the  way,  was made  a  few  weeks  ago  (believe  it  or  not—^we don’t)  on  one  of  the  Hudson  River  boats  on  an excursion  to  Bear  Mountain. In  ease  of  such  a  erowd,  what  to  do?  In  one  pro-tective  method  which  has  many  followers  the  artist arises  now  and  then,  with  the  greatest  of  dignity,  and passes  the  hat.  One  might  even  buy  a  monkey  and train  him  to  do  the  same  thing.  In  another  method, guaranteed to  disperse  a  erowd quiekly and effectively,  the  artist  has  a  pocket  full  of  fountain  pens, dollar  watches,  or  gadgets  of some  sort.  When  his spectators  press  elose  to  wateh  him  work, he  suddenly interrupts  with  a  sales  talk  on  the  excellence  of  his pens  or  watches,  holding  them  up  for  display!  He may  even  get  a  eustomer.  Who  knows?

Illustration—from a  woodcut  iu  Harper’s  Monthly, December,  1864  (and  which  inspired  the  ahove  non-sense )—represents an  aetual  condition of  that  pe-riod.  It aecompanied  an  article  hy  the  artist-author, J.  Ross  Browne,  who wrote:—”Sketching  in  Arizona  is,  to  a  man  of  mercurial temperament,  rather  a  ticklish pursuit.  I  shall  not readily forget my experience of the canons and thiekets, and the queer feeling produced hy the slightest  sound  that  fell  upon  my  ears  as I  hurriedly committed  the  outlines  to  paper.  It  has  heen  my  for-tune  to  furnish  the  world  with  sketches  of  Madagas-car,  Zanzibar,  Palestine,  the Continent of Europe, Iceland,  and  some  few  other  points,  many  of  which were  achieved  under  circumstances  of  peculiar diffi-
culty;  hut  I  never  hefore  traveled  through  a  country in  which  I  was compelled  to pursue the fine arts with a revolver strapped around my hody, a douhle-harreled shot-gun  lying  across  my  knees,  and half a  dozen soldiers  armed  with  Sharpe’s  earhines  keeping  guard in the  distance. Even with  all the  safeguards  of  pistols and  soldiers  I  am  free  to  admit  that  on  occasions  of this  kind  I  frequently  looked  hehind  me  to  see  how the  country  appeared  in its rear  aspect.  An artist  with an  arrow  in  his  baek  may  he  a  very  picturesque  ob-jeet to  contemplate at  one’s  leisure;  but  I would rather  draw  him  on  paper  than  sit  for the  portrait myself. All  the  way  up  from  Fort  Yuma  I  was  upset by  these  diffieulties;  and  if  any  man  of  genius  and enterprise  thinks  he  eould  do  better under the circumstances he is welcome to try.

Here is the tip for the water colorist. To prevent quick drying( i am think of these warm days out of oors), add ten of fifteen drops of glycerine to a tumbler of water. Alcohol will aceelcrate drying.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *