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])
Chapter VIII. Painting, pp. -252
PAINTING IN PASTEL. 561 the studio, and afterward attached as firmly to walls as if they were painted thereon. All facilities and expedients that are available in oil-painting are equally so in this method; and there is cer- tainly much less liability to alteration in the tints from natural causes, which more or less affect works in oil by the action of time, or from dampness and exposure. 73. PAINTING OR DRAWING IN PASTEL, OR COLORED CRAYONS, may not only be employed advantageously for sketches and studies, but also in the production of very pleasing and effective pictures. The process is very simple, and command of it may be very readily attained by any one possessing a just cowprehension of the general principles of painting, and their practical application by other methods. The paper for pastel should be stretched, in the manner advised for water-colors, and of a substantial ~haracter, not too highly sized. If slightly rubbed over with fine pumice-powder, the crayons will both work and adhere better; or a slight coat of thin starch, with pumice-powder, may be given with a broad, soft brush, as a preparation. Fine canvass thus prepared may also be used. Crayon drawings have the disadvantage of liability to injury, unless defended by glass, or some process by which the pigments may be more firmly attached to the paper than it is possible to effect by the mere friction employed in their application. Whatever process may be resorted to, we know of none that does not, in some degree at least, materially affect the clearness and purity of the tints, although even this in some cases may be turned to advantage by judicious treatment; as a crayon-drawing, thus fixed, may be worked over with tempera or water-colors, or even with oil, by the further application of varnish.* * The following may be considered among the most approved meth- ods of fixing drawings, or paintings in crayon: To a saturated solution of alum, in pure water, add as much fish-glue as may form a size of proper consistency (which can only be regulated by the character of the drawing for which it is intended). Let the solution stand for about thirty-six hours, after which it should be boiled. Pass this glue-water, saturated with alum, through a linen cloth, and add about an equal quantity of some colorless spirit or diluted alcohol. For a small drawing, an prdinary dish may answer; but, if large, a wooden or other tray, water-tight, must be provided for the solution; and, holding the drawing horizontally, face downward, gently immerse it therein, cau- tiously guarding against its touching the bottom. Almost instantly lift It out, without changing its horizontal position, in which it must re- main until dry, when the success of the process may be readily ascer- tained. A drawing thus treated may he varnished by the further application of fish-glue, to which is added about one third of spirits of wine. When this is dry, the ordinary spirit-varnish may be passed over. Another method is, to pounce over the drawing very evenly, by means of a gauze-sieve, finely-powdered gum-arabic, after which it is exposed to the steam of boiling water. The variona recipes for securing crayon-drawings by means of vola- tile oils are very inefficient. As we have known so many drawings to be utterly ruined by expert mental attempts at fixing them, we advise no one to make his first trial on one of value. Glass is their surest preservative. To mount a drawing on glass-procure a pane, or plate, of the proper size; clean it perfectly w.ith a little whiting or chalk, and run a narrow border around it of strong glue. Very slightly dampen the hack of the drawing, and lay it face downward on the glass; and be certain of a perfect adhesion of the paper on the edges, which it may be better to extend over them sufficiently to form a border. Place the drawing, thus mounted, on a cloth or several sheets of paper laid upon a fiat board or table, and over it another dry cloth, with a drawing. board, or with one ormore large books, not too heavy, and let it remain until perfectly dry.
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