Chapman, J.G. (John Gadsby), 1808-1889. / The American drawing-book: a manual for the amateur, and basis of study for the professional artist: especially adapted to the use of public and private schools, as well as home instruction.
(1870 [1873 printing])
[Introduction], pp. [unnumbered]-10
IN TROD U C TI ON. Design, he would have done better; had he cultivated and perfected that elementary knowledge, his difficulties would have all vanished, and the beginning and end of his labor would have been placed~ at once before him. Make them artists, or, better still, artist-workmen, and, with their proverbial energy, intelligence, and enterprise, no limit can be placed to what our mcchanics may achieve., A knowledge of Design, even in copying, gives great advantages. If he understands the principles upon which the original is produced, there is no fear of the copyist committing offensive variations. How often do we see the most beautiful designs distorted into deformity by thc variation of a single line; an error of ignorance that must continually occur, until our me- chanics are better instructed in this branch of education. It is a vain hope, that a work so limited as this, will supply all the information the artisan should require; but should it lead him to make a beginning, he will so soon find his advantage in it, that he will be induced to pursue it farther. He will have his children and apprentices instructed; he will urge the establishment of schools and collections of models, to which they can be directed; and he will in his own time see the fruits, in the advancement of our manufactures to a degree of perfection that can never exist, without an intimate connexion between them and the Arts of Design. There are those of another class of society to whom education in Drawing would prove a real blessing. Of the thousands of helpless and dependent females, who are compelled to toil night and day, in painful and ill-paid labor, to the destruction of health and life, too many are tempted into paths of vice and misery by absolute necessity, who undoubtedly possess capacity that needs but cultivation and development to secure respectability and sup- port. The natural refinement and fertility of the female mind renders it a fruitful field for cultivation, that should be rescued from neglect. If the voice of right and mercy plead not with sufficient eloquence in their behalf, let that of interest at least prevail. Give to women the advantages of education in Design. Begin in your public schools-let them carry it to their homes, to the manufacture of articles of taste and fancy; to the early education of their children-and more, if they possess the capacity, let them take the pencil, the chisel, or the burin, and instead of broken-hearted victims of incessant toil, we shall soon see them filling the places, and with the wages of men, in departments of usefulness and industry for which they are by nature so eminently qualified.
Based on date of publication, this material is presumed to be in the public domain.| For information on re-use, see http://digital.library.wisc.edu/1711.dl/Copyright