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Chevalier de I'ordre de la legion d'honneur, 

toorfe is iitKtcatetr 






Bonne renomimee vaut mieux que ceinture dorte. 


MY first and pleasantest duty is to offer my 
heartiest thanks to the numerous correspondents 
who have honoured me with sympathetic letters 
of approval and with valuable criticisms. Judging 
from these kind letters, which have poured upon 
me in grateful showers, my book has filled a want 
in art literature. These letters, coming as they 
do from artists of all kinds, art-masters and 
photographers, many of whom are perfect 
strangers to me, have supplied me with sugges- 
tions and criticisms which I shall make use of in 
a later edition, if the public so will that there 
be one, and some of my correspondents I shall 
take the liberty of publicly thanking. 

The call for this second edition has come so 
soon that I have only had time to correct a few 
superficial errors, and as but few reviews have as 
yet reached me, I cannot answer any criticisms 

vi ii Preface. 

upon my work. So far there is nothing to 

I can only repeat that the student will do well 
to make artists his final court of appeal, and he 
must then act as he thinks fit. I have no burning 
desire to make converts, my sole object has been 
to tell the student what I could if he wished to 
know it. As to my views, I am perfectly willing 
that no one shall accept them, and am content to 
let posterity judge between me and my adverse 

In deference to the opinion of a highly valued 
friend a well-known artist I have included 
in this edition (as an Appendix) my paper on 
" Science and Art " read at the Camera Club 
Conference on March 26th, 1889. 

P. H. E. 

CHISWICK, March, 1889. 



PREFACE / . . vii 



Daguerre at a stance of the French Academy, Aug., 1839 . 1 

Eetrospect of work done by Photography since 1839 . . 2 
Influence of Photography on the Glyptic and Pictorial Arts, 

and vice versa ......... 5 

Aim of this book . . . . . . . . . 8 

The Naturalistic School of Photography 8 

A word to artists 9 

The three branches of Photography Artistic, Scientific, and 

Industrial : 

A. Art Division 10 

B. Science Division . . . . . 

C. Industrial Division .... 
" Professional and Amateur " photographers . 
A College of Photography ..... 
The Future of Photography .... 





Preamble , 17 

Analysis 17 

Art 17 

"Art-Science" . . . . ' 18 

Artistic . . 18 



Breadth 18 

Colour 18 

Creative Artist 19 

Fine Art 19 

High Art 20 

Ideal 20 

Imaginative 22 

Impressionism 22 

Interpreting Nature ........ 22 

Local Colour 22 

Low Art 22 

Naturalism ........ 22 

Original Work . . . . . . . . .24 

Photographic 24 

Quality 24 

Realism 24 

Relative Tone or Value 25 

Sentiment .......... 25 

Sentimentality ......... 25 

Soul 25 

Technique 26 

Tone 26 

Transcript of Nature .... .... 26 


An inquiry into the influence of the study of Nature on Art . 28 

Egyptian Art 30 

Monarchies of Western Asia . . . . . . .32 

Ancient Greek and Italian Art 33 

Early Christian Art 44 

Mediaeval Art 47 

Eastern Art Mohammedan ....... 52 

Chinese and Japanese Art ....... 54 

The Renascence 59 

From the Renascence to Modern Times 67 

A. Spanish Art 67 


B. German Art 

C. Flemish Art 

D. English Art 

E. American Art 

F. Dutch Art . 

G. French Art 



H. Sculpture ......... 92 

Retrospect 94 

Contents. xi 



Introduction and Argument . . . . . . .97 

Optic Nerves 97 

Le Conte's Classification of the subject 98 

Physical characters of the eye as an optical instrument . 98 

Direction of Light . .102 

Intensity of Light 103 

Colour 108 

Psychological data, and binocular vision . . . .111 
Perspective, depth, size, and solidity ..... 112 
Art principles deduced from the above data .... 114 




The Camera 

Choice of a camera ; tripod and bags 
Manipulating the Camera 
Pin-hole Photography . 
Accidents to the Camera 
Hand Cameras 

False drawing of photographic lenses 
Hints on the correct use of the lens 
Lenses for special purposes 
Diaphragms or " stops " . 
Physical qualities of Lenses . 
Hints on lenses .... 



Optics 134 

Dallmeyer's long-focus rectilinear landscape lens . 135 





Dark Room 

A developing rale . 

Ventilation of dark room 







Studio Furniture 

Studio effects. A rule for studio lighting 




How to focalize . 
The ground-glass picture 
Examples and Illustration in point 




Ways of Exposing . 
Rule for Exposing . 
Classification of Exposures 

A. Quick Exposures 

B. Time Exposures . 
Exposure Shutters . 

Variation of exposure, and conditions causing them 
On Exposure Tables 



Study of Chemistry 
On Plate making 
Wet-plate process . 
Tonality and development 
On developing 
On developers . 
Local development . 


Contents. xiii 



ii the study of tone .... 
Accidents and faults, and their remedies 
Varnishing the negative .... 
Boiler slides and paper negatives . 
Orthochromatic photography . 


Definition of retouching 184 

On working up photographs . 184 

On retouching ......... 186 

Adam Salomon and Rejlander on retouching . . . 187 



Various printing processes 191 

The Platinotype process 195 

Vignetting . ^ . . 196 

Combination printing . . . . . . .197 

On cloud negatives and printing in of clouds. . . . 198 



On enlarging 200 


Transparencies 202 

Lantern Slides 202 

Stereoscopic Slides 202 



Photo-mechanical processes 204 

A. For diagrams and topographical work . . 204 

B. For pictures 204 

Photo-etching 207 

The Typographic Etching Co 208 

xiv Contents. 


Hints for those having plates reproduced by photo-etching . 210 
W. L. Colls on " Methods of reproducing negatives from 
Nature for the copper-plate press " 212 


Mountants 218 

Mounts 219 

Frames 219 

Albums 220 



On copyrighting 221 

Method of copyright 

Law of copyright . . . . 222 



Exhibitions . ' . . -225 

Medals 226 

Judges ........... 227 


Conclusion 229 





Men born blind 233 

Education of Sight 234- 

Contents. xv 




On Composition 237 

Burnet's " Treatise on Painting " . . . . . . 238 



Out-door portraiture 


On picture-making . 

Figure and Landscape 

Studio-portraiture . 

Decorative art ..... 
Naturalism in decorative art . 
Photography as applied to decorative art 
Principles of decorative art . 
Practice of decorative art 






Practical hints ' . , . .254 






On different art methods of expression ....'. 269 

Answers to criticism on " Photography a pictorial Art " . 278 

Artists on Photographv 279 

Some masters of the minor arts .... 289 

xvi Contents. 



Art books . .293 


Books recommended 293 

Photographic Libraries 294 


" Science and Art," a paper read at the Camera Club 
Conference, held in the rooms of the Society of Arts in 
London on March 26th, 1889 295 

INDEX . . . 303 




AT a meeting of the French Academy of Sciences, held 
iii Paris on the 19th day of August, 1839, Louis Jacques 
Mande Daguerre, in the presence of the flower of Parisian Academy, 
art, literature and science, gave a demonstration of his new 
discovery the Daguerreotype. The success of the seance 
was complete, and the gathering of illustrious men was 
intoxicated with enthusiasm in favour of the Daguerreo- 
type. It is, then, almost fifty years ago that the result of 
the work of the father of photography, Joseph Nicephore 
de Niepce, who had died six years previously, and of the 
partner of his latter days Daguerre was given to the 
French public, for though Arago declared that " France 
had adopted the discovery and was prqud to hand it as a 
present to the whole world/' Daguerre, sharp business 
man that he was, took out a patent for his process in 
England on the 15th of July, 1839. 

It may be said, then, that for fifty years the influence of 
photography has been working amongst the people for 
better for worse; but a short half-century has photography 
had to develop, and we naturally feel a little curious 
to know what it has been doing all that time. Has the 
art been lying idle and stagnating, or has it been de- 
veloping and extending its roots into all the industrial, 
scientific and artistic fields of enterprise ? Let us see 
what this cool young goddess, born of art and science, who 
generally comes to stay and finally to oust the old god- 
desses from their temples, has been doing these fifty years. 

Naturalistic Photography. 

sc i ence sne nas been most busy. She 

t f . 

progress nas been giving us photographs of the moon, the stars, 
of photo- and even of the nebula. She has recorded eclipses and 
graphy in a transit of Yenus for us. She has drawn too the Sun's 
norny. corona, and registered those great volcanic explosions 
which playfully take place there periodically. She 
has shown us that there are stars which no telescope 
can find, and she has in another form registered for us 
the composition of the sun and of many of the stars ; and 
now she is busy mapping out the heavens. Like an all- 
powerful goddess, she plays with the planets and records 
on our plates, with delicate taps, the stars. She runs 
through the vast space of the kosmos doing our biddings 
with a precision and delicacy never equalled in short she 
is fast becoming the right hand of the astronomer. 
Micro- ]^ t con tent with her vast triumphs in space over the 

infinitely great, she dives down to the infinitely small, and 
stores up for us portraits of the disease-bearing genera- 
tion of Schizomycetes, the stiff-necked 'bacteria, and the 
wriggling vibrio, the rolling microccus, and the fungoid 
actinomycosis with deadly tresses ; these she pictures for 
us, so that we may either keep them on small plates, or 
else she throws them on large screens so that we are 
enabled to study their structure. On these screens too we 
can gaze on the structure of the Proteus-like white blood 
corpuscle, and we are able to study the very cells of our 
tongues, our eyes, our bones, our teeth, our hairs, and to 
keep drawings of them such as man never had before. 
So the kindly bright goddess stints us in nothing, for 
wherever the microscope leads there will she be found at 
our bidding. With the greatness of an all-seeing mind, it 
matters not to her whether she draws the protococcus or 
the blood-cells of an elephant, whether she depicts the 
eroding cancer cell or the golden scale on the butterfly's 
wing anything that we ask of her she does ; if we will but 
be patient. 

Chemis- But the little goddess, the light-bearer, is not content 
try< with these sciences but she must needs go and woo chemis- 

try and register the belted zones of the spectrum and tell 
us the mysterious secrets of the composition of matter. 

Introduction. 3 

Meteorology, too, has claimed her, and she draws for the 
meteorologist the frowning nimbus and the bright rolling 
cumulus. She scratches quickly on his plate the lightning's 
flash, and even measures the risings and fallings of the 
mercuries in his long glass barometers and thin-stemmed 
thermometers, so that the meteorologist can go and rest 
in the sun; and good-naturedly, too, she hints to him 
that his registerings are but fumblings after her precise 
and delicate work. This versatile little goddess, too, is 
playing with and hinting to the surveyors how she Survey- 
will not be coy if they will but woo her, for, says she, in &- 
"have I not already shown you how to measure the 
altitude of mountains, and how to project maps by my 
aid ? 

The geographer, too, is another lover well favoured by Geogra- 
the dainty goddess, he always takes her on his travels p y * 
now-a-days, and brings us back her inimitable drawings 
of skulls, savages, weapons, waterfalls, geological strata, 
fossils, animals, birds, trees, landscapes, and men, and 
we believe him when we know the light-bearer was with 
him, and soon in all his geographies, in all his botanies, 
in all his zoologies, in all his geologies, his entomologies, 
and all the rest of his valuable " ologies/' we shall find 
the crisp and inimitable drawings of his dainty com- 

The horny-handed engineer, too, is wooing her; he Engineer- 
makes love to her away down in dark caissons half -buried lng * 
in river beds ; whilst above-ground she scatters his plans 
far and wide. He uses her to show how his works are 
growing beneath the strong arms of his horny-handed 
gangs, and he even uses her to determine the temperature 
of the depths of the sea, and the direction of oceanic cur- 
rents ; yes, she does the work for him and he loves her. Medicine 
The earnest doctor and the curious biologist are amongst and Bio " 
her lovers, and the dainty one does not disdain their work, ogy ' 
for she knows it to be good ; for though she is fickle, she 
is kind at heart. For them she goes into the mysterious 
globe of the eye; down into the hollow larynx; and 
into the internal ear ; and drags forth drawings. The 
tumour-deformed leg, the tossing epileptic, the deformed 

B 2 

Naturalistic Photography. 

and naval 



trial arts. 

leprous body, the ulcerous scalp, the unsightly skin 
disease, the dead brain, the delicate dissection, the 
galloping horse, the flying gull, and erring man does she 
with quick and dainty strokes draw and give her lovers 
the physician and biologist. 

Then like the Valkyria she too delights in dire war. 
For her heroes she writes so finely that her letters are 
carried in a quill beneath a pigeon's wing into and out of 
beleaguered cities. She draws hasty notes of the country 
for the leaders of an invading army ; she preserves a 
record of the killed and she gives truthful drawings of the 
fields of battle and of the poor torn and jaded men after a 
battle ; whilst in times of peace she draws for the officer 
the effects of the explosion of a shell, the path of a bullet 
through the air, or the water thrown on high, like a geyser, 
by a hidden torpedo. She is the warder's friend too, for she 
draws the skulking thief, the greedy forger, and the cruel 
murderer; she draws, too, the knife that stabbed in the 
dark, and the dress all blood-besmirched ; she detects the 
forged bank note, and draws without quibble the position of 
the overturned and splintered railway car ; and she shows 
the scorched and gutted ruins of the burnt house for the 
insurance agent. She has her fun, too, for she twits the 
librarians with the ever increasing deluge of books, and 
hints laughingly they must one day come to her, for she 
will show them how to keep a library in a tea-caddy. 
The haggling tradesman she does not disdain, she will 
draw portraits of his fabrics to be circulated all over the 
world, she will copy the bad paintings and drawings done 
for him as advertisements by the pariahs of art. She 
reproduces trade-marks and signatures, and oh, naughty 
goddess ! she even, on the sly, copies on. old yellow paper 
old etchings and engravings so that the connoisseur does 
not know the new from the old. She helps in all kinds 
of advertising, reproducing the scenery by railways for 
the railway companies, sketching topographically for 
tourists, drawing mothers and fathers and children for 
the woild, so that the loved ones can go across the seas 
and leave themselves behind in form and feature. And 
so that the dead may not be forgotten she soothes the 

Introduction. 5 

living with their dear faces done in her pretty way. Nay, 
she even goes so far as to allow her works to be burnt on 
porcelain and sold in brooches, on plates and other ware. 

Nor do the children love you in vain, pretty goddess, 
for you give them magic-lanterns, and invisible pictures 
of yourself; to be made visible by a little secret you 
tell them. You give them magic cigar-holders and 
stereoscopes, all this out of your bountiful lap do you Ait. 
scatter ; but, pretty dainty light-bearer, have you no love 
dearer to you than all these, is there none amongst your 
wooers that you prefer? Yes, blush not, oh, dainty one, it is 
the artist who sees in you a subtler, finer aid than his 
sorry hand, so monkey-like in its fumblings. To him you 
give your delicate drawings on zinc to illustrate his books, 
or on copper to fill his portfolios, to him you give poems of 
the winds whispering amongst the reed-beds, of the waves 
roaring in the grey gloaming, of the laughing, bright- 
eyed mortal sisters of yours. To him, your favoured one, 
your chief love, you give the subtlety of drawing of the 
wind-shorn and leaf-bare oak, the spirit of the wild 
colts on the flowery marsh, the ripple of the river and the 
glancing flight of the sea-fowl. Together you and he 
spend days and nights, mid the streams and the woods, 
culling the silvery flowers of nature. Oh ! bright gene- - 
rous little goddess, who has stolen the light from the sun 
for mortals, and brought it to them not in a narthex reed 
as did Prometheus bring his living spark, but in silvery 
drops to be moulded to your lover's wish, be he star- 
gazer, light-breaker, wonder-seeker, sea-fighter or land- 
fighter, earth-roamer, seller-of-goods, judger-of-crimes, 
lover-of-toys, builder-of-bridges, curer-of-ills, or lover of 
the woods and streams. 

The influence of photography on the sister arts of 
sculpture, painting, engraving, etching and wood-cutting 
during these fifty years has been tremendous, as have 
they influenced in turn photography. Sculpture has 
been, perhaps, least influenced, although without photo- 
graphy thousands of posthumous statues which now 
grace the streets and the squares of the world could not 
have been modelled at all, or could only have been very 

6 Naturalistic Photography. 

conventionally and unsatisfactorily modelled. As it is, 
they are often excellent portraits. The effect of sculpture 
on photography has been to induce experimentalists to 
attempt a production of models in clay by means of an 
instrument called a pantograph. It is reported that these 
methods succeeded, but we never saw any of the produc- 
tions and have little faith in the methods. 

The influence of photography on painting, on the other 
hand, has been nothing short of marvellous, as can be 
seen in the great general improvement in the drawing of 
movement. It is a common practice for painters to take 
photographs of their models and throw enlargements 
of these on to a screen when the outlines are boldly 
sketched in. Again, it is a practice for painters to study 
the delicate tonality of photography, which is of course 
quite legitimate. Another influence of photography on 
painting is that the painter often tries to emulate the 
detail of the photograph. But this was more notice- 
able in the early days of photography, and it had a bad 
effect on painting, for the painter did not know enough of 
photography to know that what he was striving to imitate 
was due to an ignorant use of the art. He thought, 
as many people think now-a-days, that there is an absolute 
and unvarying quality in all photographs. The effect on 
miniature painting was disastrous ; it has been all but 
killed by photography, and we think rightly. And it 
must be remembered that photography killed it not- 
withstanding the fact that many of the best miniature 
painters adopted the new art as soon as they could. 
Newton was a photographer. Photography also killed 
the itinerant portrait painter who used to stump the 
country and paint hideous portraits for a few shillings, 
or a night's lodging. Photography too, has, unfortu- 
nately, been the cause of a vast production of weak 
and feeble water-colours, oil-paintings and etchings. 
Second and third rate practitioners of these arts have 
simply copied photographs and supplied the colouring from 
their imagination, and thousands of feeble productions 
has been the result; this is a dishonest use of photography, 
but one by no means uncommon. We often have food 

Introduction. 7 

for reflection on the gullibility of man, when we see poor 
paintings and etchings exhibited at " one man " exhibi- 
tions and elsewhere, which are nothing but ruined photo- 
graphs; the very drawing shows that, and the time in which 
such a collection of paintings is painted also hints at the 
method. All the drawing has been done by the photo- 
graphic lens, and transferred to the panel or canvas. 
These are the very men who decry photography. Such 
work is only admissible if confessed, but of course such 
people as this keep their method quite secret. The 
etchings done in this way are simply impudent. The 
influence of painting on photography has been great and 
good as a factor in the cultivation of the aesthetic 
faculty, but its conventionality has often been harmful. 

As we have said, by the aid of photography feeble 
painters and etchers are able to produce fairly passable 
work, where otherwise their work would have been dis- 
graceful. Wood-cutters and line engravers too gain 
much help from us, but they find photography a rival 
that will surely kill them both. We have gone into this 
vexed question in detail in the body of this work. One 
of the best and most noted wood engravers since Bewick's 
time has given it as his opinion that there is no need for 
wood engraving now that the " processes " can so truly 
reproduce pictures, for, as he says, no great original 
genius in wood-cutting will ever be kept back by " process 
work," and it is a good thing that all others should be 

The chief thing which at present oppresses photo- 
graphy is " the trade." Print sellers have accumulated 
stocks of engravings and etchings and as they may not 
come down in price, they therefore give photogravures 
and photographs the cold shoulder. A print seller who 
would confine himself to the sale and publication of photo- 
etchings and photographs is sorely needed. 

Such, briefly, are the effects of photography on her sister 
arts and of them on her. 

Incredible indeed seems the all-pervading power of this 
light-bearing goddess. Next to printing, photography is 
the greatest weapon given to mankind for his intellec- 

8 'Naturalistic Photography. 

tual advancement. The mind is lost in wonderment at 
the gigantic strides made by this art in its first fifty 
years of development, and we feel sure if any one will 
take the trouble to inquire briefly what photography has 
done and is doing in every department of life he will be 
astonished by the results of his inquiries. 

Branches From what has been said it is very evident that the 
graphy. " P rac tice of photography must be very different in the 
different branches of human knowledge to which, it is 

The application of its practice and principles has been 
most ably treated in some of these branches, especially 
the scientific branches, but hitherto there has been no 
book which gives only just sufficient science for art- 
students and at the same time treats of the art side. 

Aim of ^y e propose in this book to treat photography from 

naturahs- ,, X . . r , . . TXT , ,, .^ n \ J . 

tic pho- t fie artistic standpoint. We shall give enough science 

tography. to lead to a comprehension of the principles which 
we adduce for our arguments for naturalistic photo- 
graphy, and we shall give such little instruction in art 
as is possible by written matter, for art we hold is to be 
learned by practice alone. That, then, is our aim, and no 
one knows better than ourselves how far short of our 
ideal we have fallen, but we trust the task as attempted 
may do a little good and lead some earnest wandering 
workers into the right path. We know that we have 
not accomplished our task without errors, all we plead 
is that we have endeavoured to reduce the number to a 
minimum, and where we have failed we trust those who 
detect our failures will kindly, not carpingly, communi- 
( ate them to us, so that if we ever reach a second 
edition we may therein be regenerated. 

Contents The photographic student, whose aim is to make 
300 ' pictures, will find in this book all directions, such as the 
choosing of apparatus, the science which must be 
learned, the pictures and sculpture which must be 
studied, the art canons which are to be avoided, the 
technique to be learned, including all manipulations ; 
the fundamental principles of art, and a critical resume of 
conventional art canons, including much other advice. 

Introduction. 9 

In addition to this the book is an argument for the 
Naturalistic school of photography, of which we preached 
the first gospel in an address delivered before the members 
of the Camera Club in London in March, 1886. ' 

The necessity of this book may not be patent to artists 
who do not know the photographic world; but if they 
will consider for a moment the present position of a 
student of photography, whose aim is to produce artistic 
work, they will see the necessity for some such work. 
The position of the photographic world at present is this : 
nearly all the text-books teach how to cultivate the 
scientific side of photography, and they are so diffuse that 
we find photo-micrography, spectrum analysis and art all 
mixed up together. And when we assure the artistic reader 
that the few books and articles published with a view to 
teaching art, contain resumes of Burnet's teachings, as 
set forth in his well-known "Treatise on Painting;" 
that the widest read of these books lays down laws for the 
sizes of pictures as advocated by that " eminent painter 
Norman Macbeth; " cautions the student not to take pic- 
tures on grey days ; and contains various other erroneous 
ideas ; we say when artists know this, and in addition that 
there is no book in which " tone" is properly defined, they 
will perhaps understand the necessity for some such book 
as this one. Lastly, the artist must remember that 
photographers are very loath to listen to any one but 
photographers on any subject connected with their art. 

To give the student a clear insight into the first 
principles of art is of course, as we have said, the chief 
aim of the book, but besides that it is an attempt to start 
a departure from the scientific side of photography. 
This departure must be made, and the time is now ripe. 
It should be clearly and definitely understood, that 
although a preliminary scientific education is neces- 
sary for all photographers, after that preliminary educa- 
tion the paths and aims of the scientist, industrial 
photographer and artist, lie widely apart. This matter 
should be kept . constantly in view, and specialists in 
one branch should not meddle with other branches. The 
1 Yide Photographic News for March 19, 1886. 

I o Naturalistic Photography. 

art has so extended its fields for work that there is scope, 
even in a sub-branch of the scientific division to occupy the 
full energies and attention of the most able men. At 
exhibitions, too, the three great divisions into which 
photography falls should be kept rigidly separated. The 
writer sees in all these branches equal good and equal use, 
but he sees also the necessity of keeping their aims and 
methods separate. That this differentiation is now possible 
and necessary is, from the evolutionary standpoint, the 
greatest sign of development. The author feels convinced 
that if any student is going to succeed in any one branch 
he must not scatter his energies, but devote himself with 
singlemindedness to that particular branch. Directly 
the aims and methods of the separate branches of the 
art are fully recognized there will no longer be ignorance 
and misunderstandings of first principles. We shall not 
hear a first-rate lantern slide described as artistic, 
because it is untouched, and we shall not hear of a 
" high-art " photographer criticizing photo-micrographs 
of bacteria, matters that none but a medical microscopist 
can criticize. And above all, we shall not have the 
hack-writer talking of our " art-science/' 

We have drawn up a rough table of classification to 
illustrate our meaning, but of course it must be remem- 
bered that this division is arbitrary, but it would, we 
think, be a good working classification. 

A. Art Division. 

Art divi- In this division the aim of the work is to give aesthetic 
sion. pleasure alone, and the artist's only wish is to produce 
works of art. Such work can be judged only by trained 
artists, and the aims and scope of such work can be fully 
appreciated only by trained artists. Photographers who 
qualify themselves by an art training, and their works 
alone, belong to this class. They alone are artists. Included 
in this class would be original artists, first-rate photo- 
etchers, and typo-blockmakers, whose aim is to repro- 
duce in facsimile all the artistic quality of original works 

Introduction. n 

of art. Such photographers should have an artistic 
training without fail, as all the best have had. 

B. Science Division. 

In this division the aim of the work is to investigate Science 
the phenomena of nature, and by experiment to make 
new discoveries, and corroborate or falsify old experi- 
ments. The workers in this great and valuable department 
of photography may be divided into 

a. Scientific experimentalists in all branches of science. 

b. Chemists and spectrum-analysts. 

c. Astronomers. 

d. Microscopists. 

e. Engineers. 

/. Military and naval photographers. 

g. Meteorologists. 

h. Biologists. 

i. Geographers. 

j. Geologists. 

k. Medical men. 

Z. Physicists. 

m. Anthropologists. 

These sub-divisions include all that vast host of 
trained scientific men who are photographers in con- 
nection with their work. Their aim is the advancement 
of science. 

G. Industrial Division. 

This class includes that great majority of the photo- 
graphic world the craftsmen. These men have learned Division, 
the methods of their craft, and go on from day to day 
meeting the industrial requirements of the age, producing 
good useful work, and often filling their pockets at the 
same time. Their aim is utilitarian, but in some branches 
they may at the same time aim to give an aesthetic 
pleasure by their productions, but this is always subordi- 
nated to the utility of the work. When they aim at 
giving this aesthetic pleasure as well, they become art- 

Amongst these craftsmen are included photographers 

1 2 Naturalistic Photography. 

who will take any one or anything if paid to do so, such 
forming what is known as "professional photographers." 
All reproducers of pictures, patterns, &c., by photo- 
mechanical processes, in which the aim is nofc solely 
aesthetic pleasure, as in reproducing topographic views. 
All plate makers. Transparency, opnl, lantern-slide, and 
stereoscopic slide makers. All facsimile photographers ; 
photographers of pictures, statuary, &c. All makers 
of invisible photographs, magic cigar photographs. All 
operators who work under the guidance of artists or 
scientists for pay, they not having artistic and scientific 
training- themselves, as in the preparation of lantern 
slides for a biologist. All enlargers, operators, spotters, 
printers, retouchers, mounters, &c. Producers of porce- 
lain pictures. Producers of facsimile type blocks and 
copper plates, with no artistic aim, et id genus omne. 
All photographs produced for amusement by the un- 
trained in art or science. All photographers who pro- 
duce pattern photographs, " bits " of scenery, and animals 
for draughtsmen to work from. 

It will thus be clear to the student that all these photo- 
graphers serve useful purposes and each is invaluable 
in his way, but we repeat the aim of the three groups of 
photographers is very different and quite distinct, as 
distinct as in draughtmanship are the etchings of 
Rembrandt, the scientific drawings of Huxley, and the 
pattern plates of a store catalogue. All are useful in 
their place, and who shall dare to say which is more 
useful than the other ; but all are distinct, and can in no 
way be compared with one another or classed together 
any more than can the poems of Mr. Swinburne, the text 
of Professor TyndalPs "Light," and the Blue-books. 
All can be good in their way, but the aims and methods 
of the one must not be confounded with the aims and 
methods of the other, and we fear that such is the case 
" Atna- i n the photographic world at present, 
teur" There is one obstacle which we must clear from the 

fepsional'" ^dent's P atn ^ n tn ^ s introduction, and that is the con- 
photo- fusion of the terms " professional " and "amateur," as 
graphers. used in the photographic world j for in this world it must 

Introduction. 1 3 

be understood that these terms are used as in no other 
world. Briefly, photographers mean by " professional " 
one who gains his living by photography, and an "amateur" 
means one who does not practise photography for his 
living. The folly of this is obvious, for by this definition 
the greatest English scientific photographer, Captain 
Abney, is an " amateur/ 5 and the sands photographer at 
Margate is a " professional/' 

This anomalous definition of the two classes has led 
journalists into strange errors and mistakes. We re- 
member one journal, which prides itself upon its accuracy, 
breaking into satirical writing because the judges at a 
certain photographic exhibition were to be " amateurs/' 
Of course the journalist who wrote that article used 
"amateur" in the ordinary English sense, and hence his 
amusement ; but, as we have shown, he made a great 
error in fact. 

In reality professional photographers are those who 
have studied one branch of photography thoroughly, 
and are masters of all its resources, and no others. It is 
no question of s. d., this " professional " and " amateur " 
question, but a question of knowledge and capacity. An 
amateur is a dabbler without aim, without thorough 
knowledge, and often without capacity, no matter how 
many of his productions he may sell. We think, then, 
the words "professional" and "amateur" should be 
abolished from the photographic world, until that day 
shall arise when there is a central training and examining 
body, that shall have the power of making real pro- 
fessional photographers, when all possessing a diploma 
would be professionals and all others amateurs. 

We fondly hope that a college of photography may A college 
one day be instituted, where a good art and science training * k* 
may be obtained, where regular classes will be held 
by professors and regular terms kept, and where some mas. 
sort of distinguishing diploma as Member of the Koyal 
Photographic College will be given to all who pass 
certain examinations. The M.E.F.C. would then have a 
status, and the profession which would then exist but 
only exists as a trade now- would be able to draw 

14 Naturalistic Photography. 

up salutary laws for the government and good be- 
haviour of its members, and the status of photography 
would be everywhere raised. The diploma of F.R.P.C. 
(Fellow of the Eoyal Photographic College) could be 
given to distinguish photographers at home and abroad 
as an honorary title. 

But if such an institution is to have weight it must 
procure a charter. Money must be obtained to give 
honorariums to the lecturers, and the lectureships must 
be held by the best men. To begin with, all photographers 
in practice could be admitted upon passing a very simple 
examination in the subjects of elementary education and 
photography. If ever such a thing is brought about 
and we trust it may be we should find many gentlemen 
of education would join the ranks, as indeed they are 
doing now; and with the taste and education they 
brought to the work, we should see them working quietly 
in studios like painters, and the " show-case " and the 
vulgar mounts with medals and other decorations, and 
the u shop-window," and the " shop-feeling" would all 
disappear. We need not despair if we will all do what 
is in us to kill " vulgarity," for painters were not so well 
off as most photographers are now but a very few decades 
ago. What gives us hope for these golden days is the 
fact that we number in our ranks in some branch or the 
other probably more intellectual men than any other 
calling. We have an emperor, and quite a profusion of 
royal-blooded wights and aristocrats, whilst every learned 
profession gives us of its best. Law, medicine, art, 
science, all contribute largely important members to 
swell our ranks. 

Here, then, we must end our introductory remarks, 
and we wish the student who comes to the study of 
photography with capacity and earnestness all success. 

P. H. E. 

CHISWICK, July, 1888. 



"The dignity of the snow-capped mountain is lost in distinctness, 
but the joy of the tourist is to recognize the traveller on the top. The 
desire to see, for the sake of seeing, is, with the mass, alone the one 
to be grasped, hence the delight in detail." 




IT were better at the outset to define our terms, for Term111 - 
iiothing leads more certainly to confusion in studying 00 ^' 
a subject than a hazy conception of the meanings 
of words and expressions. Perhaps in no branch 
of writing have words so many meanings as in 
writings on Art, where every expositor seems intent 
upon having his own word or expression. For this 
reason we wish clearly to define the words and art ex- 
pressions in use in this book. Not, be it understood, 
that we claim in any way for any definitions that they 
are the rigid and final definitions of the expressions 
used, but we de'fine what we mean by certain words and 
terms so that the reader may understand clearly the 
text in which such words occur, our aim being to be clear 
and to avoid all empty phraseology. 

Seizing the impression of natural objects, and ren- Analysis. 
.dering this impression in its essentials has been called 
analyzing nature ; and the impression so rendered is an 

Art is the application of knowledge for certain ends. Art * 
But art is raised to Fine Art when man so applies this 
knowledge that he affects the emotions through the 
senses, and so produces aesthetic pleasure in us ; and the 
man so raising an art into a fine art is an artist. There- 
fore the real test as to whether the result of any method 
of expression is a fine art or not, depends upon how much 
of the intellectual element is required in its production. 
Thus Photography may be, and is, in the hands of an 
artist, a method of expression producing works of fine 


1 8 Naturalistic Photography. 

art, because no such works can be produced in photo- 
graphy by a man who is not an artist ; whereas organ- 
grinding is a mode of expressing music, but the result is 
not a fine art, because no intellect, and therefore no artist, 
is required to produce the expression ; a monkey might 
produce as good music on a hand-organ as could a 

Art- A compound term applied by some writers to photo- 

science, graphy, and by others to all crafts founded upon science. 
It is an absurd term, and its use should be strongly 
discouraged. It is to be found in no good dictionary. 
It is an unmeaning expression, because photography is 
an art founded upon science, just as is etching, and to 
call photography an " art-science " is to show imperfect 
knowledge of the English language, and especially of 
the meaning of the two words of which the compound is 
formed art and science. 

Artistic. A word greatly misused by photographers. When 
applied to a person, it means one trained in art, and when 
applied to a work, it means leaving the impression of an 
artist's handiwork ; and this photographers should not 
forget, neither should they forget that an artist has been 
trained in art. Ihis should especially be borne in mind 
by those who dub themselves "artist-photographers," 
whatever they may mean by that compound. Photo- 
graphers should wait for other people to call them artists, 
and when artists call a photographer a brother artist, he 
will probably deserve the title, and not before. In the 
same way they should refrain from calling things artistic 
or inartistic, for it must be remembered that to use these 
words aright implies that the speaker possesses a know- 
ledge of art. 

Breadth. Is a term used to describe simple arrangements of 
light and shade of colour, which produce a sense of the 
largeness and space of nature. All great work has 
breadth, all petty work is devoid of it ; for petty minds 
cannot see the breadth in nature, so they are naturally 
unable to get it into their work. 

Colour. "This theory of what constitutes fine colour is one of 

the peculiar traits of the old-time painters, and of the 

Terminology. 1 9 

landscape critic who studies nature in the National 
Gallery. If one may judge by their remarks or by the 
examples they worship, a painting to be fine in colour 
must first of all be brown, or at least yellow; the 
shadows must all be hot and transparent ; lakes and 
crimsons must be used freely, while a certain amount of 
very deep blue should be introduced somewhere, that the 
rest of the picture may appear the warmer by the 
contrast. Above all things it must not be natural, or it- 
ceases to be fine and sinks to the level of the common- 
place. In fact, these colourists appear to admire a picture 
from just the same point of view they would an Indian 
carpet, a Persian rug, old tapestry, or any other con- 
ventional design, and seem to judge of it by similar 
standards ; if one suggests that it has no resemblance to 
what it claims to represent, they reply, ' Ah, but it is a 
glorious frame, full of colour ! ' But colour in painting 
can only be really fine so far as it is true to nature. A 
grey picture may be just as fine in colour as the most 
gorgeous. Beauty in colour, as in form, depends on its 
fitness and truth." I 7 , F. Goodall. 

The vulgar view of fine colour is easily explained on 
evolutionary grounds, it is but a harking back to the 
instincts of the frugivorous apes our ancestors. 

There is much misconception as to the use of the word 
1 ' creator " in the arts. Some think only those gentlemen 
who paint mythological pictures, or story-telling pictures, 
are creators. Of course such distinction is absurd ; any 
artist is a creator when he produces a picture or writes 
a poem ; he creates the picture or speech by which 
he appeals to others. He is the author, creator, or 
whatever you like to call him, he is responsible for its 

Versifying, Prose- writing, Music, Sculpture, Painting, Fine art. 
Photography, Etching, Engraving, and Acting, are all 
arts, but none is in itself a fine art, yet each and all can 
be raised to the dignity of a fine art when an artist by any 
of these methods of expression so raises his art by his 
intellect to be a fine art. For this reason every one who 
writes verse and prose, who sculpts, paints, photographs, 

c 2 

2O Naturalistic Photography. 

etches, engraves, is not necessarily an artist at all, For he 
does not necessarily have the intellect, or use it in 
practising his art. It has long been customary to call 
all painters and sculptors artists, as it has long been 
customary in Edinburgh to call all medical students 
doctors. But in both cases the terms are equally loosely 
applied. Our definition, then, of an artist is a person who 
whether by verse, prose, sculpture, painting, photo- 
graphy, etching, engraving, or music, raises his art to a 
fine art by his work, and the works of such artist alone 
are works of art. 

High art. I n a word, high and low art are absurd terms, no art is 
high or low. Art is either good or bad art, not high or 
low, except when skied or floored at exhibitions. " High 
art " and ' ( higher artistic sense " we shall not use because 
they are meaningless terms, for if they are not meaning- 
less then every picture falls under one or other category, 
high or low ; if so let some one classify all pictures into 
these two divisions and he will find himself famous as 
the laughing-stock of the world. 

ideal. A volume might be written on this word, but it would 

be a volume of words with little meaning. As applied 
to art, the meaning of " ideal " has generally been that of 
something existing in fancy or in imagination, something 
visionary, an imaginary type of perfection. G. H. Lewes 
says, "Nothing exists but what is perceived ;" we would 
say, nothing exists for us but what is perceived, and this 
we would make a first principle of all art. A work of 
pictorial art is no abstract thing, but a physical fact, and 
must be judged by physical laws. If a man draws a 
monster which does not exist, what is it ? It is but a 
modified form of some existing thing or combination of 
things, and is after all not half so terrible as many 
realities. What is more terrible than some of the snakes 
than the octopus, than the green slimy crabs of our own 
waters ? Certainly none of the dragons and monsters 
drawn from the imagination is half so horrible. Did 
the great Greek artist, ^Eschylus, describe a dragon as 
gnawing at the liver of Prometheus ? No, he simply drew 
the picture of a vulture as being sufficiently emblematic. 

Terminology. 2 r 

Bat let us assume, for the sake of argument, that the 
dragon is more dreadful than any reality, even then the 
pictorial and glyptic artist cannot use it, for as he has no 
model to work from, the technique will necessarily be bad, 
there will be no subtleties of tone, of colour, of drawing', 
all which make nature so wonderful and beautiful. The 
dragon will be a pure caricature, that is all. Again, some 
people consider it wonderful that a painter takes a myth 
and renders it on canvas, and he is called " learned" and 
" scholarly " for this work. But what does he do ? Let us 
say he wishes to paint the Judgment of Paris. He, if he 
is a good painter, will paint the background from 
physical matter, shaped as nearly like the Greek as 
possible, and he will paint the Paris and the ladies from 
living models. The work may be perfect technically, but 
where is the Greek part of it ; what, then, does the painter 
rely upon ? Why, the Greek story, for if not why does 
he not call it by a modern name ? But no, he relies upon 
the well-known story the Judgment of Paris in fact he 
is taking the greater part of the merit that belongs to 
another man. The story of the Judgment of Paris is not 
his, yet it is that which draws the public ; and these men 
are called original, and clever, and learned. Jean Francois 
Millet, in one of his scenes of Peasant Life, has more 
originality than all of these others put together. Many 
people, not conversant with the methods of art, think 
artists draw and paint and sculpt things "out of their 
heads." Well, some do, but no good artist ever did. 
We have in our possession a beautiful low relief in marble, 
done from a well-known Italian model in London. The 
work is as good as any work the Greeks did, the type is 
most admirable, and it was done by one of the sternest 
naturalistic sculptors of to-day. 

A highly educated friend, an old Oxford man, called on 
us not long ago, and was greatly taken with the head; after 
looking at it a long while, he turned to us and said, "An 
ideal head, of course ! " So it is the cant of "idealism" runs 
through the world. But we have heard some of the most 
original and naturalistic artists use the word " ideal," 
aiid on pressing them, they admitted it was misleading 

22 Naturalistic Photography. 

to others for them to use the word ; but they meant by it 
simply intellectual, that is, the work of art had been done 
with intelligence and knowledge, but every suggestion 
had been taken from nature. The word ideal, to our 

mind, is so apt to mislead that we shall not use it. 
Irnagina- j dea j work / v 

live work. m T v ^ / . ,, ., . 

impres- J- us Impressionism means the same thing as natu- 

sionism. ralism, but since the word allows so much latitude to the 
artist, even to the verging on absurdity, we prefer the 
term Naturalism, because in the latter the work can always 
be referred to a standard Nature. Whereas if impres- 
sionism is used, the painter can always claim that he sees 
so much, and only so much, of Nature ; and each indi- 
vidual painter thus becomes a standard for himself and 
others, and there is no natural standard for all. A genius 
like Manet tried to work out new ways of looking at nature, 
and that was legitimate, but when weak followers took 
up his " manner " and had not his genius, the result was 
eccentricity. For these reasons, therefore, we prefer and 
have used the term "naturalism " throughout this work. 
But, as we have said, we regard the terms "impres- 
sionism" and "naturalism" as fundamentally synonymous, 
although we think the work of many of the so-called 
modern "impressionists" but a passing craze. 

Inter- The method of rendering a picture as it appears to the 

1Dg ' eye has been called interpreting nature. Perhaps inter- 
preting is as good an expression as any, for the artist in 
his language (for art is only a language) interprets or 
explains his view of nature by his picture. 

Local " The local or proper colour of an object (Korper-farbe) 

Colour. j s ^at which it shows in common white light, while the 
illumination colour (Licht-farbe) is that which is pro- 
duced by coloured light. Thus the red of some sandstone 
rocks, seen by common white light, is their proper local 
colour, that of a snow mountain in the rays of the setting 
sun is an illumination colour." E. Atkinson, Ph.D., 

Low art. See high art. 

Natural- By this term we mean the true and natural expression 
of an impression of nature by an art. Now it will im- 


Terminology. 2 3 

mediately be said that all men see nature differently. 
Granted. But the artist sees deeper, penetrates more 
into the beauty and mystery of nature than the common- 
place man. The beauty is there in nature. It has been 
thus from the beginning, so the artist's work is no 
idealizing of nature; but through quicker sympathies 
and training the good artist sees the deeper and more 
fundamental beauties, and he seizes upon them, " tears 
them out," as Durer says, and renders them on his 
canvas, or on his photographic plate, or on his written 
page. And therefore the work is the test of the man 
for by the work we see whether the man's mind is 
commonplace or not. It is for this reason, therefore, that 
artists are the best judges of pictures, and even a trained 
second-rate painter will recognize a good picture far 
quicker than a layman, though he may not be able to 
produce such a one himself. Of course Naturalism pre- 
misses that all the suggestions for the work are taken 
from and studied from nature. The subject in nature 
must be the thing which strikes the man and moves him 
to render it, not the plate he has to fill. Directly he 
begins thinking how he can fill a certain canvas or plate, 
he is no longer naturalistic, he may even then show he 
is a good draughtsman or a good colourist, but he will not 
show that he is naturalistic. Naturalistic painters know 
well enough that very often painting in a tree or some 
other subject might improve the picture in the eyes of 
many, but they will not put it in because they have not 
tlie tree before them to study from. Again, it has been said 
that arranging a foreground and then painting it might 
improve the picture, but the naturalistic painter says no, 
by so doing " all the little subtleties are lost, which give 
quality to the picture ! " Nature, is so full of surprises 
that, all things considered, she is best painted as she is. 
Aristotle of old called poetry " an imitative art," and we Aristotle. 
do not think any one has ever given a better definition of 
poetry, though the word " imitative " must not in our 
present state of knowledge be used rigidly. The poetry 
is all in nature, all pathos and tragedy is in nature, and 
only wants finding and tearing forth. But there's the 

24 Naturalistic Photography. 

rub, the best work looks so easy to do when it is done. 
Does not Burns* poem ' ' To a mouse " look easy to write ? 
This, then, is what we understand by naturalism, that all 
suggestions should come from nature, and all techniques 
should be employed to give as true an impression of 
nature as possible. 

This is a mightily misused word. Only those artists 
can be called original who have something new to say, 
no matter by what methods they say it. A photograph 
may b.e far more original than a painting. 

Some of the best writers and journalists of the day 
have adopted the use of the word ' ' photographic, " as 
applying to written descriptions of scenes which are ab- 
solutely correct in detail and bald fact, though they are 
lacking in sentiment and poetry. What a trap these 
writers have fallen into will be seen in this work, for 
what they think so true is often utterly false. And, on 
the other hand, photography is capable of producing pic- 
tures full of sentiment and poetry. The word " photo- 
graphic" should not be applied to anything except 
photography. No written descriptions can be " photo- 
graphic/ 1 The use of the word, when applied to writ- 
ing, leads to a confusion of different phenomena, and 
therefore to deceptive inferences. This cannot be too 
strongly insisted upon, as some cultured writers have 
been guilty of the wrong use of the word " photographic/' 
and therefore of writing bad English. 

Quality is used when speaking of a picture or work 
which has in it artistic properties of a special character, 
in a word, artistic properties which are distinctive and 
characteristic of the fineness and subtlety of nature. 

By Naturalism it will be seen that we mean a very 
different thing from Realism. The realist makes no 
analysis, he is satisfied with the motes and leaves out the 
sunbeam. He will, in so far as he is able, paint all the 
veins of the leaves as they really are, and not as they look 
as a whole. For example, the realist, if painting a tree a 
hundred yards off, would not strive to render the tree as 
it appears to him from where he is sitting, but he would 
probably gather leaves of the tree and place them 

Terminology. 25 

before him, and paint them as they looked within twelve 
inches of his eyes, and as the modern Pre-Raphaelite? Pre-Ka- 
did, he might even imitate the local colour of things phaeiites. 
themselves. Whereas the naturalistic painter would care 
for none of these things, he would endeavour to render 
the impression of the tree as it appeared to him when 
standing a hundred yards off, the tree taken as a whole, 
and as it looked, modified as it would be by various 
phenomena and accidental circumstances. The natural- 
ist's work we should call true to nature. The realist's 
false to nature. The work of the realist would do 
well for a botany but not for a picture, there is no 
scope for fine art in realism, realism belongs to the 
province of science. This we shall still further illustrate 
in the following pages. 

Eelative tone or value is the difference in the amount Kelative 
of light received on the different planes of objects when tone and 
compared with one another. 

Artists speak of the " sentiment of nature " as a Senti- 
highly desirable quality in a picture. This means that m ent. 
naturalism should have been the leading ddea which 
has governed the general conception and execution of the 
work. Thus the sentiment of nature is a healthful and 
highly desirable quality in a picture. Thus " true in 
sentiment " is a term of hig-h praise. " Sentiment " is 
really normal sympathetic " feeling." 

As opposed to sentiment, is a highly undesirable genti- 
quality, and a quality to be seen in all bad work. It mentality. 
is an affectation of sentiment, and relies by artificiality 
and mawkishness upon appealing to the morbid and 
uncultured. It is the bane of English art. The one is 
normal, the other morbid. 

Soul = Yis medicatrix = Plastic force = Vital force 
= Vital principle = O. The word is, however, used by 
some of the most advanced thinkers in art, and when 
asked to explain it they say they mean by it " the funda- 
mental." From what we can gather, the word "soul" 
is the formula by which they express the sum total of 
qualities which make up the life of the individual. Thus 
a man when he has got the " soul " into a statue, has 


Naturalistic Photography. 

not only rendered the organic structure of the model, but 
also all the model's subtleties of harmony, of movement 
and expression, and thought, which are due to the 
physical fact of his being a living organism. This 
" life " is of course the fundamental thing, and first 
thing to obtain in any work of art. In this way, then, 
we can understand the use of the word " soul " as synony- 
mous with the " life " of the model. The " soul " or 
life is always found in nature, in the model, and the artist 
seizes upon it first, and subdues all things to it. " Soul," 
then, to us is a term for the expression of the epitome 
of the characteristics of a living thing. The Egyptians 
expressed the "soul" or life of a lion, Landseer did 

By technique is meant, in photography, a knowledge 
of optics and chemistry, and of the preparation and em- 
ployment of the photographic materials by the means 
of which pictures are secured. It does in no way refer 
to the manner of using these materials, that is the 
" practice/' 

To begin with, as this book is for photographers, we 
must tell them they invariably use the word tone in a 
wrong sense. What photographers call " tone J> should 
properly be colour or tint, thus : a brown tint, a purple 
tint, or colour. 

The correct meaning of tone is the amount of light 
received upon the different planes of an object. 

" ' A. mere transcript of nature ' is one of the stock 
phrases of the art critic, and of many artists of a certain 
school. The precise meaning attached to it puzzles us ; 
were it not always used as a term of reproach, we should 
believe it the highest praise that could be bestowed 
upon a picture. What adds to our perplexity is that the 
phrase is generally applied by the critic to work which 
has nothing in common with nature about it : and is 
used by artists who themselves have never in their lives 
painted a picture with the simplest values correct, as 
though transcribing nature to canvas were a stage in the 
painter's development through which they had passed, 
and which was now beneath them. The critic must 

Terminology. 2 7 

have but a very superficial acquaintance with nature 
who applies this term, as is frequently done, to work 
in which all the subtleties of nature are wanting. We 
have heard of pictures in which no two tones have been 
in right relation to one another, in which noisy detail 
has been mistaken for finish, and the mingling of deci- 
sion and indecision in fine opposition the mysterious 
lost and found, the chief charm of nature has been 
utterly unfelt, described as ' transcripts of nature/ Those 
artists who use the phrase, adopt it as a convenient 
barricade behind which they may defend their own in- 
competence." T. F. Goodall. 

All photographers would do well to lay these remarks 
to heart. Instead of it being an easy thing to paint " a 
mere transcript of nature," we shall show it to be utterly 
impossible. No man can do this either by painting or 
photography, he can only give a translation, or impres- 
sion, as Leonardo da Yinci said long ago ; but he can Da Vinci, 
give this impression truly or falsely. 

28 Naturalistic Photography. 



An in- IN this chapter we shall endeavour to trace the influence 

quiry into o f ^ e s t u dy of nature on all the best art up to the pre- 
the mflu- -, "V T , -, ,T ., . n T r 

ence of sent day. ^ n or( ler to do this it will be necessary to 
the study follow in chronological order the development of art, and 
^nature we propose taking as our guide in this matter Messrs. 
Woh- Woltmann and Woermann, who seem the most trust- 
mann and worthy and are the most recent of art historians. We 
Woer- f^ however, that we must state our attitude towards 
them as historians of art. For the main historical facts, 
we willingly accept as authorities these writers, since 
they have studied the matter, but when these historians 
try to trace the causes and effects of different phases of 
art on contemporary life then we entirely part company 
from them, for there are so many wheels within wheels in 
this complex comedy of life that we cannot with patience 
listen to searchers of manuscripts and students of auto- 
graphs, who trace the fall of an empire to an oil painting, 
or the decadence of painting to the cheapness of wheat : 
such dreams may still serve, as they have always served, 
as a peg whereon to hang rhetorical rhapsodies, but they 
can have no attraction for rational minds. What we pro- 
pose, then, is briefly to compile a short outline, consisting 
of the salient facts in the history of art, in so far as they 
bear on our subject, that is, how far the best artists have 
been naturalistic, and how true in impression their 
interpretation of nature. When we agree with any of 
the critical remarks of these gentlemen, we shall quote 
them in full, acknowledging them in the usual way, 

Naturalism in Pictorial and Glyptic Art. 29 

but we reserve to ourselves the right to differ entirely 
from them on artistic points. We ourselves feel much 
diffidence in advancing any critical remarks of our own 
upon these arts, for we are convinced, after a long and 
practical study of the subject, that no one can criticize 
any branch of art and the criticism le authoritative, 
unless he be a practical master artist in the branch of 
art which he is criticizing ; but as our opinions have been 
put to the touchstone of some first-rate practical artists 
in other branches than our own, we offer them, standing 
always ready to be corrected by any good practical artist 
on any point. As to who are good artists is again another 
wide question. Certainly their name is not legion. 

Our object in traversing all this ground, then, is one of Criticism, 
inquiry, to really see how far '* naturalism " is the only 
wear for all good art, and we have done it in an impartial 
spirit, arriving at the conclusion that in all the glyptic 
and pictorial arts the touchstone answers. How far this 
is the case with the arts of Fiction, Poetry, &c., is a more 
complex matter, and one we cannot now deal with, but we 
feel that in the literary arts the matter is very different, 
for in these arts we are not confined, as we are in the 
pictorial and glyptic arts, to physical facts and their re- 
presentation ; for there is no such thing as abstract beauty 
of form or colour. Art has served as a peg on which to 
hang all sorts of fads fine writing, very admirable in its 
place morality, not to be despised classical knowledge 
and literature generally, both of the highest aasthetic 
value, but in no way connected with the glyptic and 
pictorial arts. Naturalistic art has been found and lost, 
and lost and found time after time, and it is because the 
Dutch, French, English and American artists of to-day 
are finding it again that we feel hopeful for the art of the 

Our object is, by these notes, to lead our readers to the Our aim. 
works of art themselves, hoping that by this means they 
will, to some extent, educate themselves and finally form 
independent judgments on art matters. Much of the 
lamentable ignorance existing on these subjects is due 
to the acceptance of the dicta of writers on pictures, with- 

30 Naturalistic Photography. 

out the readers seeing the pictures themselves. We 
earnestly beg 1 , therefore, of any one who may be sufficiently 
interested in the subject as to read this book, that he will 
' go and see the original pictures and sculptures cited ; all 
of which are within easy reach. It was our original in- 
tention to introduce photographic reproductions of the 
best pieces of sculpture, and the best pictures into this 
work, but we have decided against so doing, fearing that 
the reader might be tempted to look at the reproductions 
and neglect the originals, and a translation, however good 
it may be, is but a small part of the truth. In thus ex- 
pressing our conclusions on naturalism in art, we do not 
set up as the preacher of any new gospel. Such opinions 
as ours are as old as the art of ancient Greece, nay older, 
for from the early days of Egypt downwards these ideas 
have been held, we shall find, by great artists in all ages. 
It is only in the application of these ideas to photo- 
graphy, and in attempting to reduce them to scientific 
first principles that we presume to claim any originality. 


Egyptian On examining specimens of Egyptian art, whether it 
be their paintings, architecture, sculpture or book illus- 
trations (the papyri), one is struck by the wonderful 
simplicity, decision and force with which they expressed 
themselves. The history of Egypt has been so little 
studied, save by students of history, and the old popular 
stories concerning the nations of the past are so inaccurate 
and misleading, that one is at first surprised to find such 
power in the works of those whom we were taught, not so 
long ago, to look upon as Philistines ; so that we might 
gaze on the Pyramids of Gizeh, the statues of Kameses, 
and the granite lions, with the wonderment of incompre- 
hension. But now, of course, every one knows that the 
Egyptians were masters in certain directions, where we 
are but in our infancy. Even in their cavi relievi and 
wall paintings, though these latter are but tinted outlines, 
they are not the outlines of childish draughtsmen, weak 
and unmeaning, but they show the force of a powerful 
skill that in one bold outline can give all the essentials of 

Naturalism in Pictorial and Glyptic Art. 31 

a man, bird or beast, so that the picture looks living and 
doing. All through their work there is a bigness of 
conception, a solid grip of nature which makes their 
work surpass many of the elaborately finished and richly 
detailed pictures of our modern art galleries. 

Let us call the reader's attention to such examples as 
are easily to be seen, namely, the granite lions, the cavi B t u died. 
relievi and the papyri in the British Museum. The lions, The lioua. 
which are remarkable for strength of character and truth- 
fulness of impression, may be taken as representative of 
the greatest period of Egyptian art, a period which ended 
about the time of Kanieses II. ; for after that time the 
artist began to neglect the study of nature, and gradual 
decadence set in. 

We strongly advise all our readers to go to the British 
Museum and look well at these lions. They are hewn 
from granite, or porphyry, the hardest of stones, they 
have conventional moustaches, and are lying in conven- 
tional positions, yet withal, there is a wonderful ex- 
pression of life and reserved strength about them which 
makes you respect them, stone though they be ; and they 
convey to you, as you look on their long lithe flanks so 
broadly and simply treated, the truthful impression of 
strong and merciless animals. Your thoughts involun- 
tarily turn from them to Landseer's bronze lions guarding Landaeer's 
Trafalgar Square. In them you remember all the tufts llolls< 
of hair correctly rendered, even to the wool in the ears, 
the mane, the moustaches. Even the claws are there, 
and yet you feel instinctively you would rather meec 
those 1 tame cats of Trafalgar (Square, with all their claws, 
than the Egyptian lions in the British Museum. The 
reason of this is that the Egyptians knew how to epito- 
mize, so as to express the fundamental characteristics of 
the lion, they cared not to say how many hairs went to 
make up the tufted tail, nor yet how many claws each paw 
should have, but what they tried to do, and succeeded in 
doing, was to convey a sense of his power and animalism, 
or to convey, in short, an impression of his nature. 

1 Since this was written Mr. Frith has published that Land- 
seer modelled these lions from a tame cat. 

32 Naturalistic Photography. 

These lions, were the outcome of the best period of 

Egyptian sculpture. The Egyptian artists who carved 

those lions had been striving to interpret Nature, and 

hence their great success ; but as soon as their successors 

began to neglect nature, and took to drawing up rules, 

Barneses they went wrong, and produced caricatures. We read 

dn 3 " khat after the time of Rameses II. "every figure is now 

mathematically designed according to a prescribed canon 

of numerical proportions between the parts." 

Wilkin- All this we can trace for ourselves in the plates sup- 
Tlnoient ^ e ^ with Wilkmson ' s learned work, entitled, "The 
Egyp- ieB Ancient Egyptians." We see in those plates that some- 
tians." thing has happened to the people and objects represented, 
something that makes them no longer tell their own 
story, they no longer look alive, but are meaningless; 
the reason of this falling off was that the artist no longer 
used his eyes to any purpose, but did what was then sup- 
posed to be the right thing to do, namely, followed the 
laws laid down by some men of narrow intellect laws 
called as now the " canons of art." The very life of the 
Egyptian artists of that period was against good work, 
for they were incorporated into guilds, and the laws of 
caste worked as harmfully as they now do in the Orient. 
Artists* There is, then, distinct evidence that on the one hand the 
status. Egyptian artists of the best period, when untrammelled 
by conventionality, created works which, though lacking 
the innumerable qualities of later Greek art, yet possessed, 
so far as they went, the first essential of all art truth of 
impression. Again, on the other hand, directly anything 
like " rules of art " appeared, and the study of nature was 
neglected, their art degenerated into meaningless con- 
ventionality, and as this conventionality and neglect of 
nature were never cast aside, the art of Egypt never 
developed beyond the work done by the artists who 
carved the stone lions. 


Assyrian Assyrian art differed from that of Egypt in that the 
an. outline of the figures was much stronger, and that they 

Naturalism in Pictorial and Glyptic Art. 33 

painted their bas-reliefs ; but the " imitation of nature 
was the watchword " in Assyria, as it was in Babylon. 

In studying the Assyrian bas-reliefs, those interested 
in the subject should go to the Assyrian rooms in the reliefs, 
basement of the British Museum, and look at the reliefs 
of Bani-Pal the famous lion-hunting scenes. There The lion- 
is, of course, much conventionality in the work, as hunt, 
there was in that of the Egyptians ; but no observer 
can fail to detect that the Assyrians were naturalistic 
to a degree that strikes us as marvellous when we 
consider the subjects they were treating. Note the 
lioness, wounded in the spine, dragging her hindquarters 
painfully along. Does this not give a powerful impression 
of the wounded animal ? and does it not occur to you how 
wonderful was the power of the man who in so little ex- 
pressed and conveys to you so much. Consider when those 
Assyrian sculptors lived. Look, too, at the bas-reliefs num- 
bered 47 and 49 ; and in 50 note the marvellous truthful- 
ness of impression of the horseman, who is riding at a 
gallop. There is life and movement in the work, though 
there is much scope for improvement in the truth of the 
movements. Look, too, at the laden mules in bas-reliefs 
numbers 70 and 72. Such works as these were done by 
great men in art, and though crudeness of methods pre- 
vented them from rivalling some of the later work, their 
work is at least honest, and, as far as it goes, naturalistic. 
The work does not say all that there is to say about the 
subject ; but it does say much of what is most essential, 
and by doing that is artistically greater than work done 
by scores" of modern men. In addition to their artistic 
value, how interesting are these works as records of 
history. Indisputable, as written history can never be, Historic 1 
they are to us a valuable record of the life and times. theTas- 
They constitute historical art in its only good sense. reliefs. 


In discussing Greek, painting we shall rely entirely upon 
the erudite historical work of Messrs. Woltmann and Woer- 
mann,giving a short resumt of their remarks on the subject, art. 


Naturalistic Photography. 

No Greek 

of Greek 



This is absolutely necessary, as not one specimen of 
Greek painting has come down to us. 2 Bat on the other 
hand, in dealing with Greek and Graeco-Roman sculpture 
we shall base our remarks on the Greek and Grseco- 
Roman sculpture in the British Museum. 

Beginning then with Greek painting, let us see what 
the historians tell us. They begin by saying, in paint- 
ing " the Greeks effected nothing short of a revo- 
lution. ... by right of which they deserve the glory 
of having first made painting a truthful mirror of 
realities." This fact, that their pictorial art reached such 
perfection, is not generally known, for the reason that 
the assertion rests on written testimony, but it is reliable 
testimony. The historians " insist on the fact that no 
single work of any one of the famous painters recognized 
in the history of Greek art has survived to our time." 
Let us then briefly trace the rise of Greek painting till it 
culminated in Apelles. Polygnotos (B.C. 475-55) is the 
first name we hear of, and of his works we are told, " they 
were just as far from being really complete pictorial repre- 
sentations as the wall-pictures of the Assyrians and Egyp- 
tians themselves/' although in some particulars there must 
have been a distinct advancement on the work of the 
orientals. For example, we are told Polygnotos painted the 
" fishes of Acheron shadowy grey, and the pebbles of the 
river-bed so that they could be seen through the water." 
Polygnotos fell, however, into a pitfall which has en- 
trapped many painters since, he painted imaginative 
pictures. We are told he " was a painter of heroes," 
some of his school attempted portraiture, " but painting 
though in this age was still a mere system of tinted out- 
line design." Then followed Agatharchos, " thedeader of 
a real revolution, a revolution by which art was enabled to 
achieve great and decisive progress towards a system of 
representation corresponding with the laws of optics and 
the full truth of nature." Agatharchos was a scene- 
painter, and was no doubt led by striving for naturalism in 

2 Some paintings quite recently discovered in Egypt are 
apparently the work of Greek artists, and tend to confirm this 
written testimony. 

Naturalism in Pictorial and Glyptic Art. 35 

his scenery to study naturalism in painting generally. 
As the historians remark, " In scene-painting as thus prac- Scene- 
tised, we find the origins not only of all representations painting, 
of determinate backgrounds, but also, and more especially, 
of landscape painting. It is impossible to over-estimate 
the importance of the invention of scene-painting as the 
most decisive turning-point in the entire history of the 
art, and Agatharchos is named as the master who, at the 
inspiration of ^schylus, first devoted himself to prac- 
tising the invention." This painter, it is said, also paid 
great attention to perspective, and left a treatise which Perspec- 
was afterwards used in drawing up the laws of perspective. tlve< 
It is said his manner of treatment was " comparatively 
broad and picturesque/' Next came .Apollodoros, a Apollo- 
figure-painter, who also combined landscape and figure 
subjects, and of whom Pliny says tc that he was the first to 
give the appearance of reality to his pictures, the first to 
bring the brush into just repute, and even that before 
him no easel-picture (tabula) had existed by any master Ea sel- 
fit to charm the eye of the spectator/' Apollodoros was pic 
the first to give his pictures a natural and definite back- 
ground in true perspective ; he was the first, it is 
emphatically stated, " who rightly managed chiaro-oscuro Chiaro- 

and the fusion of colours He will have also oscl 

been the first to soften off the outlines of his figures. . . . 
For this reason we may, with Brunn, in a certain sense Brunn. 
call Apollodoros ' ' the first true painter." We are told, 
however, that his " painting was, in comparison with his 
successors, hard and imperfect/' and that the innovations 
made by him in the relation of foreground and background 
cannot be compared to the improvements effected by the 
brothers Yan Eyck in modern times. We now read of j 

Zeuxis, Parrhasios, and Timanthes, who, we are told, Parrha- 
" perfected a system of pictorial representation, adequately si p s > and 
rendering on the flat surface the relief and variety of 
nature, in other particulars if not in colour." The 
endeavour of Zeuxis was " by the brilliant use of the 
brush to rival nature herself," and from anecdotes related 
of him and of Parrhasios, we gather that they " laid the 
greatest stress on carrying out to the point of actual 

D 2 

36 Naturalistic Photography. 

illusion the deceptive likeness to nature." Many of 
Zeuxis' subjects were taken from everyday life 'another 
step in the right direction. We now come to the Dorian 
school, with Eupompos as its founder ; and here we find 
po g, a determination to study painting scientifically, and to 

conscientiously observe nature, for we are told Eupom- 
pos expressed the opinion " that the artist who wished to 
succeed must go first of all to nature as his teacher." 
Pam hi Pamphilos, a pupil of Eupompos, brought this school to 
lot 1 * maturity, and insisted on the " necessity of scientific study 
Melan- f r the painter." He was followed by Melanthios, who 
thios. pursued the same lines of scientific investigation j and was 
Pausias. ^ n n ^ s turn succeeded by Pausias, of whom we hear, <( It is 
quoted as a novel and striking effect, that in one of his 
pictures the face of Methe (or personified Intoxication) 
was visible through the transparent substance of the glass 
out of which she drank/' His work was considered to have 
great technical excellence, his subjects were taken from 
everyday life, and his pictures were all on a small scale. 
Pliny says " his favourite themes were ' boys/ that is, no 

doubt, scenes of child-life He developed, it seems, 

a more natural method of representing the modelling of 
objects by the gradations of a single colour." We read, 
too, that his paintings drawn fresh from life " were much 
appreciated by the Komans." Such is the case with all 
good naturalistic works, they always interest posterity, 
whereas the so-called imaginative works only interest the 
age for which they are painted. We should to-day prefer 
and treasure as beyond price one of Pausias' studies of 
familiar Greek life, whereas the heroes of Poly gnotos would 
lack interest for us, and excite but little enthusiasm. 
There was a third school of Greek painting, that called the 
The The- The.ban- Attic, and of this we read that there was " a great 
ban-Attic ease and versatility, and an invention more intent upon 
scnool. ^ e expression of human emotion,'' but no painter of this 
school made any very great advance. At length we come 
Apelles. to Apelles, the most famous of all Greek painters. He, 
although already well known and highly thought of, 
went to the Sikyonian school,- to study under Pamphilos, 
and we afterwards hear of him as court painter to Alex- 
ander the Great. 

Naturalism in Pictorial and Glyptic Art. 37 

was to celebrate the person and the deeds of the king, as 
well as those of his captains and chief men." This was 
at any rate legitimate historical painting. Woltmann 
and Woermann say, "In faithful imitation of nature he 
was second to none ; he was first of all in refinement of 
light and shade, and consequent fulness of relief and 
completeness of modelling."" And again we read, 
" Astonishing technical perfection in the illusory imitation 
of nature " distinguished Apelles. Thus we see that the 
great aim of the greatest of Greek painters was to paint 
nature exactly as she is, or as glib critics would say, to 
paint "mere transcripts of nature/' Contemporary with 
Apelles was Protogenes, whose aim was to reach the "high- 
est degree of illusion in detail." The cycle of develop- gen 
ment seemed now to have reached its highest point, and 
as the naturalistic teachings fell into the hands of inferior 
men, they were abused, and Woltmann and Woermann 
tell us the imitative principle was not kept subservient to 
artistic ends, and in the hands of Theon of Samos the Theon. 
principle of illusion became an end iD itself, and art 
degenerated into legerdemain. This same tendency is 
now showing its hydra head, and in London, Brussels, and 
other places are to be seen inferior works hidden in dark 
rooms, or to be viewed through peep-holes. We only 
want the trumpets of Theon or the nmsic of the opera 
bouffe to complete the degradation. Following Theon, and 
probably disgusted with his phantasies, came painters of 
small subjects ; the rhyparographi of Pliny, or the rag- 
and-tatter painters, " who painted barbers' shops, asses, 
eatables, and such-like." tf We see, therefore, that about 
B.C. 300 . . . Greek painting had already extended its 
achievements to almost all conceivable themes, with the 
single exception of landscape. Within the space of a 
hundred and fifty years the art had passed through 
every technical stage, from the tinted profile system 
of Polygnotos to the properly pictorial system of natural 
scenes, enclosed in natural backgrounds, and thence 
to the system of trick and artifice, which aimed at the 
realism of actual illusion by means beyond the legiti- 
mate scope of art/' 

" The creative power of Greek painting was as good 

3 3 Naturalistic Photography. 

as exhausted by this series of efforts. In the following 
centuries the art survived indeed as a pleasant after- 
growth, in some of its old seats, but few artists stand oat 
with strong individuality from among their contempo- 
raries. Only a master here and there makes a name for 
himself. The one of these whom we have here especially 
Timoma- to notice is Timomachos, of Byzantium, an exception of 
chos. undeniable importance, since even at this late period 
of Greek culture he won for himself a world-wide 

Decadence, however, had already set in, and we find 
that Tirnomachos neglected the study of familiar subjects, 
and returned to the so-called imaginative style, producing 
such works as " Ajax and Medea/' and " Iphigenia in 
Taurus/' Curiously enough, it was during this period 
that the only branch of painting not yet tried by the 
Greek Greeks, namely, landscape painting, was attempted, 
landscape Woltmann and Woermann suggest a reason for this 
' mg ' new departure when they say, " We can gather with 
certainty from poetry and literature that it was in the age 
of the Diadochi (the kings who divided amongst them the 
kingdom of Alexander) that the innate Greek instinct of 
anthropomorphism, of personifying nature in human 
forms, from a combination of causes was gradually modi- 
fied in the direction of an appreciation of natural scenes 
for their own sake, and as they really are." Landscape 
painting, however, did not reach any great perfection, 
for we are told it " scarcely got beyond the superficial 
character of decorative work." With this period ends 
the true history of Greek painting, though it still lingers 
on, and becomes so far merged into that of Roman art 
that between the two it is not possible to draw a line 
of distinction. Roman art had a character of its own, 
and even two painters, whose names, Fabius and Ludius, 
Fabius ari( j j n fa e case of the latter whose works, have been 
Ludius. handed down to us ; but the works of Ludius do not 

appear to have been more than decorative work. 

Vases, Besides the written testimony referred to, the state of 

mosaics, art can be gathered from the vases, bronzes, mosaics, 

' ** paintings on stone, and mural decorations which have 

come down to us. These were elm-fly the work of Greek 

Naturalism in Pictorial and Glyptic Art. 39 

journeymen, and though there is much that is excellent 
in these productions, their period of decadence very soon 
set in. It is a gauge of the art knowledge of to-day to 
watch the gullible English and Americans purchasing Antiques 
third-rate copies of the works of Greek journeymen house- for 
decorators, and taking them home and hoarding them as tounsts - 
works of art, works which were only valuable in their 
own time, in connection with the life and architecture 
then existing, but which at the present day are interesting 
merely from an historical point of view, for no really 
artistic mind can possibly find satisfaction in such work 
for its own sake. Did these uncultured buyers but 
reflect and study for a while the natural beauties around 
them, they would soon see the error of their ways. 

In their conclusion on Grgeco-Roman art Woltmann and 
Woermann say that they "have no doubt that Greek painting 
had at last fully acquired the power to produce adequate 
semblances of living fact and nature," which could not be 
said of any painting up to that time. Here then we have 
traced a quick development of Greek painting, and an 
almost equally quick decline, and all through we find the 
never-failing truth, that so long as nature was the 
standard, and all efforts were directed towards interpret- 
ing her faithfully, so long did the national art grow and 
improve till it culminated in the statues of Pheidias and 
the paintings of Apelles ; but that directly nature was 
neglected, as it was in the time of Theon, arfc degenerated, 
till at last it fell, as we shall see, into the meaningless work 
of the early Christian artists. We find even thus early Art criti- 
that the pedantic writer who knows nothing of practical cism * 
art had begun to fill the world with his mysterious non- 
sense. Such were the rhetoricians of the empire who Rhetori- 
describe works " purely anonymous, indeed in many cases cians * 
it is clear that the picture has been invented by the man 
of letters, as a peg whereon to hang his eloquence/-' 

It cannot be too often repeated that technical criticism 
is not authoritative unless made by masters of the 
several arts. 

Let us now proceed to the British Museum, and look Greek and 

at the best specimens of Greek and Graeco-Romau ^ rasco ~ 
i i i Komati 

sculpture as exhibited there, sculpture. 

40 Naturalistic Photography. 

Taking for examination the specimens nearest at hand ; 
we refer to those to be seen in the gallery leading out 
The of the entrance-hall of the British Museum. The busts 

British which strike us most forcibly are those of Nero, Trajan, 
coHeetion ^ u ^ us Hevius Pertinax, Cordianus Africanus, Caracalla, 
, ' Commodus, and Julius Cassar. The bust of Nero (No. 11) 
bust. strikes one by the simplicity and breadth of its treatment, 
combined as these qualities are with the expression of 
great strength and energy. The sculptor has evidently 
gone at his work with a thorough knowledge of the 
technique, and hewn the statue straight from the marble, 
a custom, by the way, followed by only one modern 
sculptor, namely, J. Havard Thomas. Look at the broad 
treatment of the chin and neck of this bust of Nero. 
Nowadays one rarely meets with even living awe-in- 
spiring men, but that marble carries with it such force, 
that, all cold and stony as it is, it creates in you a feeling 
of respect and awe. It should be studied from various 
distances and coigns of vantage, and if well studied it can 
surely never be forgotten. It gives the head of a 
domineering, cruel, sensual, yet strong- man. In the bust 
Trajan's of Trajan (No. 15), we have the same powerful technique 
employed this time in rendering the animal strength 
of a powerful man. With his low forehead, small head, 
and splendid neck, the embodiment of strength, Trajan 
looks down on us somewhat scornfully. Then, too, No. 35, 
Bust of the bust of Publius Hevius Pertinax, is no mask, but a face 
I'ertinax w ^ a brain behind it. You feel this man might speak, and 
if he did, what he had to say would be worth listening to. 
Perhaps for grip of the impression of life this is the best 
of all these busts. Compare it with the mask (it can be 
called nothing else) on the shelf above it, and you will 
see the difference. The portrait busts of Cordianus 
Cordianus Africanus (No. 89) and Caracalla are also marvellous for 
an d liie-like expression. Look well at the cropped head and 

Caracalla. beard of Cordianus from a little distance, and see how 
true and life-like the impression is ; then go up close and 
see how the hair of the beard is rendered. It is done by 
chipping out little wedges of the marble. Here is a very 
good example of the distinction between what is called 

Naturalism in Pictorial and Glyptic Art. 41 

i-ealism&nd naturalismor impressionism f ior the two last we 
hold to be synonymous, though for lucidity we have denned 
them differently. If all the detail of that beard had been 
rendered, every hair or curl correctly cut to represent a 
hair or curl, and this is what the modern Italian sculptor 
would have done, we should have had realism and bad 
work. This should be borne in mind in portrait photo- 
graphy, that the essence, the true impression, is what is 
required; the fundamental is all that counts; the rest is 
small, niggling, contemptible. 

Let us turn to No. 33, the sensual face of Commodus, 
he re-lives in the marble. Another very notable bust c ] us 
is that of Homer (No. 11 7), in the corner of the gallery at Bugt of 
right angles to that we are leaving. Look how truly Homer, 
the impression is rendered of the withered old literary 
man ; how the story of his long life is stamped on his face, 
the unmistakable look of the studious, contemplative man. 

Pass we now to the next gallery, and stop at the wonder- 
fully fine torso, No. 172. Look well at this beautiful T g an ^ 
work, so feelingly, sympathetically, and simply treated boy and 
by the sculptor. You can almost see the light glance as thorn, 
the muscles glide beneath the skin. This is a marvellous 
natural work, as is also the boy pulling out a thorn from 
.his foot. The young satyr (No. 184) is also a wonderfully Young 
fine piece of sculpture, and well worth close study. The Sat 7 r - 
student will have ample opportunity for studying, side by 
side, in this gallery, bad stone cutting and fine sculpture, 
for many of the fine marbles have been barbarously re- 
stored. As an example, we cite the lifeless, stony arms 
of No. 188, which compare with the rest of the figure, 
look at the india-rubber finger of the right hand, and 
you will understand what bad work is, if you did not 
know it already. Before leaving this gallery let the 
reader look at No. 159, the Apotheosis of Homer. Now, Apotheo- 
as can be imagined, this is the delight of the pedantic 
critic, and more ignorant rhapsodies have been written on 
this work than perhaps on any other piece of sculpture. 
Of course, as any candid and competent observer will see, 
this is, as a work of art, very poor, and hardly worth talking 
about, except as a warning. In passing into the gallery 

Naturalistic Photography. 



where are the remains of the Parthenon frieze, notice an 
archaic nude torso which stands on the left, and see how the 
artist was feeling his way to nature. All portions of the 
Parthenon frieze should be most carefully studied. The 
animals in 60 and 61 are fairly true, as in fact is the 
whole work. It was on seeing one of Muybridge's photo- 
graphs of a man cantering on a bare-backed horse, that a 
sculptor remarked to us, " I wonder if the Greeks knew of 
photography." And yet critics and feeble artists call 
this work ideal, and declare they discover imaginary 
groupings according to geometrical laws, and heaven 
knows what ; all of which the best sculptors deny. The 
student must now look at the " Horse of Selene," one of 
the most marvellous pieces of work ever done by man. It 
was a long time before we could see the full beauty and 
truthfulness of impression of this great work, and the 
reason was due to a simple physical fact. We stood too 
near to it. To see it well you should stand about twenty 
or thirty feet off, and out of the grey background you will 
see the marble horse tossing its living head, and you will 
be spell-bound. Having observed the truthfulness of 
impression, go to it close up, and note the wonderful-truth 
with which the bony structure of the skull is suggested 
beneath the skin. We can say no more than that it is a 
true impression taken direct from nature, for in no other 
way could it have been obtained. Nothing ideal about it 
at all, simply naturalism. 

Much nonsense has been written, too, about " idealism" 
in Greek coins. To us they seem simply impressions 
taken from busts or other works; but to make assurance 
doubly sure, we have taken the opinion of two of the 
very best modern sculptors, who are, we venture to 
prophesy, going to show us as good work as any done 
by the Greeks, and in many ways even better work. 3 
Well, their opinion as to " idealism " in Greek sculp- 
ture is emphatically that it existed not. They say that 
the Greeks were naturalistic, the study of nature 

3 All old work is to be surpassed, and that in the fundamental 
matter of movement. This advance is entirely due to Photo- 

Naturalism in Pictorial and Glyptic Art. 43 

was the mainspring of their art, and the truthful 
expression of the poetry of nature their sole end and 
aim. That they attained this end in many ways we 
know, and in certain ways they will never be surpassed, 
but in other directions their work will one day appear 

We do not attempt to give a detailed technical Technical 
criticism of sculpture as executed by the Greeks, for, criticism - 
as we have said before, none but a first-rate sculptor can 
do that ; and as there are not half a dozen such in 
England, and as they have quite enough work to do at 
present, we fear the public will have to wait some time 
for such criticism. In the meantime those interested in 
the subject cannot do better than study the works men- 
tioned, and let them leave all others alone ; let them 
spend days in studying those pointed out, and they will 
soon find themselves able to distinguish good work from 
bad. Then, if they want a good shock, let them walk 
into the Gibson Gallery at Burlington House, for there gaiiery. 
they will see nothing but bad work. 

There is one point to be borne in mind when we look 
at the surpassing beauty of the Greek statues, and that is 
the natural beauty of the Greek race, and the number 
of excellent models the Greek sculptors had before them to 
choose from. Taine,in his charming but atechnical volume Tame ' 
on " La Philosophie de 1'art Grec," goes as thoroughly 
into this question as a historian and philosopher can enter 
into the life of the past, and into art questions, which 
in our opinion is to a very limited extent. Nevertheless, 
his book is full of suggestions, and if our sculptors do not 
to-day equal in beauty the antiques, the cause, in our 
opinion, lies in the lack of perfect models, for the best 
technical work of to-day we think is superior to that of 
the Greeks. We have seen impressionistic renderings of 
nature by some modern sculptors which we think more 
natural in all points than anything of the kind to be found 
in Greek sculpture. 

Like the Greeks have the leading men of the modern Modern 
French school adhered to nature, a school in our mind French 
more akin to the Greek school at its best than any other, sc 

44 Naturalistic Photography* 

and for the simple reason that it is more loyal to nature 
than any art has been since the time of Apelles. As an 
example of the kinship between the two schools we quote 
Woltmann and Woermann, who tell us the Greeks " placed 

Horizon- their horizon abnormally high according to our ideas ; 

Hue. an( j distributed the various objects over an ample space 

in clear and equable light." Now modern painters have 
happily discarded all laws for the position of the horizon- 
line, and common sense shows that the height of the 
horizon naturally depends on how much foreground 
is included in the picture. The angle included by the 
eye vertically as well as horizontally varies with the dis- 
tance of the object from us, and the only law therefore is 
to include in the picture as much as is included by the 
eye ; and this of course varies with the position of the 

Millet. motif or chief point of interest. Millet has a good many 
high horizons, and we feel they are normal not abnormal. 
On this point therefore we think the Greeks were very 


5f r1 / . Leaving Greek art, we now come to the art of the 

artu early Christians. Woltmann and Woermann tell us that 

" Early Christian art does not differ in its beginnings from 
the art of antiquity. . . . The only perceptible differ- 
ences are those differences of subject which betoken 
tne fact that art has now to embody a changed order 
of religious ideas, and even from this point of view 
the classical connection is but gradually, and at first 
imperfectly, severed. ... At the outset Christianity, as 
was inevitable from its Jewish origin, had no need for art. 
In many quarters the aversion to works of material 
imagery . . . the antagonism to the idolatries of antiquity 
remained long unabated. Yet when Christianity, far 
outstepping the narrow circle of Judaism, had been taken 
up by classically educated Greeks and Romans, the preju- 
dice against works of art could not continue to be general, 
nor could Christendom escape the craving for art which 
is common to civilized mankind. The dislike of images 
used as objects of worship did not include mere chamber 

Naturalism in Pictorial and Glyptic Art. 45 

decorations, and while independent sculpture found no 
footing in the Christian world, or at least was applied 
only to secular and not to religious uses, painting, on the 
other hand, found encouragement for purely decorative 
purposes, in the execution of which a characteristically 
Christian element began to assert itself by degrees." 

The pure Christian element began to assert itself 
silently in decorative work in the catacombs, and " these The cata- 
cemeteries are the only places in which we find remains of com 8 ' 
Christian paintings of earlier date than the close of the 
fourth century/' These works, however, " constituted no 
more than a kind of picture writing/' as any one who has 
leen them can certify. But this symbolism got very 
'nixed with pagan stories, and we get Orpheus in a 
Phrygian cap, and Hermes carrying a ram, both represent- 
ing the Good Shepherd. At other times the artists seem 
to have set themselves to represent a Christ constructed 
on their knowledge of the attributes ascribed to him, and 
we get a beardless youth approaching fi closely to the 
kindred types of the classical gods and heroes. " " Mary 
appears as a Roman matron, generally praying with 
uplifted hands. }} Peter and Paul " appear as ancient 
philosophers/' and -the well-known bronze statue of St. g^ Peter's 
Peter, in the cathedral dedicated to him at Rome, is no statue at 
less than a bond fide antique statue of a Roman consul. Kome - 
Here we have the same neglect of nature, and the bad 
work always to be expected from this neglect and from 
enslaved minds. 

The mosaics of Christian art were also handed down Mosaics. 
from classical antiquity. Though rarely found in the 
catacombs, this art was being much used above ground 
for architectural decoration. This art, as Woltmann and 
Woermann rightly say, was " only a laborious industry, 
which by fitting together minute coloured blocks 
produces a copy of a design, which design the workers 
are bound by. They may proceed mechanically, but not 
so flimsily and carelessly as the decorative painters." 
From about A.D. 450 we are told that church pictures 
become no longer only decorative, but also instructive. 
Here then was a wrong use of pictorial art it is not meant 

46 Naturalistic Photography. 

to be symbolic and allegorical, or to teach, but to interpret 
the poetry of nature. 

A new conception of Christ it seems now appeared 

in the mosaics, a bearded type, and this time we get the 

features of Zeus represented. By means of the mosaics a 

new impulse was given to art, and in A.D. 375 a school 

The was founded by the Emperors Valentinian, Valens, and 

emperors' Gratian, of which we read, " The schools of art now once 

school. more encourage the observance of traditions ; strictness 

of discipline and academical training were the objects 

kept in view ; and the student was taught to work, not 

independently by study from nature, but according to 

the precedent of the best classical models/' 

Byzantine At this time art, though lying under the influence of 
art. antique traditions, held its own for a longer time in 

Byzantium, where the decorative style of the early 
Christians lived on after the iconoclastic schism in the 
eighth century, and where we read that this ornamental 
style began to be commonly employed. After the age of 
Justinian. Justinian (which itself has left no creation of art at 
Rome), many poor and conventional works were executed 
at Ravenna. We read that for " lack of inner life and 
significance, amends are attempted to be made by material 
splendour, brilliancy of costume, and a gold groundwork, 
which had now become the rule here as well as in Byzan- 
tium." Thus we see the artists became completely lost in 
confusion since they had left nature, and they knew not 
what to do, but, like many weak painters of the present 
day, tried to make their work attractive by meretricious 
ornaments, and true art there was none. This is carried 
out to-day to its fullest development by many men of 
medium talent, who make pictures in far countries, or of 
popular resorts, or religious subjects, and strive to appeal, 
and do appeal to an uneducated class, through the sub- 
ject of their work, which in itself may be a work of the 
poorest description. 

We read that in the year 640, "the superficial and 
Mosaics, unequal character of mosaic workmanship increased 
Minia- quickly.-" The miniatures of the early Christians, however, 
tures. we are told, showed considerable power, but the icono- 

Naturalism in Pictorial and Glyptic Art. 47 

clastic schism brought all this to an end. " The gibes of 
the Mohammedans " were the cause of Leo the Third's 
edict against image worship in A.D. 726. All the pictures 
in the Bast were destroyed by armed bands, and the 
painters thrown into prison, and so ended Byzantine 
art. This movement did not affect Italian art. 


We have followed Messrs. Woltmann and Woermann Medieval 
closely in their account of the decadence of art from the 
greatest days of Greek sculpture and painting to the end 
of the Christian period ; but as our object is avowedly 
only to deal with the best art that which is good for all 
time and to see how far that is naturalistic or otherwise, 
we shall speak but briefly of (the main points connected 
with) mediaaval art, which has but little interest for 
us until we come to Niccola Pisano, and Giotto. During 
the early years of what are called the Middle Ages, 
miniaturists were evolving monstrosities from their own Minia- 
inner consciousness, but with Charlemagne, who said, fcunsts - 

" We neither destroy pictures nor pray to them," the Charle - 

. , . Y 01 magne. 

standard adopted was again classical antiquity, bo art 

continuously declined until it became a slave to the Church, 
and the worst phase of this slavery was to be seen in the 
East, under Ivan the Terrible, for we read that " artists 
were under the strictest tutelage to the clergy, who chose 
the subjects to be painted, prescribed the manner of 
the treatment, watched over the morality of the painters, 
and had it in their power to give and refuse commissions. 
Bishops alone could promote a pupil to be a master, and it 
was their duty to see that the work was done according 
to ancient models/' Here was indeed a pretty state of 
things, a painter to be watched by a priest ; to have his 
subjects selected for him ! One cannot imagine anything 
more certain to degrade art. Religion has ever been on the 
side of mental retrogression, has ever been the first and 
most pertinacious foe to intellectual progress, but perhaps 
to nothing has she been so harmful as to art, unless it has 
been to science. 

Naturalistic Photography. 




During the period of this slavery, the Church used art 
as a tool, as a disseminator of her tenets, as a means of 
imparting religious knowledge. Very clever of her, but 
very disastrous for poor art. 

How conventional art was during the Romanesque period 
can be seen in the glass paintings that decorate many of 
the old churches, to admire which crowds go to Italy and 
waste their short time in the unhealthy interiors of 
churches, instead of spending it at Sorrento or Capri. 
These go back to their own country, oppressed with dim 
recollections of blue and red dresses, crude green land- 
scapes, and with parrot-like talks of " subdued lights," 
" rich tones mellowed by time/' and such cant. 

The Romanesque style of architecture was superseded 
in the fourteenth century by the Gothic. A transforma- 
tion took place in art and France now took the lead. The 
painters of this period emancipated themselves from the 
direction of the priesthood a great step indeed. The 
masters of this age were specialists ; the guilds now ruled 
supreme in art matters. We read that " now popular 
sentiment began to acknowledge ttat the artist's own 
mode of conceiving a subject had a certain claim, side by 
side with tradition and sacerdotal prescription. . . . 
They took their impressions direct from nature," but 
their insight into nature was scanty. As Messrs. Wolt- 
mann and Woermann very truly remark, " If for the 
purpose of depicting human beings, either separately or 
in determined groups and scenes, the artist wishes to 
develop a language for the expression of emotion, there 
is only one means open to him a closer grasp and 
observation of nature. In the age which we are now 
approaching, the painter's knowledge of nature remains 
but scanty. He does not succeed in fathoming and 
mastering her aspects ; but his eyes are open to them so 
far as is demanded by the expressional phenomena which 
it is his great motive to represent ; since it is not yet for 
their own sakes, but only for the sake of giving expres- 
sion to a particular range of sentiments that he seeks to 
imitate the reaiiilds of the world/* 

There was a struggle at this p'^-ior? for the study of 

Naturalism in Pictorial and Glyptic Art. 49 

nature, and the tyranny of the Church was being 
thrown off ; there was then hope that art would at last 
advance, and advance it did. What was wanting was a 
deeper insight into nature, for nature is not a book to be 
read at a glance, she requires constant study, and will not 
reveal all her beauties without much wooing. And 
though we read of a sketch-book of this time, the teenth 
thirteenth century, in which, appears a sketch of a lion, century 
which " looks extremely heraldic," and to which the sketclt - 
artist has appended the remark, "N.B. Drawn from 
life/' this in no way surprises us, for have we not been 
seriously told in this nineteenth century by the painters 
of catchy, meretricious water-colours, with reds, blues 
and greens such as would delight a child, that they had 
painted them from nature ; pictures in which no two tones 
were correct, in which detail, called by the ignorant, 
finish, had been painfully elaborated, whilst the broad 
facts of nature had been ignored. Such work is generally 
painted from memory or photographs. Happily work of 
this kind will never live, however much the gullible 
public may buy it. Next we read that " the germs of realism 
already existing in art by degrees unfold themselves 
further, and artists venture upon a closer grip of nature." 
Here, then, were the signs of coming success, and the 
great effect of these gradual changes was first manifested 
in the work of Niccola Pisano, who " made a sudden and Niccola 
powerful return to the example of the antique/' All 
honour to this man, who was an epoch-maker, who based 
his conception " upon a sudden and powerful return to the 
example of the antique, 'of the Eoman relief/' His work 
is by no means naturalistic or perfect, but it was enough 
for one man to do such a herculean task as to ignore his 
own times and rise superior to them. Painting, however, 
took no such quick turn, but Cimabue was the first of Cimabue. 
those who were to bring it into the right way. The 
principal works ascribed to him, however, are not 

Another epoch -maker, Giotto, now appears. He seems Giotto, 
to have been a remarkable man in himself, which however 

hardlv concerns us. The historian of his works says, 

jg. . ' 

%' OF THE 

50 Naturalistic Photography. 

" The bodies still show a want of independent study of 
nature; the proportions of the several members (as we 
know by the handbook of Cemieno hereafter to be men- 
tioned) were regulated by a fixed system of measurement;" 
again, "The drawing is still on the whole conventional, 
and the modelling not carried far." His trees and animals 
are like toys. Yet we read that " their naturalism is the 
very point which the contemporaries of Giotto extol in 
his creations/' but, as Woltmann and Woermann say, 
this must be accepted according to the notion enter- 
tained of what nature was, and we are by this means able 
to see how crude the notions of nature can become in 
educated men when they neglect the study of it. But 
from all this evidence we gather that Giotto's intellect 
was great, and that his strides towards the truthful 
suggesting of nature were enormous. His attempts too 
at expression are wonderful for his age, see his " Presenta- 
tions/' the figures are almost natural notwithstanding their 
crude drawing ; he got some of the charm and life of the 
children around him. We read that in some of his pic- 
tures, he took his models direct from nature, as also did 
Dante in his poetry, but like Dante he attempted at times 
the doctrinal in his pictures, as in the " Marriage of St. 
Francis and Poverty/' he tried in fact what many moderns 
are still trying to do, and daily fail to do, namely, to teach 
by means of their pictures a fatal error. Doctrinal sub- 

?'ects are unsuitable for pictorial art, and will never 
ive. Who cares now for Giotto's " Marriage of St. 
Francis and Poverty " ? but who would not care for 
a landscape or figure subject taken by Giotto from the 
life and landscape of his own times ? it would be 
priceless. Owing to circumstances, we hear that he 
had to put " much of his art at the service of the 
Franciscans/' and though not a slave to them, yet we read 
this disgusted him with the monkish temper. In 1337 
Giotto died, but he had done much. Without Kepler 
there might have been no Newton, so without Giotto 
there might have been- no Velasquez. 

The guilds. Artists at this time belonged to one of the seven higher 
of the twenty-one guilds into which Florentine crafts- 

Naturalism in Pictorial and Glyptic Art. 51 

men were divided, namely, that of the surgeons and 
apothecaries (medici and speziali). Here art and science 
were enrolled in the same guild, and so were connected, 
as they always will be, for the study of nature is at the 
foundation of both, the very first principle of both. To- 
gether they have been enslaved, persecuted, and their pro- 
gress hampered ; together they have endured ; and now 
to-day together they stand out glorious in their achieve- 
ments, free to study, free to do. The one is lending a 
hand to the other, and the other returns the help with 
graceful affection. Superstition, priestcraft, tyranny, 
all their old persecutors are daily losing power, and will 
finally perish, as do all falsehoods. 

We thus leave the art of the Middle Ages, as we left Summary, 
the catacombs, with a wish never to see any more of it. 
One feels the deepest sympathy for great intellects like 
Giotto, and his greatest followers, whose lots were cast 
in times of darkness, and we cannot but respect such as 
struggled with this darkness, and fought to gain the road 
to nature's fountains of truth and beauty. But at the same 
time, though we may in these pictures see a graceful pose 
here, a good expression there, or a beautiful and true bit of 
colour or quality elsewhere, yet we cannot get away from 
the subject-matter of many of the pictures, which, alle- 
gorical and doctrinal as they are, do not lie within thf* 
scope of art, and above all one cannot in any way get 
rid of the false sentiment and untruthfulness of the 
whole work. Such works will always be interesting to 
the historian and to the philosopher, but beyond that, 
to us they are valueless, and we would far rather possess 
a drawing by Millet than a masterpiece by Giotto. 

When abroad, and being actually persuaded of their 
great littleness, we have been moved with pity for the 
victims we have met, victims of the pedant and the guide- 
book, who are led by the nose, and stand gaping before 
middle-age monstrosities, whilst some incompetent pre- 
tender pours into their ears endless cant of grace, spiri- 
tuality, lustrous colouring, mellifluous line, idealism, et id 
genus omne } until, bewildered and sick at heart, they return 
borne to retail their lesson diluted, and to swell the number 

E 'J. 

52 Naturalistic Photography. 

of those who pay homage at the shrine of pedantry and 
mysticism. Had these travellers spent their short and 
valuable time in the fields of Italy, they would have "learnt 
more art/' whatever they may mean by that term of 
theirs, than they ever did in the bourgeois Campo Santo 
or dark interior of Santa Croce or Santa Maria Novella. 
Alas ! that the painters of the Middle Ages were unable 
to paint well. Had they been able to paint, as can some 
of the moderns, and had they painted truthfully the life 
and landscape around them, there is no distance some 
of us would not go to see a gallery of their works : 
works showing men and women as they were, and as 
they lived, and in their own surroundings. There at 
once would have been the pictures, the history, and the 
idyllic poetry of a bygone age ; and what have we now 
in their place ? Diluted types of repulsive asceticism, sen- 
timental types of ignorance and credulity, pictures 
hideous and untrue and painful to gaze upon, lies and 
libels on our beautiful world, and on our own race. And 
whom have we to thank for this ? Religion the so- 
called encourager of truth, charity, and all that is 
beautiful and good. 


Before beginning the renascence we must glance 

through Mohammedan, Chinese, and Japanese art. 

MoHam- With Mohammedan art we have little to do, as it was 

medau entirely decorative. It is seen at its best in the 

Art - Alhambra, and was not the outcome of any study of 

nature. The Arabian mind seems to have been unable 

to rise beyond a conventional geometrical picture-writing. 

Such minds are seen to-day in all countries amongst the 

undeveloped. Quite recently we have seen some of the 

best modern negro work from the West Coast of Africa ; 

there too was the love of geometrical ornamentation as 

strong as in the Arabian art. We repeat, this artistically- 

Art speaking low standard of development is often seen 

thePW- among the people of to-day, and though highly educated 

listines. in all else, in art they are uneducated, in short they 

are survivals ; and the mischief is, that they judge pic- 

Naturalism in Pictorial and Glyptic Art. 53 

tares by their survival decorative standard ; they look 
for bright colours placed in Persian-rug juxtaposition, 
and talk of " glorious colouring/' It never seems to 
occur to them what art really is, and what the artist has 
tried to express, and how well he has expressed it ; and 
they never refer their " glorious colouring " to the in- 
fallible standard nature; but seem to imagine there 
are abstract standards of colour and form. " Glorious 
colourings" are oftener than not meretricious lies 
dressed out in gaudiest, vulgarest apparel, and when 
compared with nature these " colourings " will be found Water- 
veritable strumpets. Look carefully at many of the colours - 
much-vaunted water-colours, and then carefully study 
the same scene in nature, and if many of those water- 
colours please you afterwards well, in matters artistic, 
you have the taste of a frugivorous ape. But apply this 
test to the water-colours of Israels or Mauve, and you 
will see they interpret nature. But they have painted 
chiefly in oils, and wisely so, as there is more to be 
expressed by oil-painting, and we know of few, if any, 
great men who confine themselves to water-colour as a 
medium. But it serves the turn of a host of men 
painters, but not artists, who, with their pretty paints, 
make pot-boilers, of which the form and idea are often 
stolen stolen, perhaps, from a photograph. Do such ever 
study nature ? No. They sit at home, and coin vulgar 
counterfeits with no more of nature in them than the 
perpetrators have of honesty. It is time that it was 
clearly and distinctly understood that the man who 
copies a photograph is as despicable as the man who 
copies a painting, and it is very certain neither will ever 
be respected by his contemporaries, or remembered by 
his successors. Yet the " cheap " work of these men 
sells well, and the gulled public talk glibly over them of 
" strength " and " tone " and " colouring," and what 
not. Nature is so subtle and astonishing in her facts 
that but few even of those who do paint directly from 
her can come anywhere near her, whereas, those who do 
not study her at all, who do not paint cor am ipse, fake 
and fake, and by faking they lie, and set the example 

54 Naturalistic Photography. 

to others to lie, and, if not fought against, this sort of 
thing would speedily take us back to the art of the 
Middle Ages, when we should be under the tyranny of 
Croesus, instead of Clericus. 

Picture- It is, then, the absolute duty of every picture-buyer, 

buyers. who has any regard for truth, and any interest in the 

future of art, to learn to study nature carefully, and to 

buy only that which is true and sincere, and let the 

pink and white school of dishonesty die of inanition. 

In short, it is high time that educated people ceased 
to judge painting as they often do, by the standard of 
coloured rugs. This talk of " colour " is one of the stum- 
bling-blocks of the weak-kneed in art. Colour is good 
so long as it is true, and no longer. A Persian rug, or 
Turkey carpet, is not the standard of colour whereby to 
judge pictures, and only those in the mental state of 
the frugivorous ape or the Arab craftsmen can think 


China and In China and Japan things were very different. Fol- 
Japan. lowing Mr. Anderson's invaluable work, the " Pictorial 
period Arts of Japan," we find that their history of pictorial art 
begins about A.D. 457. Mr. Anderson thinks, however, 
that art was only actually planted in Japan with the in- 
troduction of Buddhism in the sixth century. Then it 
begins badly, for it was under the influence of religion, 
and in fact we read that the earliest art consisted of 
Buddhism. Buddhist images and mural decorations. This religious 
influence, together with a servile imitation of the Chinese 
masters, so enslaved art, that no development of import- 
ance took place till the end of the ninth century. 
The Looking at the plate of the <e Ni O," a wooden 

" Ni o." statue considered the greatest work of the time, we 
can see the artist had really struggled to interpret 
nature, and no doubt studies were made from the nude, 
for the work on the anatomy could not otherwise have 
been so well expressed ; but, good as it is, it run in the 
Michael Angelo spirit, is exaggerated, and lacks entirely 
all the greatness of the Greek sculpture. This work 

Naturalism in Pictorial and Glyptic Art. 55 

the greatest of what Mr. Anderson has called the first 
period shows that there had been a struggle towards 
the expression of nature. 

The second period, we learn, ends with, the fourteenth Second 
century, and is parallel, therefore, with the European P enod - 
medieval period. On comparing plates of the Japanese 
work with that of the same period in Europe, we are 
forced to give the palm to the Japanese artists, they 
were, in fact, vastly superior, In looking at the plate 
of " The Death of Kose No Hirotaka" we cannot but 
feel there was much more respect for nature in Japan 
than there was in Europe at that time, notwithstanding 
the fact that Buddhism bore the same relation to art in 
Japan as Christianity did in Europe. We read also that 
in the twelfth century there was one, Nobuzane, who Nobuzane. 
had a brilliant reputation for " portraits and ether 
studies from Nature." The specimen of Nobuzane's 
work is admirable in expression, he has caught the living 
expression of his model, but the rest is conventional. 
We are told that the Chinese renascence began about Chinese 
1275, and that the painters of this movement were renas- 
naturalistic, " Ink sketches of birds and bamboos, por- c 
traits and landscapes were the subjects chosen," and 
though these were only a kind of picture-writing, yet 
the movement led the artists more and more to study 

Coming now to Mr. Anderson's third period, from the Third 
end of the fourteenth century to the last quarter of the period, 
eighteenth, we find that Meicho seems to have been to Meicho. 
Japanese art what Giotto was to European art, and at about 
the same period. We read further on that in the early part 
of the fifteenth century the revived Chinese movement 
referred to made its influence felt in Japan. An ex- 
ample given by Mr. Anderson of Shitibun's idealized 
landscape painting, while far from satisfactory or even 
pleasing, is, we venture to think, superior to the work of 
Giotto. Therein is shown some power, and there is not 
the childishness which is visible in Giotto's work. Much 
more naturalistic, powerful, and pleasing are the works of 
Soga Jasoku, fifteenth-century Chinese school. These 

56 Naturalistic Photography. 

landscapes show the artist had a feeling for nature, and 
although he attempted in the upper plate (Plate 16) what 
we consider to be beyond the scope of art, yet in 
the lower the master-hand shows itself. There is atmo- 
sphere in the picture. Close observation of nature re- 
sulted in a grasp of subtlest movement and expression. 

Soga Witness the "Falcon and Egret" by Soga Chokuan 

Chokuan. (sixteenth century), where the power shown in depicting 
the grasp of the falcon's talon as it mercilessly crushes the 
helpless egret, is very great. Then look at the paintings 
of birds in any of our books, and see how wooden, how 
lifeless they are, compared with even the sixteenth- 
century Japanese representations of bird life. 

Sesshiu. Sesshiu, we are told, was another great painter, and 
the founder of a school (1420 1509). This great man, we 
are told, " did not follow in the footsteps of the ancients, 
but developed a style peculiar to himself. His power 
was greatest in landscape, after which he excelled most 
in figures, then in flowers and birds/' and later on, we are 
told, in animals. He preferred working in monochrome, 
and it is said asserted " the scenery of nature was his 
final teacher/'' 

soTol Then came the Kano School, all of whose artists 

evidently struggled for Naturalism, and had great power of 
expression of movement but not of form. The leader, we 
are told, was an eclectic, and painted Chinese landscapes 
in Japan, so that he must have neglected nature, and his 
works belong to the so-called imaginative or unnatural 
school. The best men of this period were decidedly im- 
pressionists, and their chief aim seems to have been to 
give the impression of the scene and neglect the details, 
and it is perfectly marvellous how well they succeeded in 
depicting movement by a very few lines. The "Rain 
Scene " by Kano Tanyu is a fine example of this. 

We read that the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries 
were periods of decadence ; we conclude therefore that in 
Japan art reached its highest state during the second 
period, under Shiubun, Soga Jasoku, Sesshiu and Tanyu, 
who were all students of nature, and several of whom 
would have been called impressionists had they painted 
in these days. 

Naturalism in Pictorial and Glyptic Art. 57 

We are told that Matahei tried to found a naturalistic Matahei. 
school, whose followers should go direct to nature for 
their subjects, but the movement did not receive any 
hearty impulse. However it was taken up afterwards by 
a series of book-illustrators. Next we read of Kdrin Korin. 
whose " works demonstrate remarkable boldness of in- 
vention, associated with great delicacy of colouring, and 
often .... masterly drawing and composition/' It 
is quite marvellous to see the work of this seventeenth- 
century artist. 

Winding up his account of the third period, Mr. 
Anderson says, " But three-quarters of the eighteenth 
century were allowed to pass without a struggle on the 
part of the older schools to elevate the standard of their 
art, and painting was beginning to languish into inanition 
when the revolutionary doctrines of a naturalistic school 
and of a few artisan book-illustrators brought new aims 
and new workers to inaugurate the last and most 
characteristic period of Japanese art." 

Mr. Anderson says, "The fourth and last erabeganabout Fourth 
thirty years before the close of the last century, with the period, 
rise of the Shijo naturalistic school of painting in Kioto, Shijo 
and a wider development of the artisan popular school in scho01 - 
Yedo and Osaka, two steps which conferred upon Ja- 
panese art the strongest of those national characteristics 
that have now completed its separation from the parent 
art of Amia." 

He goes on to say "that the study of nature was ad- 
mitted to be the best means of achieving the highest 
result in art by the older painters of China and Japan, 
but they limited its interpretation/' 

We are told that Maruyama Okio was the first painter okio. 
who seriously endeavoured to establish naturalistic art 
(1733 1795). He preached radical ideas in art at Kioto, 
the centre of Japanese conservatism, and gathered a 
school around him. In summing up this school, Mr. 
Anderson remarks, " The chief characteristics of the Shijo 
school are a graceful flowing outline, freed from the 
arbitrary mannerisms of touch indulged in by many of 
the older masters ; comparative, sometimes almost ab- 
solute, correctness in the interpretation of the forms of 

Naturalistic Photography. 


art at the 


C o minis - 


animal life ; and lastly, a light colouring, suggestive of 
the prevailing tones of the objects depicted, and full 
of delicate harmonies and gradations." Their natural- 
istic principles do not, however, seem to have fully de- 
.veloped, and their works show ignorance of the scientific 
facts of nature, except, perhaps, in the painting of plants, 
birds, and animals. Yet the work has a verve which 
renders it very fascinating. 

One great man, Hokusai, appears as the last of the 
race purely Japanese and uninfluenced by European 
ideas, as all the Japanese artists are now. 

So we find that through various phases the Japanese 
developed to impressionistic landscape-painting, and no 
doubt when they have got more scientific knowledge, 
they will make for themselves, by their wonderful origi- 
nality and patience, a position in art which will surpass 
all their past efforts. 

Since writing this section, a collection of Japanese and 
Chinese art has been opened at the British Museum, 
which the student must by all means study, for there he 
will see works of most of the masters cited in these notes. 
In connection with this subject our readers may have 
seen the very interesting report on Art by the Japanese 
Commission that visited the galleries and schools of 
Europe ; wherein the conclusion of the commission on 
the best European art is very interesting, Millet being 
the greatest painter to their mind. They think, too, that 
Japan will soon be able to show the world something 
better than anything yet accomplished, which we very 
much doubt. 

We feel, however, that wonderful as Japanese art has 
been, yet there is a great gulf between it and the best 
Greek and modern art. To us Japanese art is the pro- 
duct of a semi civilized race, a race in which there is 
strong sympathy with nature, but a very superficial 
acquaintance with her marvellous workings. In short, 
we feel the Japanese need a deeper and more scientific 
knowledge of nature, and that their work falls far short 
of the best European work. At the present day there is 
a craze for anything Japanese, but like all crazes it will 

Naturalism in Pictorial and Glyptic Art. 59 

end in bringing ridicule upon Japanese work ; for their 
work, though fine for an uncivilized nation, is absurd in 
many points, and this stupid craze by indiscriminate 
praise will only kill the qualities to be really admired. 

The earliest authentic records of Chinese painting date Chinese 
about A.D. 251. The earliest painters were painters of arti 
Buddhist pictures. Mr. Anderson mentions as one of the 
best known of the early masters, one Wu-Tao-Tsz', whose Wu-Tao- 
animals were remarkable. He thinks that the art of sz ' 
China of to-day is feeble compared with that which 
tiourished 1100 years ago. We are informed too that 
the " artistic appreciation of natural scenery existed in 
China many centuries before landscapes played a higher 
part in the European picture than that of an accessory," 
and judging from the specimens he gives in his book of the 
work of the Sung Dynasty (960 1279 A.D.), the Chinese 
artists had a great feeling for landscape. We are told that 
the painters of the thirteenth century " studied nature from 
the aspect of the impressionist," and their subjects were all 
taken from nature, landscape especially delighting them. 
In the fifteenth century we read " decadence began by 
their neglect of nature and their cultivation of decorative 
colouring, calligraphic dexterity, and a compensating dis- 
regard for naturalistic canons/' We are told, and can 
readily believe it, that in painting of bird life they were 
unequalled save by the Japanese, and that down to 1279 
the Chinese were at the head of the world in painting, 
and their only rivals were their pupils, the Japanese. 
Korean art seems also to have degenerated since the 
sixteenth century. 

Thus we ever find the same old story. China, when she 
painted from nature, was unequalled by any nation in the 
world ; when she neglected nature, as she does now, she 
fell to the lowest rank. 


This is a period of a return to the study of nature, of a Renas- 
carrying out of the feelings which seemed to be develop- cence - 
ing even in Giotto's time. No longer now was the artist 

60 Naturalistic Photography. 

to be separated from nature by the intervention of the 
Church, and though natural science was not advancing as 
fast as art was, still a growing regard for nature was the 
order of the day. This feeling first showed itself strongly 
The Van in the Netherlands, with the brothers Van Eyck. We 
Eycks. are told that the Van Eycks " mixed the colours with the 
medium on the palette and worked them together on 
the picture itself, thus obtaining more brilliant effects 
of light as well as more delicate gradations of tone, 
with an infinitely nearer approach to the truth of 

The Van Eycks regarded nature lovingly, and tried 
truthfully to represent her, and though many of their 
works were of sacred subjects, yet they were evidently 
studied from nature with loving conscientiousness ; and 
so successful were they that to this day the picture by 
Portrait of one f the brothers (a portrait of a merchant and 
his wife), in the National Gallery, remains almost unsur- 
passed. It is well worth a journey to the National 
Gallery on purpose to see it, and we trust all those who do 
not already know the picture will take the trouble to go 
and study it well. It is wonderful in technical perfec- 
tion, in sentiment, in truthfulness of impression. Note the 
reflection of the orange in the mirror, with what skill it 
is painted. In fact the whole is full of life and beauty, 
the beauty of naturalism. It is a master-piece good for 
all time, and yet it is but the portrait of a merchant and 
his wife. No religious subject here inspired John Van 
Eyck, but a mere merchant family, yet in many ways the 
picture remains, and will remain, unsurpassed. Such 
powerful minds as the brothers Van Eyck of course 
influenced all art, and they had many followers ; but it 
does not seem that these followers had the insight into 
nature that characterized the Van Eycks, and the work 
falls off after the death of the brothers, whose names 
represent, and ably represent, all that was best of the 
fifteenth century. 

Quinten In the sixteenth century Quinten Massys was the 

Massys. greatest and most naturalistic painter. He was said to 

be the " originator of a peculiar class of genre pictures, 

Naturalism in Pictorial and Glyptic Art. 6r 

being in fact life-like studies from the citizen life of 
Antwerp." Here was an honourable departure from 
conventionality. His followers, however, having no mind 
to see how he was so great, were led away from the study 
of nature, and where are they now ? Their names we all 
know, but who cares to see their works ? Massys, the 
greatest painter of this period in the Netherlands, was 
content to take his subjects from the life of his own times, 
as all great men have been, from the Egyptians down- 

Turning now to Germany, we shall see what the best men Germany, 
there thought of naturalism. The movement towards the 
study of nature seems to have begun in the methods of 
engraving as practised by the goldsmiths, who were 
trained artists. The earliest plates we find are of subjects 
illustrating the life of the times, a hopeful augury for 
Germany, which was fulfilled by the work of the master, 
Albert Durer. We are told he had " unlimited reverence Albert 
for nature, which made him one of the most realistic 
painters that have ever existed." What strikes us most 
after an examination of his plates at the British Museum, 
is the wonderful strength and direction with which the 
man tells his tale. His engravings are, of course, without 
tone, and when he does natural landscapes, as was often, 
the case, this lack of tone is a serious fault; but for 
draughtsmanship he is marvellous, and it is with joy we 
learn that such a master said, ' ' Art is hidden in nature, 
those who care have only to tear it forth." Every one 
interested in art, and who is not already well acquainted 
with Durer' s work, should make a point of going to the 
Print Room in the British Museum, and studying care- 
fully all examples of his work. They will, perhaps, at the 
same time, notice what struck us, namely, that one of the 
best draughtsmen on Punch's staff has evidently been a 
great admirer of Durer. 

Woltmann and Woermann, speaking of Durer's land- 
scapes illustrative of his travels south of the Alps, say 
that " he reveals himself as one of the founders of the 
modern school of landscape painting." 

His " Mill " is remarkable. His etchings are mostly 

62 Naturalistic Photography. 

of familiar subjects of every-day life. The great danger 
of a man like Durer is the bad effect of his influence in 
later times, for inferior men imitate his faults and not 
his merit, as is always the case with imitators, and they 
forget that though Durer was a genius, yet did he live to- 
day he would probably work very differently and interpret 
different subjects. An artist's time and environment 
must always be reckoned with. 

Evolution There are so many people who cannot understand the 
principle of development in art,andcannot distinguish, and 
appreciate, and value artists according to their periods, and 
as steps in development, but are now-a-days led by them, 
holding them up as models for modern painters, whereas 
they are but the undeveloped efforts of earlier times. 
There are numbers of young men who paint better than 
Durer ever did, but who lack Durer' s genius ; just as au 
undergraduate may know more science than Galileo, or 
more mathematics than Newton, but yet be incomparably 
less great than either Galileo or Newton. A work of art, 
however, is only valuable for its intrinsic merits, and 
much as we feel the value of Durer, Michael Angelo, 
Raphael, and others in their own time, for many of 
their works as works of art, qua art, we care but little 
now, but as historical documents they are priceless. 

It may be asked how Durer, the Van Eycks, and 
others can be called <f naturalists," when they painted so 
many religious pictures. Of course the one explana- 
tion of this is that they painted conscientiously from 
living models and natural landscapes, and not from 
what is called their " imagination/ 7 The influence 
of the times on these painters could not but be 
tremendous, but if a man must perforce paint an 
" imaginative" picture, its artistic value must always be 
in proportion to the truth of the picture ; and, therefore, 
what is good in the picture is the naturalism of it. All 
the rest seems to our mind for how could Durer or any 
one else paint the Virgin Mary ? uninteresting. For 
Durer and the men of his day there was, of course, every 
excuse, but to-day there is none ; and if painters will 
persist in painting from their imagination woolly land- 

Naturalism in Pictorial and Glyptic Art. 63 

scapes, peopled by impossible men, women, and animals, 
they will pay the penalty of such vivid imagination by 
quick and well-merited consignment to oblivion. The 
public call such men learned. Learned, forsooth ! 
when Lempriere or the poets have supplied the idea. 
" There is something great behind a picture," is another 
favourite expression ; well, so there is behind many an 
impostor's work, but that greatness belongs to another 

An artist looks at the art of the picture, a sentimen- 
talist at the subject alone ; to him a badly-painted subject 
may bring tears to the eyes, to an artist the same subject 
will probably bring a laugh. What is the sense of copy- 
ing our predecessors ? And even as copyists, these 
painters of u imaginative " works fall immeasurably 
below their models. Botticelli towers yet like a giant over 
Blake and Rossetti, yet we know he was very far from 

The next great German was Hans Holbein the younger. Hans 
He had advantages over Durer, for he was born when the Holbein, 
feeling for nature was strong, and thus started with a 
clear mind, and arrived at achievements never yet sur- 
passed. Hans Holbein stands out as a master for all 
time. His portraits are wonderful. He, again, threw all 
his energy into the study of nature, and his works are 
chiefly representative of the life of his own times, portraits 
of merchants and fellow-citizens. There is the full- 
length portrait of a gentleman in the National Gallery, 
whose name has not come down to us ; yet is the interest 
less great for that ? The dead Christ at Basle too is 
wonderful, as every one (with good observation, be it 
always said) who has seen a naked dead body, will 
affirm, but the anatomy of the skeleton in Holbein's 
"Dance of Death" would make a first year's medical 
student laugh. It must have been drawn from the 

Much of Holbein's best work was done in London, and 
is at present in England, and we cannot leave this part of 
the subject without begging our readers to take every 
opportunity of seeing the work of this wonderful 

64 Naturalistic Photography. 

master, opportunities which, alas ! will be rare enough, 
who was a naturalistic painter of the first quality. 
Turning to Switzerland, we find no name worth men- 
tioning ; and here we would ask those who trace the 
effects of sublime mountain scenery on the character 

Swiss art. of men, why there has been no Swiss art worth mention- 
ing ? Of course the explanation is simple because 
art has nothing whatever to do with sublime scenery. 
The best art has always been done with the simplest 

In Spain and Portugal at this time was being felt 
the influence of the naturalism of the Van Eycks. In 
France the Fontainebleau School was struggling towards 
nature, but no genius arose. But in Italy there arose a 

Da Vinci, giant, Leonardo Da Vinci. Never has there been such 
an instance of the combination of scientific knowledge 
and artistic capacity in one man. In the Louvre is his 
best work, the portrait of Monna Lisa, a master-piece, 
but in our opinion a master-piece eclipsed by other 
master-pieces. Of this great man we are told that " he 
constantly had recourse to the direct lessons of nature, say- 
ing that such teaching at second hand made the artist, 
not the child, but the grandchild of nature ! " Again we 
read that " Leonardo was wholly in love with nature, 
and to know her through science and to mirror her by 

M. Angelo. ar * were ^ ne a i ms an( ^ en< ^ f n ^ s lif 6 -" Michael Angelo 
is the next great name we come to. Woltmann and 
Woerman say that te the mightiest artist soul that has 
lived and worked throughout Christian ages is Michael 
Angelo Buonarroti." Now this is a literary dogma to which 
we are totally opposed, and so we are to all the pedantic 
criticism which follows, about " strong and lofty subjec- 
tivity," " purified ideal/' and what not. It is such writing 
as this that misleads people/ Let Michael Angelo be com- 
pared with the standard nature by any student of 
nature, and Michael Angelo will fall immediately. Wolt- 
mann and Woermann tell us, " he studied man alone, and 
for his own sake/' the structure being to him everything. 
This is what we always felt to be the fault of Michael 
Angelo, i.e. that he was rather an anatomist, and often a 

Naturalism in Pictorial and Glyptic Art. 65 

lover of pathological specimens, than an artist, although 
he was a great sculptor. The action of the muscles in his 
figures may not go beyond the verge of the possible 
when taken separately, and as one would test them with 
an electric current, but we do insist that when taken as 
a harmonious whole, the spasmodic action of some 
muscles as expressed by him would have prevented the 
exaggerated actions of others by antagonizing their effect. 
Michael Angelo's work has always given us the feeling 
that he had a model, on which, with an electric current, 
he tested the action of each muscle separately, and then 
modelled each one separately whilst the circuit was 
joined ; in fact that his works are amateur scientific studies 
and not works of art ; and herein is his weakness, he 
passes the bounds of nature. WoltmaDn and Woermanri 
say first of all he does go beyond the bounds of nature, 
and that therein lies his greatness, and then they flatly 
contradict themselves, and say an anatomist has informed 
them that he does not go beyond the bounds of nature, 
and they quote this as a merit. Our opinion, also that of 
a student of anatomy, is that he goes beyond the bounds 
of nature, and exaggerates nature, and so spoils his work 
completely. He is far below the Greeks. His influence, 
too, has been hurtful, for he has kept all but very inde- 
pendent and powerful intellects within his traditions. 

Eaphael 4 and Correggio we will quickly dismiss, R ap h ae i 
though we are fully aware of the 70,000 reputation of and Cor- 
the one, and the literary reputation of the other. 
Raphael does not appeal to us, with his sickly senti- 
mentality, his puerile composition, his poor technique, 
and his lack of observation of nature. Many of the 
figures in his pictures, standing some feet behind the 
foremost, are taller and larger than those in front. We 
feel sure he had no independence of mind. He was a 
religious youth, with no great power of thought, and time 
will give him his true place. But as a taxpayer we must 
enter a mild protest against the ineptitude of authorities 
who pay such heavy prices for pictures such as the 

4 M. Charcot has recently shown that Raphael's demoniacs are 
all false and untrue. 


66 Naturalistic Photography. 

Raphael referred to. There was a small picture of a 
head the head of a doctor by an unknown hand, 
hanging near the Raphael, which, as a work of art, is 
infinitely its superior, but it was done by an unknown hand. 
(These pictures have since been re-hung.) For that 
70,000 what a splendid collection of good work by men 
of the present day could have been purchased, a collection 
every single picture of which might easily be superior to 
all the Raphaels in the world as works of art ! 
Del Sarto. To the same period belongs Andrea del Sarto, a 
naturalistic painter of great power. He had more 
feeling for nature than most of the men of his time, and 
his breadth of treatment and truthfulness of colouring are 
admirable. Of course he painted religious pictures, but 
from the naturalistic point of view they are wonderful. 
The student must study the portrait in the National 
Gallery painted by him. 

The next and last great master of this period is Titian, 
another of the few entitled to the name of genius. His 
portraits are his best works. Michael Angelo is reputed 
to have said, f ' This mau might have been as eminent in 
design as he is true to nature and masterly in counter- 
feiting the life, and then nothing could be desired better 
or more perfect." Titian's works show that he had much? 
more love for nature than Michael Angelo ever showed, 
and we think it a pity for Michael Angelo's sake that he 
did not take a leaf from Titian's book instead of criticiz- 
ing his power of design. His landscape backgrounds 
show a feeling for nature far above anything painted up' 
to that time. After his day art in Italy fell into evil 
ways, and no Italian name stands out even to this day. 
The study of nature was neglected, illogical traditions 
slipped in, and though some writers on painting talk of 
" Naturalists/' in the period of decadence, citing Cara- 
vaggio and others, we would fain know what they mean 
by the term "Naturalists/' for the painters they cite 
were no students of nature, as is shown by their works, 
which are more realistic than naturalistic, they being as 
much students of nature as are the " professional " photo- 
graphers of to-day, whose ideas of nature are sharpness 

Naturalism in Pictorial and Glyptic Art. 67 

and wealth of detail. Canaletto's pictures look like bad The 
photographs, and that he used a camera obscura is well cam 
known, for Count Algarotti has told us as much. He 
includes Kibera and other Tramontane masters in the 
list of those who used tho camera obscura. Ribera Kibera. 
however, is no small painter, although he is not a 
great master. The passages in some of his works are 
masterful, as in the dead Christ at the National Gallery. 


We shall now glance over the works of the great Preamble, 
artists throughout Europe from the time of the Re- 
nascence period downwards, and see how and what 
influence Naturalism had on them, and we shall inquire 
whether the loving truthfulness to and study of nature 
and adhesion to the subjects of every-day life was not the 
secret of the success of all who stand out as pre-eminent 
during this period. The simplest method will be to take 
separately the countries where art has flourished. 

Beginning with Spain, we find at the outset from Spain, 
history that there was but little hope for art. Religion en- 
chained art, and that terrible stain on ignorant Spain, the 
Inquisition, gave rise to the office of " Inspector of Sacred 
Pictures." This office was no sinecure, for it controlled 
all the artists' movements, even prescribing how much of 
the virgin's naked foot should be shown. Comments are 
needless, for how could art flourish under such circum- 
stances? One name, however, comes at last to break 
"through all rule, and in 1599, at Seville, was born 
Velasquez. Velasquez, though moving from his youth Velasquez, 
up in the most refined society of his native town, had the 
might of genius to see that the falsely sentimental work 
of his predecessors was not the true stuff, and he, like all 
great workers, made Nature his watchword. He is re- 
puted to have said he " would rather be the first of vulgar 
painters than the second of refined ones/' and though he 
began by painting still life straight from nature, he finally 
became in his portraits one of the most refined, truthful, 
and greatest of painters the world has ever seen. 
Though greatly influenced by the religious tendencies of 

i 2 


Naturalistic Photography. 

the time, we find him often painting the life around him, 
and we have from his brush water-carriers, and even 
drunkards ; but he finally reached his greatest heights 
and the exercise of his full powers in portraiture. All 
who have a chance, and all who have not should try and 
create one, should go to the National Gallery and study 
the remarkable portrait of Philip of Spain. Rarely has 
portraiture attained such a level as in this example, and 
what was the oath this painter took ? " Never to do 
anything without nature before him." The next name, 
great in some ways, but not to be compared with 

Murillo. Velasquez, is Murillo ; and when was he great ? Was 
it in his sickly sentimental religious pictures ? No, 
certainly not. It was in such pictures as the Spanish 

Dulwich peasant boys, such as can be seen in the Dulwich 

Gallery. Gallery. This gallery is open to the public, and quite 
easy of access, and should not be neglected. The last 

Fortuny. Spanish name of note is that of Fortuny, a Catalonian, who 
is often mistaken for a Frenchman, since he lived in Paris 
some years ago. Fortuny is deserving of much praise as 
having been the first to shake off the slavery of " geome- 
trical perspective." His best pictures were homely and 
festal scenes, chiefly interiors, which he painted as he 
saw them without any preconceived ideas of perspective. 
For this new departure, and on account of his work, 
Fortuny deserves all praise. Since his death, in 1874, no 
Spanish painter of note has come to the fore, but art in 
that country languishes in prettiness, false sentimentality, 
and works done for popularity ; the epliemeridoe of art. 


Germany seems to have neglected the lessons taught her 
by Durer and Holbein, and the mystics seize her and carry 
her away from nature, and, therefore, from art. Since 
the days of Holbein no really great man has arisen. 
Kambacli. Kaulbach, who has been well described as " all litera- 
ture," is praised by some, but he does not seem to have 
had even poetic ideas. Nature to him was nothing, but 
Makart. the petty doings of erring man were everything. Makart 
Heftner. was meretricious and small, and Heffner's pictures are 

Naturalism in Pictorial and Glyptic Art. 69 

like bad photographs in colour, just the class of photo- 
graphy we are now writing against. Had he been a 
photographer, he would never have risen above the 
topographical,, as he has never risen above the topo- 
graphical in painting. Greater is the Hungarian, Mun- Mun 
kacsy ; but is he an immortal ? We doubt it. 

In Russia, Verestchagin is the only name that has made 
any stir, but he, like Heffner, sees Nature topographi- 
cally, and the only emotion caused by his " show " was 
called up by the oriental rugs. 


Rubens and Van Dyck we mention only to show we have 
not overlooked them. The work of both shows more regard )^ck. a 
for " getting on " and the " ancients " than for nature : it 
is lacking in feeling and in truth. Van Dyck is often wood 
itself. Teniers the younger as an artist is a long way Terriers 
ahead of either of these men, and in some ways he goes J. nd ^ aa 
very far. Van Ostade is often good also. His portrait 
of a man lighting his pipe, a small picture to be seen at 
the Dulwich Gallery, is a masterpiece of painting, and as 
fine as anything of the kind done up to this period. This 
little gem is the work of a lover of nature and an artist. 
It is quite a small canvas, about 10 x 6, with no " sub- 
ject," nothing but a man lighting his pipe ; yet it is 
perfect, and far surpasses all the sentimentalities of 
Raphael, or the tours de force of Rubens. The student 
must see this picture without fail. 


The English painters of note begin with Hogarth, H S artl1 - 
though the bad work of Lely and Kneller is cited as 
English, because executed in England, yet neither of 
these two men was English, and no lover of art would be 
proud of them if they were. Hogarth, then, was the 
father of English painting, and he began on good healthy 
lines, for he was a naturalist to the backbone, choosing 
his subjects from his own time ; and though he affected to 
point a moral in his pictures, still there is the grip of 
reality and insight into essentials in his work which mark 
him as a great painter. The reader will probably have 

70 Naturalistic Photography. 

seen his work at the National Gallery ; if not, he should 

do so at once. 
Wilson. We pass over Wilson, for in his work is not apparent 

any love of nature, but only a feeling for classic- 
Reynolds. j sm> Th e next name i s t h at O f j os hua Reynolds. 

He was a mannerist, and, though successful in his own 
time, is very mortal. Close on his knightly heels came 
Gains- one of the true immortals, Thomas Gainsborough, one of 
borongh. the best portrait-painters the world has ever seen. His 
landscapes, though better than any up to his time, are 
not good, and his reputation rests chiefly on his power 
in portraiture, in which he was certainly a master. 
Naturalism breathes from his canvas ; he has seized 
the very essence of his sitters' being, and portrayed them 
full of life and beauty. See his portrait of Mrs. Tickell 
and Mrs. Sheridan in the Dulwich Gallery; you will never 
forget the charm and the beauty of the ladies, wherever 
you go afterwards. Mrs. Siddons, in the National 
Gallery, too, is wonderful. Study well these two, and 
then go and gaze on a portrait by Reynolds, and we 
doubt not you will have learnt something of the gulf that 
separated the two painters. Gainsborough was, to our 
mind, the first immortal in English art, and fit to rank 
with Van Eyck, Holbein, Da Vinci, Titian, and Ve- 
Kauffman lasquez. Leaving " the Kautfman " and Fuseli to those 
Fuseli W ^ can a d m ire them, we pass 011 to poor George Mor- 
Morland l an( ^ a g er >i us m hi 8 own 'branch of art. This man 
studied and painted from life, and his pictures bear 
testimony that he did so, and notwithstanding the draw- 
backs caused by his unfortunate temperament, his name 
lives and grows more respected every day, for his study 
was nature, and so his work will always be interesting. 

We now come to a great and deservedly well-known name 
Bewick. that of Thomas Bewick, the engraver on wood. Here 
we have a man working in a humble way, humble that is 
as compared with painting or sculpture, yet loving and 
studying nature in every detail, and following her in all 
her mystery and charm, only daring now and then to add 
sc me quiet fancy of his own, and yet he lives and his 
name grows greater every day. A true naturalist and a 

Naturalism in Pictorial and Glyptic Art, 7 1 

real artist was he, and his fame will be lasting. "When 
Wilson is archaic, Bewick will be held up for admiration, 
so powerful is the effect of the honest study of nature in 
his work. His birds and quadrupeds we all know ; but 
if any reader should not know them, he should at once 
get a copy and study the cuts in it. Mr. Quaritch has, 
we believe, recently issued a reprint of the book. 

Wood-cutting has degenerated. Men of little training 
and no artistic feeling took it up, and slowly but surely engraving. 
the art decayed until it became purely mechanical, and 
so it has remained in England. Now it bids fair to be 
superseded by photo-mechanical processes, as it will un- 
doubtedly be entirely superseded directly a really artistic 
process of reproduction is discovered for printing with the 
type. In the United States, however, wood-engraving 
took a fresh start, and brought photography to its aid, 
and our opinion is that the effect obtained in photographs 
printed on albumenized paper became the effect which 
the wood-cutters aimed for, and the result is a print of 
wonderful detail and beauty, but for our taste it is too 
polished and neat, the effect of overlaying is far too 
visible, and, in short, it does not render nature truly, 
and though far surpassing anything of the kind done in 
England, it is, as a work of art, altogether eclipsed by 
Bewick's work, the reason being that Bewick only took 
wood-engraving as a medium for the expression of the 
beauties of nature, every line in his blocks being full 
of meaning. But the hydra head of commercialism showed 
itself, and wood-engravers with little or no feeling for or 
knowledge of nature set to work turning out blocks like 
machines. Photography will keep these artisans from 
falling utterly away from nature, yet such work is harm- 
ful and of no artistic good to us, though it may please 
the public. Had there been no constant returns to nature 
(as there must always be in some measure when a photo- 
graph is used) decay would be sharp and speedy, but photo- 
graphy bolsters up the dying art. Lately several wood- 
blocks have been produced cut from photographs, wherein 
all the beauty of the photographs has been utterly lost by 
the engraver, and the results are bastard slips of trade ; 

72 Naturalistic Photography. 

but we shall have more to say on this point later on. 
One thing at any rate photography can claim : that is so 
long as it can be practised, art can never slip back to 
the crude work done in some eras of its decadence. 
Photography has helped many of these feeble wood-cutters 
immensely, and the epicier-critic calls these works 
" precious." It is extraordinary how men will deceive 

Now we come to a branch of art which is essentially 
English, namely, painting in water-colours. It is not 
meant by this that water-colour is a new medium, or that 
the English water-colourists were the first to use the 
medium, for the tempera paintings were but water- 
colours, and Albert Durer and others used it consider- 
ably ; but what is implied is that the English were the 
first to adopt it largely and develop it, though it was 
reserved for the modern Dutchmen and Frenchmen to 
show its full capabilities. The painter in water-colour 
has not, of coarse, the same control over his medium as he 
has in using oils, and the work when finished even by 
the best artists, has an artificial look that belies nature. But 
to see really true water-colours the reader must not look 
for them in English galleries. No Englishman ever 
came so near to nature to the subtleties of nature in 
water-colour as do the modern Dutch and French painters. 
The reader would do well to go to Goupil's exhibitions 
of modern Dutch and French painters, which are held 
from time to time, and keep a look-out for water-colours, 
and he should carefully study them at the Paris Salon. 
Prophecy is always risky and of little count, but we 
would like to venture a prophecy that water-colours will 
never take a very prominent place in art, because no 
great genius will ever be content with the medium. 
Of the bulk of English water-colours of to-day there is 
not one word of praise to be said, and the student in art 
matters will do well to avoid all exhibitions of this work 
until he has carefully studied the best work in art, and 
until he has a greater insight into nature ; and then let 
him go to the various water-colour exhibitions, and if 
he does not receive a mental shock, we shall be greatly 
surprised. There is but little nature in them, indeed but 

Naturalism in Pictorial and Glyptic Art. 73 

little anything except pounds, shillings, and pence. The 
best of them are nauseous imitations of Turner, and the 
whole of them show an entire ignorance of the simplest 
phenomena of nature, which would be startling did we 
not remember that most of them are painted from " notes " 
and ** memory." These remarks do not of course apply 
to such work as is done by a few modern painters, such 
as Mr. Whistler, but these paint in oils first and water- 
colour afterwards. The first man worth considering in 
this branch of art is Girtin, who was naturalistic as far Girtin. 
as he could be, and had he not died at such an early 
age (under thirty) the probability is that Turner would 
have been eclipsed by him. Of Turner we shall speak 
later on. The name of David Cox rises above the D. Cox. 
men of bis time; but, after all, his is not the name of an 
immortal. He aimed well, however, for he tried to 
paint the life and landscape of his time. Much has been 
written about De Wint; but if we go to the basement of De Wint. 
the National Gallery and study De Wint, and then go to 
Norfolk and study the landscape there, we shall find 
Mr. De Wict is but a sorry painter. One thing, how- 
ever, may be said in his praise. He painted out of doors 
not in his studio and was no doubt a lover of nature. 
His peasants are not the fearful travesties of Hill, 
Barret, and Collins. Lewis and Cotman and Vinceiio 
have, however, done some better things than De Wint. 

Returning to oil painting, we must pass over the long 
list of names, including Presidents of the Koyal Academy, 
whose names are now all but if not quite forgotten, for 
their peasantry of the Opera Bouffe, their landscapes 
after Claude, their works of the imagination can now in- 
terest no one, and never did interest any but the painters 
themselves and an uneducated public. 

Then we come to Turner, that competitor in painting. Tamer. 
To use a colloquialism " There is a great man gone 
wrong." Had he but lived to-day, he might have been 
an immortal; but he does not live, and his lease of fame 
is not for so long a time as is generally imagined. It 
has had an artificial afflatus through the writings of a 
" splendidly false" critic, and, curiously enough, the 
critic, like the artist, has had insight enough to see the 

74 Naturalistic Photography. 

true purpose of art, namely, that the artist should be true 
to nature, and should be an interpreter of the life and 
landscape of his own time ; and, curiously enough, the 
critic, like the artist, does not know what nature is. 
The critic has taken Turner as nature unalloyed, and 
hence the whole of that gigantic work of his is built on 
sand. The critic never had much, if any, weight with 
the best artists. Even Turner himself was amused with 
the reasonings of his eulogistic logic ! and gave it out 
as much as a man can give out about his eulogist, that 
all the tall talk about his pictures was rubbish. But 
Turner was sincere according to his lights. To say of his 
earlier pictures that he painted in rivalry or imitation, if 
you like, of Wilson, Poussin, and Claude, is to say they 
are bad, as they undoubtedly are. This spirit of rivalry 
never seems to have deserted Turner, for in his will he 
left directions bequeathing one of his pictures to the 
Academy, on condition it should be hung side by side 
with a Claude. The spirit of this is, of course, patent. 
He thinks he has beaten Claude, and that is enough. 
No great genius would have descended to that. Art 
was to him an unending competition, and the result was 
that nature was neglected ; and though he revelled in 
the life and landscape of his own times, yet the small 
spirit of competition was his ruin. Had he humbly, like 
Constable, had faith in his tenets, and lovingly and 
modestly clung to nature, his fame might have been im- 
mense and everlasting. His later pictures are, of course, 
the eccentricities of senility, and the false colourings seen 
by a diseased eye, as has been lately shown, and are as 
unlike nature as one could expect such work to be. But 
let us take his " Frosty Morning " at the National 
Gallery. Look well at it, aud what do you find ? 
Falsity everywhere, and most of the essence and poetry 
of a frosty morning completely missed. The truest 
picture by Turner that we know is a little aquarelle at 
South Kensington " A View on the Thames/' Here, 
then, when we get Turner true to the truth which he felt 
in himself, and not competing (that we know of), what 
do we find ? We find him immensely behind De Hooghe 
in a truthful and poetic expression of nature, as is well 

Naturalism in Pictorial and Glyptic Art. 75 

possible for so great a man. The Liber Studiorum 
should also be carefully studied, noting the falsities ; trees 
drawn by rule, figures not drawn at all, the total disregard 
of the phenomena of nature, sometimes even the evidence 
of several suns in one picture. There is no truth of tone; no 
atmosphere ; the values are all wrong ; all the charm and 
subtlety of nature completely missed. Go to De Hooghe or De 
Clays after this, and what a difference ! Here are no mere- 
tricious adornments, but more nature and less of erring, 
feeble man and his mannerisms. Turner is not the man 
to study, and if you cannot f ' understand him " well and 
good. Many artists cannot and do not wish to, for there 
is nothing to understand, and many French painters of 
great ability jeer at his very name. With what relief 
we turn from Turner to Constable and Crome. These 
two East Anglians are giants in the history of English Crome 
painting. All should study Constable's works at the 
National Gallery and South Kensington ; and his life by 
Leslie is well worth reading, as showing how much of a 
naturalist in theory he was. The best example of his 
work that we know is a little river scene, with some 
willows, which we saw at South Kensington Museum. 
His work is not, however, perfect. You feel that there 
is no atmosphere in his pictures. This is due to their being 
out of tone. He had not the knowledge of nature that 
characterized De Hooghe, and was not always faithful to 
his creed : hence his failings. For though we read in 
his life such passages as these : " In such an age as this, 
painting should be understood, not looked on with blind 
wonder, nor considered only as poetic inspiration, but a3 
a pursuit legitimate, scientific, and mechanical." . . . 
" The old rubbish of art, the musty, commonplace, 
wretched pictures which gentlemen collect, hang up, 
and display to their friends, may be compared to Shak- 
speare's ' Beggarly Account of Empty Boxes/ Nature 
is anything but this, either in poetry, painting, or 
in the fields." ..." Observe that thy best director, 
thy perfect guide is nature. Copy from her. In 
her paths is thy triumphal arch. She is above all 
other teachers." ... a Is it not folly, said Mr. North- 
cote to me in the Exhibition, as we were standing before 

76 Naturalistic Photography. 

's picture, for a mau to paint wliat lie can never 

see ? Is it not sufficiently difficult to paint what he 
does see ? This delightful lesson leads me to ask, what 
is painting but an imitative art an art that is to realize, 
not to feign. Then some dream that every man who 
will not submit to long toil in the imitation of nature, 
flies up, becomes a phantom, and produces dreams of 
nonsense and abortions. He thinks to save himself under 
a fine imagination, which is generally, and almost always 
in young men, the scapegoat of folly and idleness." . . . 
" There has never been a lay painter, nor can there be. 
The art requires a long apprenticeship, being mechanical, 
as well as intellectual." . . . " My pictures will never be 
popular," he said, "for they have no handling. But I 
see no handling in nature." . . . Blake once, on looking 
through Constable's sketch-books, said of a drawing of fir- 
trees, " Why, this is not drawing, but inspiration ! " and 
Constable replied, ff I never knew it before ; I meant it for 
drawing." ..." If the mannerists had never existed, 
painting would have been easily understood." ..." I 
hope to show that ours is a regularly taught profession ; 
that it is scientific, as well as poetic; that imagination 
alone never did, and never can, produce works that are 
to stand a comparison with realities." ..." The dete- 
rioration of art has everywhere proceeded from similar 
causes, the imitation of preceding styles, with little 
reference to nature." ..." It appears to me that pic- 
tures have been overvalued, held up by a blind admiration 
as ideal things, and almost as standards by which nature 
is to be judged, rather than the reverse." ..." The 
young painter, who, regardless of present popularity, 
would leave a name behind him, must become the patient 
pupil of Nature " yet Constable was not always true 
to himself. 

Crome, who was, in our opinion, a better painter than 
Constable, was like him a naturalist, and true to his faith. 
There is an amusing scene in his life, which we will quote. 
" A brother of the art met Crome in a remote spot of 
healthy verdure, with a troop of young persons. Not 
knowing the particular object of the assembly, he ven- 
tured to address the Norwich painter thus : ' Why, I 

Naturalism in Pictorial and Glyptic Art. 77 

thought I had left you in the city engaged in your school/ 
1 1 am in my school/ replied Crome, ' and teaching my 
scholars from the only true examples. Do you think/ 
pointing to a lovely distance, ' either you or I can do 
better than that ? ' " 

Crorne has expressed his view of art in the follow- 
ing remarks, which we read in his life : " The man 
who would place an animal where the animal would not 
place itself, would do the same with a tree, a bank, a 
human figure with any object, in fact, that might occur 
in Nature ; and therefore such a man may be a good 
colourist or a good draughtsman, but he is no artist. " 
At the National Gallery is to be seen a very good 
specimen of his work, and one well worth studying. 
Vincent, another East Anglian, did some wonderful work, 
quite equal to Van der Veldes'. 

We now pass over the names of Callcott, Nasmyth, Calloott, 
Miiller, and Maclise, none masters, though they have S^f :iytl1 ' 
been called " great colourists," whatever that may mean, and 
A great colourist should be a true colourist, and Maclise. 
Miiller is almost chromographic in originality in this 

Creswell, Linn ell, and Cooke, are names that stand Creswell, 
out at this period, and the greatest of them is Cooke; 
his painting of " Lobster Pots/' at South Kensington, 
being wonderfully fresh and true ; but none are poets ; 
they have but little insight into nature, though 
Linnell at times shows the true feeling. A long 
list of well-known names follows, such as Hilton, Hay- 
don, Etty, and Eastlake, but none are masters, and we only 
mention them to caution against them. Of considerable 
power were Wilkie, Stansfield, Mulready, Leslie, Land- stansn'eld, 
seer, and Mason, but none of them was really good, Mulready, 
although much has been written and said in praise of Leslie > 
their works. They are all false in sentiment, and all a ^ 
lack insight into the poetry of nature. In technique Mason. 
Wilkie and Landseer are often strong, and they will Wilkie and 
always appeal to a certain class of people. Mason's Landseer - 
work is a fine example of the folly of introducing the asou - 
so-called " imaginative " into landscape. Take his 
" Harvest Moon/' when and where did ever men exist 

78 Naturalistic Photography. 

with such limbs ? the whole picture smacks of the model 
and of the " stage idealism ;" there is no nature there, 
but a laughable parody of it. The next really great 
F. Walker, name in English art is that of Frederick Walker, a 
naturalist, and above all an artist who had a great grip 
of and insight into nature. But in his work the tradi- 
tions of the idyllic peasants of the golden age lingers, 
and we find his ploughman merrily running along with 
a plough as though it were a toy cart ; and what a 
ploughman ! he never saw a field in his life. This is a 
grave fault, and takes away from the greatness of 
Walker, yet notwithstanding this his name will always be 
a landmark in English art. The reader will be able to 
study one of his works in the National Gallery. The date 
of Walker's death brings us down to the actual present. 
Regarding living English painters we will remain dis- 
creetly silent. It must be remembered that English art is 
young, beginning- as it practically does in the eighteenth 
century, for the miniature-painters cannot count for 
much, and we must therefore not expect too much. Great 
men, especially great artists, are rare as Koh-i-noors. 
England can boast of a few, such as Gainsborough, 
American and Constable and Cn me. Of American art there is but 
Art - little to say. No name stands out worthy of record till 

Whistler. J. M. Whistler appears, and he, though an American by 
birth, can hardly be called an American painter, for the 
life and landscape of his own country he neglects, as 
also do Sargent and Harrison, two strong painters, both 
French by education. Whistler's name rises far above any 
artist living in England, his portrait of his mother and 
those of Carlyle and Sarasate are works good for all time 
and worthy to be ranked with the best. Mr. Whistler's 
influence, too, has been great and good. As a pioneer 
he led the revolt against ignorant criticism by his attack 
on Ruskin. Vide "Art and Art Criticism, Whistler 
v. Ruskiu." His life in England has been a long battle 
for art, and though many do not approve of all his 
methods, and still less of his brilliant but illogical " Ten 
o'Clock," his work and influence have been for good. 
Another great step in advance, introduced by Mr. 

Naturalism in Pictorial and Glyptic Art. 79 

Whistler, has been the reform in hanging- pictures ; 
though he has not been allowed tt> carry out his plans 
thoroughly, yet he has managed his exhibitions much 
more artistically than any others in the country. In 
landscape his night-scene at Valparaiso is marvellous, and 
we doubt whether paint ever more successfully expressed 
so difficult a subject. But even as Homer nods, so 
does at times Mr. Whistler, and sometimes "impress- 
sions " in oil, water-colour, and etching appear with his 
name, an honour of which they are unworthy. Yet 
so long as art lives will Mr. Whistler live in his 
Carlyle, his portrait of his mother, Lady Campbell, 
and some smaller works. Mr. Sargent's Carnations gargent. 
and Lilies must be fresh in our readers' minds. We 
will only say of it that we never saw the actual physical 
facts of nature so truthfully and subtly rendered. 
It is indeed a picture whose title to admiration will be 
lasting, and if the reader has not already seen it or, 
having seen it, has listened to ignorant critics, and 
passed it over as being " ugly," let him go to South 
Kensington and view it again, for the nation is its for- 
tunate possessor. Let him look well at it, and consider 
what it is. It represents a garden at the time of day 
when the sunlight is fading but has not quite gone 
crepuscule in fact, and with the dying light of day is re- 
presented the artificial light of Chinese lanterns. This 
is indeed a masterpiece. Mr. Harrison's "In Arcady " Harrison, 
is wonderful in its effect of sunshine through trees, though 
the picture is marred by the low type of the models in- 
troduced and by the painting of the figures. Had it but 
been pure landscape it would have been a wonderful 
piece of work. Never have we seen the effect of 
noontide heat so well rendered. This, then, brings us to 
the end of American art, and it is to be hoped that men 
strong as these will go back to their own country 
and paint the life of their own land and time. William 
Hunt is a man much thought of in America, but we Hunt, 
have never seen any of his paintings, though his book 
shows him to be a naturalist to the heart, and the 
reader will do well to read it. 

So Naturalistic Photography. 

Here, then, we must leave England and America, only 
remarking that things look bad for the education of the 
American public when the best Americans stay away, 
and when rich sausage-makers buy Herbert's works 
with which to educate themselves, and when catalogue 
compilers take over boat-loads of Eaglish water-colours 
with which still further to lead them wrong. America 
wants no such education as can be given by Herbert's 
senilities or English water-colours. She wants a band of 
earnest young men, who, having learned their technique 
in the besfc schools in the world, namely those of Paris, 
shall return to America and paint the scenes of their 
own country, and therein only lies the hope for American 


The first mighty name of the modern period is that of 
Rembrandt Van Ryn. Holland, by her bravery, had 
thrown off the Spanish yoke, and with it the crushing yoke 
of Catholicism, and stood free to follow her own bent. 
As a result of this freedom a body of Naturalists arose 
who did more for modern art than any body of painters 
in the world. Rembrandt, though a giant and fit for the 
company of the immortals, Van Eyck, Velasquez, &c., 
was not perfect, for sometimes the power of tradition 
lurks in his work, and he forces his portraits by warm 
colours in the background, an artifice which was not at 
all necessary, and which Mr. Whistler has done without. 
There are a number of his works in the National Gallery, 
and a good one in the Dulwich Gallery, where is also a 
great Velasquez, so that the reader should not fail to 
go there. Rembrandt was inspired by the simple life 
around him, portraits and interiors satisfied him. It is 
a significant fact that the greatest painters, Durer, Da, 
Vinci, Velasquez, and Rembrandt have been content to 
paint the life of their own times and not to draw upon 
their imagination. The learned painter, it cannot be too 
often repeated, is he who is learned in all the resources 
of his art, and we question very much whether one great 
reason why so few great painters have arisen is not that 
artists as a rule are so poorly and narrowly educated. 

Naturalism in Pictorial and Glyptic Art. 81 

At any rate, the opposite holds good, that the most 
highly and soundly educated artists, men who moved and 
held their own in the best intellectual societies of their 
time, were naturalists. But to return to Rembrandt. 
Perhaps his mastery, his grip of nature, show forth as 
much in his etchings as in his paintings. He, like all 
great etchers, and there are few enough, used etching Etchings, 
only within its legitimate limits, that is, as a method of 
expression by line, in a simple, direct and brief manner. 
AJI etching by a master may be looked upon in the same 
light as an epigram, 1 sonnet or ode by a poet. Many of 
Rembrandt's etchings can be seen in the British Museum, 
and should be thoroughly well studied ; after which study, 
pick up some of the unmeaning work of Seymour Hadeii 
or any other modern etcher, except Mr. Whistler and 
Rajon, 2 and you will, without doubt, distinguish the differ- 
ence. Most modern works are good examples of how not 
to etch. Line after line is put in without any meaning at 
all; there is no evidence of the study of nature in the 
work and the subjects are trivial and commonplace. One 
of the greatest evils commercialism has done to art is to 
ruin modern etching, by having pictures of the old 
masters copied slavishly by the etcher, and elaborated and 
worked up, so that one wearies of them. Such work can 
scarcely be said to rise to the dignity of fine art at all, 
and Rembrandt, we think, would rise in horror from his 
grave, if he could see his paintings reproduced by etchers. 
Any reproduction of a picture is unsatisfactory and does 
not become fine art at all, but is only useful to publish 
reflections of the mind whose work it is intended to repre- 
sent, and for our part we think a good photo-etching does 
this better, because more faithfully, than any other pro- 
cess. It is difficult to imagine the mind that can set 
itself to work for months, even years, at an engraving or 
etching from another man's work when the world is so 
full of pathos and poetry, and subjects abound on all 
sides. No great man was ever found in this category. 

1 Epigram here being used in the old Greek sense. 

2 Now dead. 


82 Naturalistic Photography. 

Durer and Rembrandt etched, and Mr. Whistler etches 
from Nature direct, not impertinently there is no other 
word for it tampering with other men's work. But 
the public will buy these reproductions, and an artificial 
value is thus given to them, and the dealers will of 
Print- course encourage whatever pays. One etching by 
sellers. Rembrandt himself is worth all these reproductions of 
pictures by engraving, etching, mezzo-tint, or photo- 
etching, because it is an original work of art, the out- 
come of the loving study of nature. Not long ago a 
letter appeared in one of the literary tc weeklies," com- 
plaining of the stamping of photogravures by the 
Print-sellers' Association. The obvious answer to this 
print-seller's letter is, of course, that with the works of 
living painters, the style of reproduction rests with the 
painter, and if the artist is satisfied with photo-etching, 
what has any one else to say painters are the best judges 
of these things. Very few painters we know would 
entrust the reproduction of their pictures to etchers or en-' 
gravers, or would countenance the publication of another 
man's view of their work. We have seen photographs of 
"Whistler's Sarasate, but never engravings of it. With bad 
paintings on the other hand, the engraving of them has 
often made the painter's name as well as the engraver's. 
We could cite an example of a living painter who owes his 
reputation chiefly to the engravings of his works, and 
poor things they are even when embellished by the pro- 
cess. At the time this discussion was raging amongst 
the philistines, it was gravely asserted that " engravings 
always rose in price/' and this was given as a reason for 
buying them. Have the engravings of Mr. Landseer's 
pictures risen in price ! Ask the poor subscribers to the 
first copies. Will the engravings of Dore's works rise in 
price ? Quien sabe ? If the reader is under any such 
erroneous idea, let him attend a few sales of engravings 
in London, and he will see proofs of etchings and en- 
gravings knocked down for a few shillings. 

Leaving with regret the great Rembrandt, we pass over 
several smaller but often-quoted names, the most influential 

Naturalism in Pictorial and Glyptic Art. 83 

name we come to is Van Ostade, another naturalist of great Van 
power, of whom we have already spoken. Next we come Ostade - 
to De Hooghe. This is the man who first really gripped De 
thoroughly and expressed truly on canvas the mystery and Hooghe. 
poetry of the open air. There are two specimens (court- 
yards) of this wonderful painter's work at the National 
Gallery. They are an education in themselves, and are 
well worth long and careful study for hours, indeed there 
are few pictures more worthy of study. There they hang, 
fresh as nature and beautiful as paint can express, good, 
valuable for all time why ? Because tbe painter has 
known how to give the sentiment of plein air. There 
they hang true and lovely, pictures of Dutch life in the 
seventeenth century. No history can come up to them 
in historic value, none can be so true. 

Cuyp we will pass over with few words. A great Cuyp. 
second-rate man he undoubtedly was, but his hot colour- 
ing smacks of the imagination rather than of nature. 
Paul Potter and Ruysdael also are men with undulv 
great reputations ; they are both false in sentiment, and 
they handled nature with impertinence. Any careful 
observer can see that Ruysdael played with the lighting 
of landscapes as did Turner, and of course it is well 
known that he was not particular as to painting his 
landscapes on the spot. There is no nature in him, 
it is all Ruysdael, Ruysdael, Ruysdael, eternally Ruys- 

Hobbema at times verged near the truth and greatness, Hobbem 
as for instance in the painting of a road with trees, in 
the National Gallery, which our readers will do well to 
study; but he is insincere and untrue all through and 
was not a naturalist. In sea painting, Yan der Velde y an d er 
the younger is wonderful in his truth and love of nature. Telde. 
Good specimens of his work can be seen in the National 

Coming down to our own times, the elder Israels etands Israels. 
out as a giant, a distinguished master. We have only 
been able to see a few of his pictures, but those show 
us the master. Hopeful, indeed, is the art of Holland 

G 2 

8 4 

Naturalistic Photography. 

and Belgium with such men as Artz, Mauve, 3 Maas 
M. Maris, Mesdag, Boosboom, and others. The reader 
will often have opportunities of seeing works by these 
men at the French Gallery, the Hanover Gallery, and 
Goupil's, and he should take every opportunity of study- 
ing their works most carefully. 


And now, lastly, we come to France France where 
art has in modern times reached its highest level. France 
has in modern times always been the leader of civilization 
in Europe, and even now she is in the van of modern 
progress, our intellectual mother. We may have a finer 
literature to show, in Germany science may be more pro- 
found, but in all that is greater than literature or science, 
that is in solving the problem of being and throwing off 
the yoke of religious and political despotism, France has 
become the leader. Practical, energetic, and thrifty, the 
French with all their faults, still remain in many ways 
the first nation of the world. France and the French 
have more of the Ancient Greek's esprit than any other 
nation has or ever has had. In all the humanizing 
influences that distinguish brute man from civilized 
man, the French are to the fore, but in histrionic, glyptic 
and pictorial art, she is unapproachable, and still reigns 
Queen of the Arts, in these branches. 

Passing over Nicolas Poussin, Le Brun and other 
lesser names, whose works are not those of masters, we 
arrive at Claude Lorraine, who may claim to have an 
inkling of the truth and whose work shows a distinct 
advance on Poussin, but who after all is no master because 
not loyal to nature, and therefore his already doubtful 
reputation will go on diminishing. The first name 
that really stands forth as great in French art is that of 
Watteau. Watteau. Watteau, however, cannot be ranked among 
the Immortals, for though his technique was marvellous, 
and his power of drawing unsurpassed, he like all his 

3 Now dead. 

and Le 

Naturalism in Pictorial and Glyptic Art. 85 

contemporaries, artists and otherwise, neglected nature, 
living as they did in the artificial times of Louis XIV. 
There is a picture in the National Gallery which well ex- 
plains what we mean. Then name after name is handed 
down to us, but in vain do we look for a master among 
them. Boucher and Greuze still have admirers, but they Boucher 
are not great painters, because they did not study nature & nd 
or at least did not succeed in painting her, as it is very 
easy to see from their works. Delacroix strove to rise Deia- 
from the artificial influence of the time, but he was not croix. 
strong enough to become a master. It was reserved for 
Ingres to make a real advance. He, though imbued to Ingres, 
some extent with the old spirit of classicism, was a deep 
lover of nature, and the story of the struggle for the 
mastery between those two opposing tendencies is the 
story of his art and life. Though he rises above all pre- 
vious painters of his country, he cannot be ranked with the 
masters. With Ary Scheffer there was a retrogression 
which in its turn was counteracted by Delaroche. It was 
Delaroche who afterwards said an artist would one day Dela- 
have to use photography. Still, in vain do we look for a roche - 
genius, and until Constable's pictures exhibited in 1 824 
in Paris, aroused the French as to the real aims of art, 
110 really great master appears. But when practical 
France saw, she immediately took up naturalism. Then 
we have first Decamps, who took up the newly revived Descauips. 
ideas, but failed, and Rousseau made the real departure 
the poetry and mystery of nature roused in him an 
ardent sympathy, and all honour to him for struggling on 
at Barbizon, in the face of the neglect and contumacy of 
the Salon. But Rousseau, hero though he was, never Rousseau, 
rose to be a mighty painter, and his works fall far 
behind those of the best painters of to-day, but as a 
pioneer his name will always be remembered, and though 
he failed, he at least took Nature as his watchword. 
After Rousseau came Corot, a master good for all time. Corot. 
His early works show signs of the classical spirit, from 
which he had not yet shaken himself free, thus we some- 
times see in his early works, peasants strangely habited and 

86 Naturalistic Photography. 

reminding one of the seventeenth century or ancient 
Greece, which is of course ridiculous; but his later work is 
true and great. Full of breadth and feeling for the subtle- 
ties and poetry of nature, he has never been surpassed. 
Examples of his work in England can sometimes be seen 
in the French Gallery, the Hanover Gallery and at 
GoupiFs, but it must be remembered that great as Corot 
is, there is much of his work that is bad. Another great 

Daubigny. painter is Daubigny, a contemporary of Corot's, and though 
not such a subtle observer as Corot, still he is a painter 
whose work has had great influence and will live though 

Troyon. ft nas been surpassed by younger men. Troyon was 
another who like Corot loved and studied and painted 
from nature, but he lacked the insight into nature that 
Corot had, and his work is not as true as that of his 

Millet. At length, however, we arrive at an Immortal name, 

that of Jean Frai^ois Millet. This great man must not 
be confounded with two Jean Frai^ois Millets who 
lived years before, and who were not artists at all though 
painters. Everything about J. F. Millet the Great, is 
worthy of study. Let the student seize every chance of 
studying his works, chances which will, alas ! be rare 
enough as many of his best pictures are in America and 
most of the others in France. His pastels and water- 
colours are not very good, but his etchings which (repro- 
duced) can be seen in the British Museum, are valuable 
for strength and power. Here is a directness of expres- 
sion never surpassed. Before leaving him we will quote 
a few passages from his letters : 

" I therefore concede that the beautiful is the suit- 

Millet - able. . . . Understand that I do not speak of absolute 
beauty, for I do not know what it is, and it seems to 
me only a tremendous joke. I think people who think 
and talk about it do so because they have no eyes for 
natural objects ; they are stultified by * finished art/ 
and think nature not rich enough to furnish all 
needs. Good people, they poetize instead of being poets. 
Characterize ! that is the object. 

" When Poussin sent to M. de Chantelon his picture of 

Naturalism in Pictorial and Glyptic Art. 87 

the e Manna/ he did not say, ' Look, what fine pate ! 
Isn't it swell ? Isn't it tip-top ? ' or any of this kind 
of thing which so many painters seem to consider of 
such value, though I cannot see why they should, He 
says : ' If you remember the first letter which I wrote 
to you about the movement of the figures which I pro- 
mised you to put in, and if you look at the whole picture 
I think you will easily understand which are those who 
languish, which are filled with admiration, those who 
pity, those who act from charity, from great necessity, 
from desire, from the wish to satiate themselves, and 
others for the first seven figures on the left hand will 
tell you all that is written above, and all the rest is of the 
same kind ! ' 

" Very few painters are sufficiently careful as to the 
effect of a picture seen at a distance great enough to see 
all at once, and as a whole. Even if a picture comes 
together as it should, you hear people say, 'Yes, but 
when you come near it is not finished ! ' Then of another, 
which does not look like anything at the distance from 
which it should be seen, c But look at it near by ; see how 
it is finished ! ' Nothing counts except the fundamental. 
If a tailor tries on a coat, he stands off at a distance 
enough to see the fit. If he likes the general look, it is 
time enough then to examine the details ; but if he should 
be satisfied with making fine button-holes and other acces- 
sories, even if they were chefs-d'oeuvre, on a badly-cut coat, 
he will none the less have made a bad job. Is not this 
true of a piece of architecture, or of anything else ? It is 
the manner of conception of a work which should strike 
us first, and nothing ought to go outside of that. It is 
an atmosphere beyond which nothing can exist. There 
should be a milieu of one kind or another, but that 
which is adopted should rule. 

" As confirmation to the proposition that details are 
only the complement of the fundamental construction, 
Poussin says, ' Being fluted (pilasters) and rich in them- 
selves, we should be careful not to spoil their beauty by 
the confusion of ornament, for such accessories and inci- 
dental subordinate parts are not adapted to works whose 

88 Naturalistic Photography. 

principal featnres are already beautiful, unless with great 
prudence and judgment, in order that this may give 
grace and elegance, for ornaments were only invented to 
modify a certain severity which constitutes pure archi- 

" We should accustom ourselves to receive from nature 
all our impressions, whatever they may be, and whatever 
temperament we may have. We should be saturated and 
impregnated with her, and think what she wishes to 
make us think. Truly, she is rich enough to supply us 
all. And whence should we draw, if not from the 
fountain-head? Why for ever urge, as a supreme aim 
to be reached, that which the great minds have already 
discovered in her, because they have ruined her with 
constancy and labour, as Palissy says ? But nevertheless, 
they have no right to dictate for mankind one example 
for ever. By that means the productions of one man 
would become the type and the aim of all the productions 
of the future. 

" Men of genius are gifted with a sort of divining-rod ; 
some discover in nature this, others that, according to 
their kind of scent. Their productions assure you that 
he who finds is formed to find; but it is funny to see 
how, when the treasure is unearthed, people come for 
ages to scratch at that one hole. The point is to know 
where to find truffles. A dog who has nofc scent will be 
but a poor hunter if he can only run at sight of another 
who scents the game, and who, of course, must always be 
the first. And if we only hunt through imitativeness, we 
cannot run with much spirit, for it is impossible to be 
enthusiastic about nothing. Finally, men of genius have 
the mission to show, out of the riches of nature, only 
that which they are permitted to take away, and to show 
them to those who would not have suspected their pre- 
sence, nor ever found them, as they have not the neces- 
sary faculties. They serve as translators and interpreters 
to those who cannot understand her language. They can 
say, like Palissy, ' You see these things in my cabinet/ 
They, too, may say, ' If you give yourself up to nature, 
as we have done, she will let you take away of these 

Naturalism in Pictorial and Glyptic Art. 89 

treasures according to your powers. You only need 
intelligence and good will/ 

" It must be an enormous vanity or an enormous folly 
that makes certain men believe that they can rectify the 
pretended lack of taste or the errors of Nature. On what 
authority do they lean ? With them who do not love 
her, and. who do not trust her, she does not let herself 
be understood, and retires into her shell. She must be 
constrained and reserved with them. And, of course, they 
say, ' The grapes are green. Since we cannot reach 
them, let us speak ill of them/ We might here apply 
the words of the prophet, ' God resisteth the proud, and 
giveth grace to the humble/ 

" Nature gives herself to those who take the trouble 
to court her, but she wishes to be loved exclusively. We 
love certain works only because they proceed from her. 
Every other work is pedantic and empty. 

" We can start from any point and arrive at the sub- 
lime, and all is proper to be expressed, provided our 
aim is high enough. Then what you love with the 
greatest passion and power becomes a beauty of your 
own, which imposes itself upon others. Let each bring 
his own. An impression demands expression, and espe- 
cially requires that which is capable of showing it most 
clearly and strongly. The whole arsenal of nature has 
ever been at the command of strong men, and their 
genius has made them take, not the things which are 
conventionally called the most beautiful, but those which 
suited best their places. In its own time and place, has 
not everything its part to play ? Who shall dare to say 
that a potato is inferior to a pomegranate ? 

" Decadence set in when people began to believe that 
art, which she (Nature) had made, was the supreme end ; 
when such and such an artist was taken as a model and 
aim without remembering that he had his eyes fixed on 

" They still spoke of Nature, but meant thereby only 
the life-model which they used, but from whom they got 
nothing but conventionalities. If, for instance, they had 
to paint a figure out of doors, they still copied, for the 

90 Naturalistic Photography. 

purpose, a model lighted by a studio light, without ap- 
pearing to dream that it bad no relation to the luminous 
diffusion of light out of doors a proof that they were 
not moved by a very deep emotion, which would have 
prevented artists from being satisfied with so little. For, 
as the spiritual can only be expressed by the observation 
of objects 'in their truest aspect, this physical untruth 
annihilated all others. There is no isolated truth. 

" The moment that a man could do something masterly 
in painting, it was called good. If he had great anato- 
mical knowledge, he made that pre-eminent, and was 
greatly praised for it, without thinking that these fine 
acquirements ought to serve, as indeed all others should, 
to express the thoughts of the mind. Then, instead of 
thoughts, he would have a programme. A subject would 
be sought which would give him a chance to exhibit 
certain things which came easiest to his hand. Finally, 
instead of making one's knowledge the humble servant 
of one's thought, on the contrary, the thought was suffo- 
cated under the display of a noisy cleverness. Each eyed 
his neighbour, and was full of enthusiasm for a manner." 
Bastien- Bastien-Lepage we had judged from reproductions, 
Lepage, j^ we g n( ^ i ate iy ? on seeing some of his work, that 
we had all along misjudged him, thinking him a much 
greater painter than he really is. This study of Bas- 
tien-Lepage has been a revelation to us of the quite 
'misleading and dangerous power of reproductions of a 
painter's work in black and white. All the black and 
white reproductions that we have seen of this painter's 
work give the impression of much greater work than the 
originals really are, and we would caution all our readers 
against judging of any painter's or sculptor's work by a 
reproduction by any method, from etching to cheap 
wood-cutting, for they may be woefully misled. We 
feel sure these reproductions no matter of what kind 
will have a very harmful effect on art, and will give 
quite wrong opinions of work ; and they are, no matter of 
what kind, whether etching, engraving, photo-etching, 
woodcut, or photograph, to be strongly condemned. Bas- 
tien-Lepage is not even always strong in drawing, and his 

Naturalism in Pictorial and Glyptic Art. 91 

sentiment is often false, untrue, and brutal, and not nearly 
so fine as Courbet's sentiment, yet Courbet's preceded 
him ; he was but a follower, where Courbet was a leader. 

Of the older living painters, Jules Breton and Lher- Breton 
mitte stand out as strong men ; but Breton has long ago *^ 
been passed, and Lhermitte is not the man he was, but 
some of Lhermitte's work will live always. There is a 
remarkably fine Lhermitte in the Luxembourg, which 
every one should try and see. Both are naturalistic 
painters. Of other living painters much might be written, 
for they, in our opinion, represent the acme of painting 
and its highest development. We feel that we never saw 
painting done to perfection until we saw the Paris Salon, 
and we strongly recommend all readers of this book, after 
they have studied the pictures and sculptures here referred 
to, and have some insight into nature, to make without 
fail a yearly pilgrimage to the French Salon, where they 
will see painting at its highest development, though of 
course there is much bad work in the Salon, as at other 

The marvellous pastel work, aquarelles, and charcoal 
drawings will all show them how immeasurably behind 
France, England is in all the pictorial arts. Englishmen 
do not know what drawing is therein lies the cause of 
their failure. This very year we went to the Academy 
the day after seeing the Salon, and what a fall was there ! 

Of living French painters the work the student should 
carefully study is that of Meissonier, 4 Cabanel, Carolus 
Duran, Pelouse, Protais, Detaille, Perrandeau, Doucet, 
Petitjean, Busson, Landelle, Appian, Cazin, Harpignies, 
La Touche, Lansyer, Le Koux, C.M.G., Abraham, 
Anthonissen, Moreau de Tours, Nys, No billet, Marinier, 
Michel M. Japy, Carne, Vallois, Jan-Monchablon, Joubert, 
Boucher, J. F., Cabrit, Durot, Poithevin, Beauvais, 
Den ant, Dufour, and many others whose names we forget 
for the moment, but, be it said, all naturalistic painters 
to a marvellous degree. 

This brings us to the end, so we will leave painting 
with France in the van and Holland and Belgium closely 
4 Now dead. 

Naturalistic Photography. 


following and America and England floundering in the 
rear of these three, for we are no believers in the tall talk 
of the greatness of the immediate future of English paint- 
ing, though there is good hope since an earnest and 
sincere band of young artists has arisen in England 
whose watchword is " Naturalism." 


With sculpture the same old story greets us that we 
meet with in the history of painting. After the master- 
pieces of Greece come the puerile conventionalities of 
the Early Christians. But as we have hitherto done so 
shall we continue that is, we shall discuss the masters 
only, and the first we come to is Niccola Pisano. Though 
his work shows that he was still imbued with the spirit 
of classicism, yet he struggled to throw off the paralyzing 
conventionality of servile imitation, and tried hard to get 
back to nature, and some of his sculptures in Pisa are 
wonderful for expression. He was the pioneer where 
followed the great Donatello. Pisano's son worked in 
the same direction as his father, and has left some won- 
derful architectural monuments and sculptures, but his 
fame rests chieny on his architectural works, with which 
we are not here concerned. Andrea and Nino Pisano 
made great strides towards truth and naturalness, and 
so paved the way for the great man to come. They were 
Ghiberti. immediately followed by Ghiberti, who spent many years 
of his life in working at the well-known mighty doors of 
the baptistery at Pisa. These great gates, however, show 
no subtlety of the sculptor's art. Tonality there is none ; 
the whole is rather a kind of emblematic picture-writing 
than sculpture, but Ghiberti says he spent his time in 
" studying nature and investigating her methods of 
work," so that even though he did not succeed, nature 
was his watchword. But all these sink into insignificance 
before the mighty name of Donatello. Like all true and 
great artists, Donatello appreciated the limits of his art, 
made naturalism his watchword, and followed his prin- 
ciples with sincerity. Whilst we are now writing, the 
wonderful low relief of St. Cecilia, which is on view at 

and Nino 


Naturalism in Pictorial and Glyptic Art. 93 

Burlington House, is fresh in our mind. There is the 
work in dark marble, looking as fresh, beautiful, life- 
like, and artistic, as it did the day it left the artist's 
hand. What simplicity, what truth of impression, and 
what subtle tonality is there seen ! Those who remember 
this masterpiece may have noticed the way in which the 
outline of the neck is raised, and how untrue it looked 
close to ; but at a distance the impression was perfect, and 
the suggestion of shadow most beautifully rendered. That 
the modelling of the mouth is feeble is obvious, but where 
is perfection ? Casts of this work can be had for a mere 
trifle from Bruciani, Covent Garden, and we strongly 
recommend those who have not seen the original to get 
one, for a suggestion of such work is better than a gallery 
of trash. There is another fine specimen of Donatello's 
work in low relief at South Kensington, but in that there 
is the mark of the allegorical, and it just misses the dis- 
tinguished and simple character of the St. Cecilia. We do 
not care for his Judith and Holof ernes, though it is one of 
the most noted of his works, and owes its renown more 
to its historical association than to its artistic qualities. 
Where Donatello relied on nature, however, his work is 
unsurpassed for truth and subtlety. It was natural that 
such a great man should have many followers, but, like 
most imitators of genius, they copied his bad points and 
none of his good ones, for these they could not attain to, 
not being geniuses themselves. The wonderful medals 
of Vittore Pisano or Pisanello must not be forgotten, as 
they are well worthy of study. The student can get casts 
of most of these for a trifling sum, and we strongly 
recommend him to buy a few casts of Pisanello' s medals. D 

The work of the Delia Eobbia family is so well known R bbi. 
that we must touch upon it, although for most of it 
we care little or nothing, the medium, a glazed terra- 
cotta, being unnatural. Lucca, the greatest of the family, 
worked, however, at first in marble. Here and there in 
his work one meets with a beautiful face, and often with 
fine expressions, but the whole lacks simplicity and 
fineness. He was more a decorative artist than a 

Q4 Naturalistic Photography. 

M. Angelo. Of Michael Angelo we have spoken. Benvenuto 
Cellini. Cellini, a name well known, was a master in gold- work- 
ing, but hardly a sculptor. Many lesser names follow, 
but no immortal is again seen in Italy ; for though Canova 
Canova. made a name of some sort, he was no master. After 
Michael Angelo came imitation and decline. Neglect of 
nature, together with patronage, killed the spark of art, 
and so thoroughly killed it that even writers on art who 
had no art-training were listened to, as Winckelmaun and 
Lessing, but their work only produced an artificial 
Thorwald- afflatus, as Canova and Thorwaldsen proved, for both 
sen. were small men, false in sentiment, and with little or no 

insight into nature. We say this advisedly, after seeing 
much of Canova's work and nearly all that of Thor- 
waldsen. There is no nature in their works, but 
in addition to a classical sentiment a puerile realism 
which is still in vogue in Italy to-day in such work 
as a Pears delights in, " You Dirty Boy " and other 
trivialities. England, Spain, Holland, and America seem, 
up to the present, not to have produced a single sculptor, 
but, in our humble opinion, the young sculptors of Eng- 
land will lead the way in the twentieth century, and the 
world may look for the advent of an immortal master 
and for work which will surpass the Greeks. At present 
Modern France leads the way, and has some strong men in 
French Jouffrey, Aube, Falguiere, Rodin; but there, too, the 
tendeDcy seems to be towards a fumbling realism and 
petty motif. There is much talk of French sculpture 
being in advance of French painting. We do not believe 
it, and we feel that England is at present the only country 
Future of where there is any distinct and original school of 
English sculpture, with such modellers as Gilbert and Onslow 
:u pture. ji or( ^ and with such a sculptor as Havard Thomas, to 
say nothing of younger men, the outlook is very bright 
Final indeed. 

advice. ^ n( j now we mus t end the chapter with the final advice 

to the student to study deeply all good examples of the 
great artists whose work we have noted, and to leave all 
others alone. By and by the student will find that he is 
in a position to compare the good with the bad, then 

Naturalism in Pictorial and Glyptic Art. 95 

will it be time enough for him to look at the second-rate 
work, much of which contains fine passages here and 
there and special merits of its own ; but these cannot 
be appreciated until the student has considerable know- 
ledge, and that is only to be obtained by a serious study 
of nature and of the work of the best masters here cited. 
Finally, we think we have shown that " Naturalism " 
has been the watchword of all the best artists, and that, 
after all, there are but few artists in any age. Many 
painters and modellers and sculptors there be, but artists 

are few indeed. One point which has impressed us in 

, . , T , , n i Barometer 

tJbe inquiry into naturalistic art is the curious regularity O f natural- 

with which so-called ' ' imaginative " painters have ap- ism. 
peared and made reputations for themselves in the 
after-glow, so to speak, of the setting sun of natu- 
ralism. It would appear that painters who have lived 
in an age of strong men have got fairly staggered by 
the good naturalistic work of their age, and have instinc- 
tively felt that, being no match for the great masters on 
their own lines, that their only way to fame and fortune 
is by eccentricity, and in assuming a superior tone of 
culture by the production of allegorical or classical 
inanities. The uneducated of their own generation, 
thoroughly tired of a naturalism whose aim they have never 
understood, hail with delight any novelty or new departure, 
and they praise puerility and falseness of colour as colour, 
false drawing as idealizing, conventional composition as 
original, the conventional and modern treatment of dra- 
peries beneath which no anatomy is discernible as an 
idealized and poetic treatment of drapery, and finally, 
in the subject of the picture they often mistake senti- 
mentality for sentiment and sentiment for poetry. Thus 
these weaker men rise to fame, and many follow where 
they lead. But the generation which gave them fame 
dies, and a new generation, which has forgotten the 
triumph of the naturalistic masters of the past generation, 
wearies of thein,andnaturalistic work is again appreciated. 
The story of art seems to us like the mercury in a baro- 
meter, ever oscillating upwards and downwards, ever up 
towards the acme of naturalism, and ever down towards the 

96 Naturalistic Photography. 

abyss of conventionality and classicism. If we mentally 
map out the readings of this barometer on a chart, we shall 
find naturalism triumphant as the apex of each curve, 
whilst in the ascending curve will be found the strugglers 
towards naturalism, and in the descending curve the 
fallers away from naturalism. On the apices of these 
curves will be found triumphant the masters, such as the 
The sculptors of the Egyptian lions, the sculptors of the As- 

masters. Syrian lion-hunts, Pheidias, Van Eyck, Durer, Holbein, 
Da Yinci, Titian, Velasquez, Donatello, Rembrandt, De 
Hooghe, Corot, Millet, Gainsborough, and Whistler. 




HAVING thus demonstrated that the best artists have 
always tried to interpret nature, and express by their art 
an impression of nature as nearly as possible similar 
to that made on the retina of the human eye, it will be 
well to inquire on scientific grounds what the normal 
human eye really does see. 

Our contention is that a picture should be a transla- The arg 
tion of a scene as seen by the normal human eye. That m ent. 
the impression will vary with individuals, there is no 
doubt, for the artist will see subtleties never dreamed of 
by the commonplace or uneducated eye, and his aim 
will, of course, be to portray those subtleties in his 
picture, and hence one source of individuality in a work, 
another being in the way in which it is done. Our 
task now shall be to examine into the physical, physio- 
logical and psychological properties of sight, and 
to arrive at a conclusion, in so far as science allows 
us, as to how the normal eye does see things. The 
student will do well to read Chapter II. of Book III. of 
Dr. Michael Foster's "Text Book of Physiology/' as 
well as the matter on the eye in Ganot's Physics, before 
going any further in this chapter, for we do not wish to 
go over ground which has been occupied previously, onr 
aim being to give a view from the artistic standpoint of 
the physical, physiological, and psychological properties 
of eyesight. We will, then, proceed to consider how well 
we see external nature, that is, within what limits, for 
we never see her exactly as she is, as we shall show. 

To begin with, then, the retinal nerves are strictly Optic 
reserved to respond to the vibrations of ether nerves. 


9 S Naturalistic Photography. 

called light. If the student has ever had a blow on 
his eye, he has probably seen " stars/' because every 
stimulus to this pair of nerves makes us see things, 
and not feel them. Now each sense has certain limits 
between which it can detect subtle vibrations, but be- 
yond which all is blank. The more refined the organiza- 
tion of the person, the greater will be the number of 
vibrations he can distinguish. Thus 399,000,000,000 
vibrations in a second produce in us the sensation of 
light, above this the vibrations appear as spectral colours 
until the number 831,000,000,000,000 is reached ; to an 
increase in the number of vibrations above that number 
the optic nerve does not respond. Now the eye is an 
optical apparatus fixed between the brain and the 
ether, not that we may perceive light, for we could do 
that without the eye, but that we may distinguish objects. 
The glyptic and pictorial arts are founded entirely on the 
sense of sight as music is founded on the sense of hearing. 
In the pictorial arts, then, we must clearly distinguish 
between the physical, physiological, and psychological 
properties of sight. 

Le Conte's -^ e Conte divides the scientific, i.e. physical and physio- 
division, logical data, into : A. Light ; B. Direction of Light ; C. 
Intensity; D. Colour; and the psychological data into 
Binocular vision, size, solidity, and depth. Following up 
Le Conte's scheme, let us begin, then, to discuss briefly 
the scientific data, that is, considering the apparatus 
purely from the standpoint of physics and physiology. 

Light. A. LIGHT. 

I. Physical characters of the eye as an optical instru- 

If a ray of light passes through a small hole into a 
darkened room (pin-hole camera), an image is formed of 
the object or objects without. The condition of a good 
definition of the image is that "all the rays from each 
point on the object must be carried to its own point on 
the image." If this hole be enlarged, this coudition is 
impossible, and the light spreads over certain areas 
called diffusion areas or diffusion circles. In other 

Phenomena of Sight, &c. 99 

words, widely divergent rays and contiguous rays become 
mixed. To admit more light a lens is used in the 
eye, and by the photographer, for although it is possible 
(by pin-hole camera) to take pictures without a lens, the 
light so admitted is necessarily so limited that the ex- 
posure needed is too long. The lens, however, helps 
us by admitting more light, and at the same time 
giving better definition, but it also introduces many 
disadvantages and sources of error. Now a theoreti- 
cally perfect physical image has been described by 
physicists as being both bright and sharp in definition, 
but the theoretically perfect image does not exist ; for, 
apart from other considerations, the lens which we use to 
get microscopic sharpness, cuts off light, and the sharper 
the image is rendered by stops, the less brightness do 
we get. Thus we pee the lens introduces scores of errors 
as well as desirable qualities. 

In the human and photographic lenses the chief faults 
are : 

Dispersion. All refraction or bending of light by a 
lens is accompanied by dispersion. This error is corrected 81on ; 
in opticians' lenses to a great extent. In the human 
eye, however, this fault is in some degree present, as 
can be proved by looking at a lighted street lamp 
through a violet glass, when a red flame will be seen 
surrounded by a bluish-violet halo. What, then, is the . 
effect of dispersion on our theoretically perfect image ? 
It is slight blurring of the sharpness of outline, since 
the size and position of the optical images thrown by the 
differently bent rays is not the same. 

A lens having a spherical surface bends the rays so Spherical 
that they do not all come to a focus at the same point. " 1 
What is the effect of this on our theoretically perfect ' 
image ? Again it is slight blurring of the sharpness of 
outline. It is said the spherical aberration in a perfectly 
corrected optician's lens is less than that in the lens of 
the human eye. This must be remembered in connection 
with our later remarks. In the lower animals, spherical 
aberration is nearly absent. Their vision therefore is 
more periscopic, and therefore more like that of an 
optician's lens. 

H 2 

TOO Naturalistic Photography. 

Astigma- This defect can be avoided in the optician's lens, 
but it exists in, and is a serious fault of, the human 

Helmholtz considers the amount of spherical aberra- 
tion unimportant as compared with this defect. Astigma- 
tism is the result of imperfect symmetrical curvature of 
the cornea and of imperfect centering of the cornea and 
lens. This defect is found in most human eyes. 

Astigmatism prevents the eye seeing vertical and 
horizontal lines at the same distance perfectly clearly at 
once. The defect in centering also causes irregular 
radiation, so that, as Helmholtz says, " The images of an 
illuminated point as the human eye brings them to focus, 
are inaccurate/' What is the effect of those defects on 
the " perfect image " ? Dimness of outline and detail 
in the textures of objects seen. 

Turbidity. The optician's lens is made of pure glass, the media of 
the human eye are not clear, but slightly turbid, so that 
Helmholtz says, " The obscurity of dark objects when 
seen near very bright ones depends essentially on this 
defect. This defect is most apparent in the blue and 
violet rays of the solar spectrum ; for then comes in the 

Fluores- phenomena of fluorescence to increase it/' By fluo- 

cence. rescence is meant the property which certain minutely 
divided substances possess of becoming faintly luminous, 
so long as they receive violet and blue light. The bottles 
filled with solution containing quinine, which look blue 
in the chemists' windows, owe their colour to this fact, as 
also does the blueness of " London " milk. These defects, 
combined with entoptic impurities which are constantly 
floating about in the humours, all help to detract from 
the brightness and sharpness of the " perfect image." 

Blmd This is a portion of the retinal field with no cones or 

rods, and therefore insensitive to light. This causes a 
gap in the field of vision. " This blind spot is so large 
that it might prevent our seeing eleven full moons if 
placed side by side, or a man's face at a distance of only 
six or seven feet,'' says Helmholtz. In addition to this, 
there are lesser gaps in the retinal field, due to the 
cutting off of light by the shadows thrown by the blood 

Phenomena of Sight, &c. 101 

vessels. Any one who has examined the retinal field 
with an ophthalmoscope knows what this means. 

In addition to this the macula lutea is less sensitive to Macula 
weak light than other parts of the retina. The effect of lutea. 
all these imperfections is to blur and dull the perfect 
image. The serious defects due to the blind spot are 
not noticed, according to Helmholtz, because tc we are 
continually moving the eye, and also that the imperfec- 
tions almost always affect those parts of the field to which 
we are not at the moment directing our attention." The 
italics are ours. Here, then, is another great difference 
between the eye and the optician's lens. 

The focus of the eye in a passive state is adjusted to Focussing 
the most distant objects. It focusses for nearer objects 
by contracting the ciliary muscle which pulls tight the 
zonule of Zinn and so curves the crystalline lens. It can 
focus thus up to within five inches of itself, but the 
changes of focus are almost imperceptible to the eye 
beyond twenty feet. Now a theoretically perfect eye 
might form perfect images of objects at infinite distances 
when there were no intervening objects. But as has 
already been shown, the eye is very imperfect, and its 
images are not therefore perfect, and it could not form 
theoretically perfect images, even if the atmosphere were 
pure ether and nothing else, for there are other facts 
in nature which prevent this ; thus we cannot see a sharp 
image of the sun with the naked eye on account of its 
dazzling brightness. 

This central spot is a most important factor in the Fovea 
study of sight and art. For though the field of vision ce 
of the two eyes is more than 180 laterally, and 120 
vertically, yet the field of distinct vision is but a fraction 
of this field, as we can all prove for ourselves. Now 
the field of distinct vision depends on the central spots 
for the reason that the central spot differs anatomically 
from the rest of the retina by the absence of certain 
layers which we need not specify here. The absence 
of these layers exposes the retinal bacillary layer 
to the direct action of light. Helmholtz says "all 
other parts of the retinal image beyond that which falls 

IO2 Naturalistic Photography. 

on the central spot are imperfectly seen/' so that the 
image which we receive by the eye is like a picture 
minutely and elaborately finished in the centre, but only 
roughly sketched in at the borders. But although at 
each instant we only see a very small part of the field of 
vision accurately, we see this in combination with what 
surrounds it, and enough of this outer and larger part of 
the field, to notice any striking object, and particularly 
any change that takes place in it." If the objects are 
small, they cannot be discerned with the rest of the 
retina, thus, to see a lark in the sky, Helmholtz says it 
must be focussed* on the central spot. Finally he says, 
" To look at anythiug means to place the eye in such a 
Direct and position that the image of the object falls on the small 
indirect region of perfectly clear vision. This we may call direct 
vision. vision, applying the term indirect to that exercised with 
the lateral parts of the retina, indeed with all except the 
central spot." Again, he says, "Whatever we want to 
see we look at and see it accurately ; what we do not 
look at, we do not as a rule care for at the moment, and 
so do not notice how imperfectly we see it." Now all 
this is most important in connection with art, as we shall 
show later, we must beg the student therefore to hold it 

It will be seen from all this that a perfect periscopic 
image is never seen by the eye of man, though in some 
of the lower animals the matter may be different. 


Law of Le Conte says, " The retinal image impresses the retina 

projection. j n a d e fi n ite way ; this impression is then conveyed by 
the optic nerve to the brain, and determines changes 
there, definite in proportion to the distinctness of the 
retinal ima'ge, and then the brain or the mind refers or 
projects this impression outward into space as an external 
image, the sign and facsimile of an object which produces 
it." Not only does this hold good of external images, but 
in certain diseases retinal impressions arising from 

spending within are projected outwards, thus ghosts are seen. 

points, &c. "From Miiller's law/' Le Conte further says, "it is 

Phenomena of Sight, &c. 103 

evident that each point every rod or cone in the 
retina has its invariable correspondent in the visual field, 
and vice versa." 

Le Centers law of visible direction states that, " Where La y of 
the rays from any radiant strike the retina the impression direction 
is referred back along the ray line (the central ray 
of the pencil) into space, and therefore to ifcs proper 

From these laws we understand why we see things in 
the relative positions which they occupy in space. 

All the previous remarks are applicable to monocular 


A quotation from Helmholtz will best illustrate this Intensity. 
point. He says, " If the artist is to imitate exactly the 
impression which the object produces on our eye, he 
ought to be able to dispose of brightness and darkness 
equal to that which nature offers. But of this there can 
be no idea. Let me give a case in point. Let there be 
in a picture-gallery a desert scene, in which a procession 
of Bedouins, shrouded in white, and of dark negroes, 
marches under the burning sunshine; close to it a bluish, 
moonlight scene, where the moon is reflected in the 
water, and groups of trees, and human forms, are seen 
to be faintly indicated in the darkness. You know from 
experience that both pictures, if they are well done, can 
produce with surprising vividness the representation of 
their objects ; and yet in both pictures the brightest 
parts are produced with the same white lead, which is 
but slightly altered by admixtures ; while the darkest 
parts are produced with black. Both being hung on 
the same wall, share the same light, and the brightest as 
,well as the darkest parts of the two scarcely differ as 
concerns the degree of their brightness. 

How is it, however, with the actual degrees of bright- 
ness represented. The relation between the lightness 
of the sun's light, and that of the moon, was measured 
by Wollaston, who compared their intensities with that 
of the light of candles of the same material. He thus 

IO4 Naturalistic Photography. 

found that the luminosity of the sun is 800,000 times 
that of the brightest light of a full moon. 

An opaque body, which is lighted from any source 
whatever, can, even in the most favourable case, only 
emit as much light as falls upon it. Yet, from Lambert's 
observatioDS, even the whitest bodies ouly reflect about 
two-fifths of the incident light. The sun's rays, which 
proceed parallel from the sun, whose diameter is 85,000 
miles, when they reach us, are distributed uniformly 
over a sphere of 195 millions of miles in diameter. Its 
density and illuminating power is here only one-forty- 
thousandt h of that with which it left the sun's surface ; 
and Lambert's number leads to the conclusion that even 
the brightest white surface on which the sun's rays fall 
vertically, has only the one-hundred-thousandth part of 
the brightness of the sun's disk. The moon, however, 
is a grey body, whose mean brightness is only about 
one-fifth that of the purest white. 

And when the moon irradiates a body of the purest 
white on the earth, its brightness is only the hundred- 
thousandth part of the brightness of the moon itself ; 
hence the sun's disk is 80,000 million times brighter 
than a white which is irradiated by the full moon. 

Now, pictures which hang in a room are not lighted 
by the direct light of the sun, but by that which is 
reflected from the sky and clouds. I do not know of 
any direct measurements of the ordinary brightness of 
the light in a picture-gallery ; but estimates may be 
made from known data. With strong upper light, and 
bright light fn m the clouds, the purest white on a picture 
has probably l-20th of the brightness of white directly 
lighted by the sun ; it will generally be only l-40th, or 
even less. 

Hence the painter of the desert, even if he gives up 
the representation of the sun's disk, which is always very 
imperfect, will have to represent the glaringly lighted 
garments of his Bedouins with a white which, in the 
most favourable case, shows only the l-20th part of the 
brightness which corresponds to actual fact. If he 
could bring it, with its lighting unchanged, into the 

Phenomena of Sight, <ff<r. 105 

desert near the white there, it would seem like a dark 
grey. I found, in fact, by an experiment, that lamp- 
black, lighted by the sun, is not less than half as bright 
as shaded white in the brighter part of a room. 

On the picture of the moon the same white which has 
been used for depicting the Bedouins' garments must be 
used for representing the moon's disk, and its reflection 
in the water ; although the real moon has only one-fifth 
of this brightness, and its reflection in water still less. 
Hence white garments in moonlight, or marble surfaces, 
even when the artist gives them a grey shade, will always 
be ten to twenty times as bright in his picture as they 
are in reality. 

On the other hand, the darkest black which the artist 
could apply would be scarcely sufficient to represent the 
real illumination of a white object on which the moon 
shone. For even the deadest black coatings of lamp- 
black and black velvet, when powerfully lighted, appear 
grey, as we often enough know to our cost, when we 
wish to shut off superfluous light. I investigated a 
coating of lamp-black, and found its brightness to be 
about one-hundredth that of white paper. The brightest 
colours of a painter are only about one hundred times as 
bright as his darkest shades. 

The statements I have made may appear exaggerated. 
But they depend upon measurements, and you can control 
them by well-known observations. According to Wol- 
laston, the light of the full moon is equal to that of a 
candle burning at a distance of twelve feet. Now, assume 
that you suddenly go from a room in. daylight to a vault 
perfectly dark, with the exception of the light of a single 
candle. You would at first think you were in absolute 
darkness, and at most you would only recognize the 
candle itself. In any case, you would not recognize the 
slightest trace of- any objects at a distance of thirteen feet 
from the candle. These, however, are the objects whose 
illumination is the same as that which the moonlight 
gives. You would only become accustomed to the dark- 
ness after some time, and you would then find your way 
about without difficulty. 

io5 Naturalistic Photography. 

If now, you return to the daylight, which before was 
perfectly comfortable, it will appear so dazzling that you 
will, perhaps, have to close your eyes, and only be able 
to gaze round with a painful glare. You see thus that 
we are concerned here not with minute, but with colossal, 
differences. How now is it possible that, under such 
circumstances, we can imagine there is any similarity 
between the picture and reality ? 

Our discussion of what we did not see at first, but 
could afterwards see in the vault, points to the most 
important element in the solution ; it is the varying 
extent to which our senses are deadened by light; a 
process to which we can attach the same name, fatigue, 
as that for the corresponding one in the muscle. Any 
activity of our nervous system diminishes its power for 
the time being. The muscle is tired by work, the brain 
is tired by thinking, and by mental operations ; the eye 
is tired by light, and the more so the more powerful 
the light. Fatigue makes it dull and insensitive to new 
impressions, so that it appreciates strong ones only 
moderately, and weak ones not at all. 

But now you see how different is the aim of the artist 
when these circumstances are taken into account. The 
eye of the traveller in the desert, who is looking at the 
caravan, has been dulled to the last degree by the 
dazzling sunshine ; while that of the wanderer by moon- 
light has been raised to the extreme of sensitiveness. 
The condition of one who is looking at a picture differs 
from both the above cases, by possessing a certain mean 
degree of sensitiveness. Accordingly, the painter must 
endeavour to produce by his colours, on the moderately 
sensitive eye of the spectator, the same impression as 
that which the desert, on the one hand, produces on the 
deadened, and the moonlight, on the other hand, creates 
on the untired eye of its observer. Hence, along with 
the actual luminous phenomena of the outer world, the 
different physiological conditions of the eye play a most 
important part in the work of the artist. What he has 
to give is not a mere transcript of the object, but a 
translation of his impression into another scale of sen- 

Phenomena of Sight, &c. 107 

sitiveness, which belongs to a different degree of im- 
pressibility of the observing eye, in which, the organ 
speaks a very different dialect in responding to the 
impressions of the outer world. 

In order to understand to what conclusions this leads, Fechner's 
I must first explain the law which Fechner discovered law - 
for the scale of sensitiveness of the eye, which is a 
particular case of the more general psycho-physical law 
of the relations of the various sensuous impressions to 
the irritations which produce them. This law may be 
expressed as follows : Within very wide limits of bright- 
ness, differences in the strength of light are equally distinct, 
or appear equal in sensation, if they form an equal fraction 
of the total quantity of light compared. 

Thus, for instance, differences in intensity of one- 
hundredth of the total amount can be recognized with- 
out great trouble, with very different strengths of light, 
without exhibiting material differences in the certainty 
and facility of the estimate, whether the brightest 
daylight, or the light of a good candle be used/' 

Herein, then, are contained the limits with which we 
can work, and the physiological reasons why we can render 
a fairly true impression of a scene in nature. 

The only constant factor, then, is the ratio of luminous 
intensities, that is, the picture must be as true as 
possible in relative tones or values. Obviously a picture 
of bright sunlight should look brighter in a moderately 
lighted room than the surrounding room, that is, its first 
impression on the observer should be as if he were 
looking at a landscape beyond the walls, through the 

From these remarks it will be seen how utterly im- 
possible it is to render truly a bright sunlight scene, for 
if the values be true, starting from the top of the scale, 
the highest light, when you get to the middle tints, they 
are too black already, and the picture is out of tone and 
false. Obviously the right way is to start from the 
lower end of the scale, the darks, and get them as true 
as possible, and let the lights take care of themselves ; 
but more of this anon. 

loS Naturalistic Photography. 


Colour. As photographers, the matter of colour exercises us 

but indirectly, still the subject should be understood, on 
account of its bearing on painting. " Colour perception," 
says Le Conte, " is a single perception, and irresolvable 
with any other. It must, therefore, have its basis in 
retinal structure/' 

Helmholtz divides the vibrations of ether known as 
light into three degrees. He says the longest and 
shortest rays do not essentially differ in any other 
physical property, except that we distinguish them from 
the intermediate waves." Thus the ear can receive at once 
many waves of sound or notes, and they remain distinct, 
but notes of colour do not keep distinct in the same 
way, "so that the eye is capable of recognizing few 
differences in quality of light," says Helmholtz, and can 
only perceive the elementary sensation of colour by 
artificial preparation. He also says, the only bond 
between the objective and subjective phenomena of colour 
may be stated as a law thus, " Similar light produces under 
like conditions a like sensation of colour. Light, which 
under like conditions, excites unlike sensations of colour 
is dissimilar ;" what we want in art, then, is the appearance 
of the phenomena. The illumination of the sun's rays 
cannot be weakened without at the same time weakening 
their heating and chemical action ; this is a point to be 
remembered in exposure. 

Colour is, of course, excited by the length of the 
waves and their frequency, red being the longest and 
slowest, and they diminish in length and increase in 
frequency in the order of the spectrum through 
orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo, to the shortest 
waves, which produce the effect of violet, the whole 
combined forming white. Now Hering has shown that 
there are only four primary colour sensations, though he 
at one time included black and white, thus making six. 
The four are red, yellow, green, and blue, which are 
reduced by him to two complementary colours, red and 
green, and yellow and blue. In our present state of 
knowledge the Young -Helmholtz theory of three primary 

Phenomena of Sight, &c. 109 

colour sensations for red, green, and blue seems prefer- 
able as a working hypothesis, though it seems incom- 
patible with anatomical and physiological facts. 

All objective differences between colours, according Difference 
to Helrnholtz, may be reduced to differences of tone, ol 
difference of fulness (saturation), and difference of 
brightness. These are the three colour constants. 

By tone, or hue, he means in fact difference of colour 
as in the spectral colours. He here refers to the vibration 
on a tonic scale. Fulness or purity is greatest in the pure 
tints of the spectrum, and becomes less in proportion as 
they are mixed with white light. All compound colours 
are less full than the simple hues of the spectrum. 

Brightness or luminosity is strength of light, or amount 
of illumination. It is measured by the total amount of 
light reflected to the eye. 

In nature black and white must be included among 
the primary colours when quality is spoken of, as light 
acts on black and white. 

All differences of tone, therefore, are the result of 
combinations in different proportions of the four primary 

Among the defects of the eye in seeing colour, 
Helmholtz says, " All are red blind at the innermost 
portion of the h'eld of vision, all red colours appear 
darker when viewed indirectly." 

The furthest limit of visible field is a narrow zone, 
in which all distribution of colour ceases, and there 
only remain differences of brightness. Probably those 
nervous fibres which convey impressions of green light 
are alone present in this part of the retina. The yellow 
spot makes all blue light appear somewhat darker in the 
centre of the field. 

All these inequalities are known and more or less 
rectified by constant movement. As the eye becomes 
fatigued by bright light, so that it cannot at first answer 
to delicate stimulus, so it can become partially fatigued 
for certain colours. 

Fatigue weakens the apparent illumination of the 
entire field of vision. 

no Naturalistic Photography. 

The colour of illumination of a picture, too, varies 
greatly by effect of local colour. 

What is constant in the colour of an object is not the 
brightness and colour of the light which it reflects, but 
the relation between the intensity of the different-coloured 
constituents of this light, on the one hand, and that of the 
corresponding constituents of the light which illuminates 
it on the other. For example, white paper in full moon- 
light is darker than black satin in daylight, or a dark 
object with the sun shining on it reflects light of exactly 
the same colour, and perhaps the same brightness, as a 
white object in shadow. Grey in shadow looks like 

Brightness of local colour diminishes with the illumina- 
tion or as the fatigue of the retina is increased. In sunshine, 
local coloursof moderate brightness approach the brightest, 
whereas in moonlight they approach the darkest. Pic- 
tures to be seen in daylight do not admit of difference of 
brightness between sun and moon. As colours increase 
in brightness, red and yellow become apparently stronger 
than blue. Painters make yellow tints predominate when 
representing landscape in full sunshine, while moonlight 
scenes are blued. Helmholtz says : " Differences of 
colour which are actually before our eyes are more easily 
apprehended than those which we only keep in memory, 
and contrast between objects which are close to one 
another in the field of vision are more easily recognized 
than when they are at a distance. All this contributes to 
the effect. Indeed, there are a number of subordinate 
circumstances affecting the result which it would be very 
interesting to follow out in detail, for they throw great 
light upon the way in which we judge of local colour ; 
but we must not pursue the inquiry further here. I will 
only remark that all these effects of contrast are not less 
interesting for the scientific painter than for the physiolo- 
gist, since he must often exaggerate the natural pheno- 
menon of contrast in order to produce the impression of 
greater varieties of light and greater fulness of colour 
than can be actually produced by artificial pigments/' 

Again, when turbidity is composed of fine particles its 

Phenomena of Sight, &c. 1 1 1 

appearance is blue, as the mists seen in autumn hanging 
round coverts, but it is whiter than the aerial blue because 
of the colour of the covert behind. When this turbidity 
is absent the colours are brighter, hence the fierce blue 
on bright sunshiny days with easterly winds. This 
matter of turbidity must not be forgotten in portrait 
work; it is this which helps to give relief, hence the 
absurdity of all photographers' devices, the object of which 
is to minimize this turbidity. In addition to these is the 
ever-changing effect of atmosphere on colour, that subtle 
medium with which the enchantress Nature produces 
ever-changing effects, and its chief effect on colour is to 
lower it in brightness. Atmosphere greys all tilings, hence 
on a misty day all the colours are greyed we have, in 
fact, a " grey day." 

Another point which must not be forgotten is that with 
bright illumination bright objects become more like the 
brightest, and with feeble illumination dark objects be- 
come more like the darkest. This is a very important 
matter, for it means that in bright sunshine the lightest 
greys are lost in white, whilst in dull weather the darkest 
greys are lost in black, hence the falsity of having deep 
blacks in brightly-lighted landscapes, and as has been 
shown, these are untrue, and the result of ignorance and 
of faulty manipulation. As Helmholtz has it, " The dif- 
ference of brightness and not absolute brightness; and 
that the differences in them in this latter respect can be 
shown without perceptible incongruity if only their 
graduations are imitated with expression." 


Single Image. 

The remarks already made would apply equally well to " a 
man if he were a one-eyed animal, but we find there are 
other considerations to take into account since man is 
two-eyed. Now the phenomena of binocular vision cannot 
be treated of with such accuracy as the physical and 
physiological facts already discussed. In this subject w<* 

1 1 2 Naturalistic Photography. 

shall follow Le Conte. It is obvious there is a commoi 
binocular field of view for the two eyes. Now Dr. L( 
Conte shows us that we see all objects double, excep 
under certain conditions. When we look directly at any 
thing, then we see it clearly, but all things nearer t< 
us than the object looked at and beyond it, are seer 
double, or blurred and indistinct. This is the case in life 
as can be proved. 

He goes on to tell us that we see things singly wher 
the two images of that thing are projected outward t( 
the same spot in space, and are therefore superirnposec 
and coincide. Objects are seen single when theii 
retinal images fall on corresponding points that is 
objects lying in a horizontal circle passing through th( 
point of sight and the central spots are seen single. No"fl 
" all objects at the same or nearly the same distance, bui 
a little to the right or left, or above or below, are alsc 
either seen single, or else the doubling, if any, is usuallj 
imperceptible." This surface of single vision is called the 

There are, then, two adjustments, the focal and th< 
axial, the one an adjustment for distant vision, the ofchei 
for single vision, and connected with these is the adjust' 
ment of the pupil, which contracts and expands, not onlj 
to light, but also to distance and nearness of the object 
Therefore, three adjustments take place when we look ai 
anything. Connected with these laws are the laws o 
direction and corresponding points. Thus we see oui 
perfect image can only exist in one place at once, thai 
all between the eye and the object and beyond the objed 
is indistinct, and that the further off an object is the mon 
luminous does it appear. Two objects, too, may be seer 
as one. 


Depth, Size, and Solidify. 

Perspec- Tn e next question is, " To what is due the appearance 
of solidity and depth?"' 

Depth, or relative distance, is judged of by a combina 
tion of four kinds of perspective. 

Phenomena of Sight, &c. 113 

1. 'Focal or monocular perspective. Objects at the point 
of sight are sharp, but all objects beyond or within this 
distance are dim. Distance is judged partly by the act 
of focussing the eye by acting, as we have said, on the lens. 
As this power only acts within twenty feet, it is evident 
that things can only be in focus in one plane. 

2. Mathematical Perspective. Objects become smaller 
in appearance and nearer together as they recede. This 
is another aid to the judging of distance. The true ren- 
dering of this perspective in photography depends on the 
correct use of the lens, as will be explained. 

3. Aerial Perspective is the perspective due to the 
scattering of light by aerial turbidity, for the atmosphere 
always contains floating particles of matter. As the objects 
recede this curtain of turbidity becomes thicker and the 
distant objects grow dimmer and bluer. This is another 
aid to the judging of distance, but any one not accus- 
tomed to count on this effect may easily misjudge, as we 
have done before now to our cost in Switzerland, where a 
peak miles away has, at times, seemed to be in the next 

4. Binocular Perspective is due to the convergence 
of the optic axes and formation of a single image. Le 
Conte says, " The perspective of depth or relative distance, 
whether in a single object or in a scene, is the result of 
the successive combinations of the different parts of the 
two dissimilar images of the object on the scene." Bino- 
cular perspective, too, gathers together the imperfect 
retinal impressions when the eye sweeps over the field of 
view. This only acts within a few hundred yards. 

Thus, then, in taking a photograph we must remember 
that theoretically speaking, up to twenty feet the picture 
can be made sharper all over than beyond that distance ; 
for the eye has all these perspectives acting within that 

By size we estimate distance. 

Solidity is judged by binocular vision and lighting. Solidity. 

When to all these difficulties are added those dependent 
on the subtleties of light reflected into shadow, and the 
thousand-and-one changes of colour due to the numerous 

ii4 Naturalistic Photography. 

shadows cast by objects in nature, we get a complexity 
which forces upon us how impossible it is for man to copy 
nature. A "mere transcript of nature/' which is so 
glibly talked of, is, humanly speaking, an impossibility. 
No man ever painted a " mere transcript " of nature, or 
a truthful copy, any more than a man can make plants or 
animals in a laboratory ; but he can, by a picture, give a 
truthful impression of nature. 

On these data and within these limits, then, must we 
work, and here we append a few general principles 
deduced from these data, which must guide us in our work. 
We have followed them ourselves, and they form the 
scientific part of our creed of " Naturalistic Photography." 
We have said little upon the drawing of photographic 
lenses, as that is discussed in another chapter ; but 
of course Naturalistic Photography claims as of vital 
importance that lenses be used so as to give the drawing of 
objects as they are seen by the eye in other words, as 
they would be drawn by a good draughtsman. 


Art We have shown why the human eye does not see nature 

Principles. exac ^ly as she is, but sees in stead a number of signs which 
represent nature, signs which the eye grows accustomed to, 
and which from habit we call nature herself. We shall now 
discuss the relation of pictorial art to nature, and shall 
show the fallacy of calling the most scientifically perfect 
images obtained with photographic lenses artistically true. 
They are not correct, as we have shown, and shall again 
show, but what is artistically true is really what we have all 
along advocated; that is that the photographer must so use 
his technique as to render a true impression of the scene. 
The great heresy of ' sharpness ' has lived so long in 
photographic circles because firstly the art has been 
practised by scientists, and secondly by unphiloso- 
phical scientists, for all through the lens has been con- 
sidered purely from the physical point of view, the far 
more important physiological and psychological stand- 
points being entirely ignored, so that but one-third of the 
truth has been hitherto stated. 

Phenomena of Sight > &c. 1 1 5 

To begin with, it must be remembered that a picture is a ; Y nat a . 
representation on a plane surface of limited area of certain pic 
physical facts in the world around us, for abstract ideas 
cannot be expressed by painting. In all the works in the 
world the painter, if he has tried to express the unseen 
or the supernatural, has expressed the unnatural. If he 
paints a dragon, you find it is a distorted picture of some 
animal already existing ; if he paints a deity, it is but a. 
kind of man after all. No brain can conjure up and set down 
on paper a monster such as has never existed, or in which 
there are no parts homologous with some parts of a living 
or fossil creature. We defy any man to draw a devil, for 
example, that is totally unlike anything in existence. All 
so-called imaginative works fall then within the category 
of the real, for they are in certain parts real because they 
are all based on realities, even though they may be 
utterly false to the appearance of reality. By this we mean 
that an ideal dragon may be based on existing animals ; 
his form may be a mixture of a Cobra, Saurian, and a 
reptile, as is often the case ; so far it may be real, but 
then the way in which it is painted may be utterly false, 
for the natural effect of light and atmosphere on the 
dragon may and probably will be ignored, for there is no 
such animal to study from. The modern pre-Raphaelites 
are good examples of painters who painted in this way; 
they painted details, they imitated the local colour and 
texture of objects, but for all that their pictures are as 
false as false can be, for they neglected those subtleties 
of light and colour and atmosphere which pervade all 
nature, and which are as important as form. Children 
and savages make this same error, they imitate the local 
colour, not the true colour as modified by light, adjacent 
colour, and atmosphere. But what the most advanced 
thinkers of art in all ages have sought for is the ren- 
dering of the true impression of nature. 

Proceed we now to discuss the component parts of this 

When we open our eyes in the morning the first thing we Tone and 
see is light, the result of those all-pervading vibrations of 
ether. The effects of light on all the objects of nature and on 

i 2 

1 1 6 Naturalistic Photography. 

sight have been dealt with in the beginning of this chapter, 
it only remains, therefore, to deduce our limits from these 
facts. In the first place, from what has been said in that 
section it is evident we cannot compete with painting, for 
we are unable to pitch our pictures in so high a key as the 
painter doe?, and how limited is his scale has been shown, 
but by the aid of pigments he can go higher than we can. 
It has been shown, too, that it is impossible to have the 
values correct throughout a picture, for that would make 
the picture too black and untrue in many parts. This fact 
shows how wrong are those photographers who maintain 
that every photograph should have a patch of pure white 
and a patch of pure black, and that all the lighting should 
be nicely gradated between these two extremes. This 
idea arose, no doubt, from comparing photography with 
other incomplete methods of translation, such as line- 

The real point is that the darks of the picture shall be 
in true relation, and the high lights must take care of 
themselves. By this means a truer tone is obtained 
throughout. Now to have these tones in true relation it 
is of course implied that the local colours must be truly 
rendered, yellow must not come out black, or blue as white, 
therefore it is evident that colour-corrected plates are 
necessary. But such plates are useless when the quantity 
of silver in the film is little, for the subtleties of delicate 
tonality are lost, which are not compensated for by gain in 
local colour, and this is a point the makers of orthochro- 
matic plates must take into consideration. It will be seen 
now why photographs on uncorrected plates (even when the 
greatest care and knowledge in using them is exercised) 
are not, as a rule, perfectly successful, and why the ordinary 
silver printing-paper is undesirable, for it exaggerates the 
darkness of the shadows, a fatal error. False tonality de- 
stroys the sense of atmosphere, in fact, for the true render- 
ing of atmosphere, a photograph must be relatively true in 
tone ; in other words the relative tones, in shadow and half 
shadow, must be true. If a picture is of a bright, sunlit 
subject, brilliancy is of course a necessary quality, and by 
brilliancy is not meant that " sparkle" which so delights 

Phenomena of Sight > &c. 1 1 7 

the craftsman. Of course the start of tone is naturally 
made from less deep shadows, when the picture is brightly 
lighted, for the black itself reflects light, and all the 
shadows are filled with reflected light. It will be seen, 
therefore, that it is of paramount importance that the 
shadows shall not be too black, that in them shall be 
light as there always is in nature more of course in bright 
pictures, less in low-toned pictures that therefore the 
rule of " detail in the shadows " is in a way a good rough- 
and-ready photographic rale. Yet photographers often 
stop down their lens aod cut off the light, at the same 
time sharpening the shadows and darkening them, and 
throwing the picture out of tone. It cannot be too 
strongly insisted upon that " strength " in a photograph is 
not to be judged by its so-called ""pluck" or "sparkle," 
but by its subtlety of tone, its truthful relative values 
in shadow and middle shadow, and its true textures. 
Photographers have been advised by mistaken craftsmen 
to spot out the " dotty high lights " of an ill-chosen or 
badly-rendered subject to give it t( breadth." Such a 
proceeding of course only increases the falsity of the 
picture, for the high lights, as we have shown, are never 
high enough in any picture, and if a man is so unwise 
as to take a picture with " spotty lights," he is only 
increasing his display of ignorance by lowering the high 
lights, which are already not high enough. This does 
not of course apply to the case where a single spot of 
objectionable white fixes the eye and destroys harmony, 
but to the general habit of lowering the high lights in a 
( ' spotty " photograph. Spotty pictures in art as well as 
in nature are abominations to a trained eye, and it is for 
that very reason that such subjects are more common 
among photographers who are untrained in art matters 
than in the works of even third-rate painters. The effect 
of the brightest sunlight in nature, for reasons explained, 
is to lessen contrast, the effect of a sharply- focussed, 
stopped-down photograph is to increase contrast in 
the subject and thus falsify the impression. Aa the 
tendency of " atmosphere " is to grey all the colours 
in nature more or less, and of a mist to render all things 

1 1 8 Naturalistic Photography. 

grey, it follows that " atmosphere " in all cases helps to 
give breadth by lessening contrast, as ifc also helps to 
determine the distance of objects. As shown in the 
previous- chapter, this aerial " turbidity," by which is 
meant atmosphere, takes off from the sharpness of out- 
line and detail of the image, and the farther off the object 
is, the thicker being the intervening layer of atmosphere, 
the greater is the turbidity cceteris paribus, therefore 
from this fact alone objects in different planes are not and 
should not be represented equally sharp and well-defined. 
This is most important to seize as the prevalent idea 
among photographers seems to be that all the objects in 
all the planes should be sharp at once, an idea which no 
artist could or ever did entertain, and which nature at 
once proves to be untenable. The atmosphere in the 
main rules the general appearance of things, for if this 
turbidity be little, objects look close together, and under 
certain other conditions are poor in quality. 

Drawing In addition to tone and atmosphere, the diminished 
Li^htin drawing of objects as they recede from us (mathematical 
perspective) helps to give an idea of distance, but by 
choosing a suitable lens, which does our drawing correctly, 
we need not regard this matter of drawing, A minor aid 
to rendering depth is the illumination of the object, a 
lateral illumination giving the greatest idea of relief, 
but the photographer should be guided by no so-called 
" schemes of lighting," because, for more important rea- 
sons, it maybe advisable to choose a subject lighted directly 
by the sun, or silhouetted against the sun. All depends 
on what is desired to be expressed. For example, an artist 
may wish to express the sentiment and poetry of a sun- 
set behind a row of trees. Is he to consider the minor 
matter that there will be little relief, and it is not a good 
" scheme of lighting " ? No, certainly not, otherwise he 
must forgo the subject. Nature ignores all such laws. 
The only law is that the lighting must give a relatively true 
translation of the subject expressed, and that a landscape 
must not be lighted by two or more suns. In portrait 
work, even, it must be remembered that the aerial lighting 
must stand out against the background, for in all rooms 

rhenomena of Sight, &c. 1 1 9 

there is a certain amount of turbidity between us and 
distant object?. 

The reason we prefer pictures which are not too bright Ontlielm- 
lies in the fact that the eye cannot look long at very bright pression. 
paintings without tiring. As a physical fact, too, the most 
delicate modelling and tonality is to be obtained in a 
medium light. From what has been previously said, it will 
now be understood that a picture should not be quite 
sharply focussed in any part, for then it becomes false; 
it should be made just as sharp as the eye sees it and no 
sharper, for it must be remembered the eye does not see 
things as sharply as the photographic lens, for the eye has 
the faults due to dispersion, spherical aberration, astig- 
matism, aerial turbidity, blind spot, and beyond twenty 
feet it does not adjust perfectly for the different planes. 
All these slight imperfections make the eye's visions more 
imperfect than that of the optician's lens, even when 
objects in one plane only are sharply focussed, therefore, 
except in very rare cases, which will be touched upon 
elsewhere, the chief point of interest should be slightly 
very slightly out of focus, while all things, out of the 
plane of the principal object, it is perfectly obvious, 
i' what has been said, should also be slightly out 
of focus, not to the extent of producing destruction of 
structure or fuzziness, but sufficiently to keep them 
back and in place. For, as we have been told, "to 
look at anything means to place the eye in such a position 
that the image of the object falls on the small region 
of perfectly clear vision, . . . and .' . . whatever we 
want to see, we look at, and see it accurately ; what we 
do not look at, we do not, as a rule, care for at the 
moment, and so do not notice how imperfectly we see it." 
Such is the case, as has been shown, for when we fix 
our sight on the principal object or motif of a picture, 
binocular vision represents clearly by direct vision only 
the parts of the picture delineated on the points of sight. 
The rule in focussing, therefore, should be, focus for the R u i e f or 
principal object of the picture, but all else must not be focussing. 
eharp; and even thatprincipal object must not be as perfectly 
sharp as the optical lens will make it. It will be said, but in 

I2O Naturalistic Photography. 

nature the eye wanders up and down the landscape, and 
so gathers up the impressions, and all the landscape in turn 
appears sharp. But a picture is not " all the landscape/' it 
should be seen at a certain distance the focal length of 
the lens used, as a rule, and the observer, to look at it 
thoughtfully, if it be a picture, will settle on a principal 
object, and dwell upon it, and when he tires of this, he 
will want to gather up suggestions of the rest of the picture. 
If it be a commonplace photograph taken with a wide-angle 
lens, say, of a stretch, of scenery of equal value, as are 
most photographic landscapes, of course the eye will have 
nothing to settle thoughtfully upon, and will wander 
about, and finally go away dissatisfied. But such a 
photograph is no work of art, and not worthy of dis- 
cussion here. Hence it is obvious that panoramic effects 
are not suitable for art, and the angle of view included in 
a picture should never be large. It might be argued 
Pseudo- from this, that Pseudo-Impressionists who paint the horse's 
Impres- head and top of a hansom cab are correct, since the eye can 
sionists. only see clearly a very small portion of the field of view at 
once. We assert, no, for if we look in a casual way at a 
hansom cab in the streets, we only see directly the 
head of the horse and the top of the cab, yet, indirectly, 
that is, in the retinal circle around the fovea centralis 
we have far more suggestion and feeling of horse's legs 
than the eccentricities of the Pseudo-Impressionist school 
give us, for in that part of the retinal field indirect 
vision aids us. The field of indirect vision must be sug- 
gested in a picture, but subordinated. But we shall go 
into this matter later on, here we only wish to establish 
our principles on a scientific basis. Afterwards, in 
treating of art questions, we shall simply give our advice, 
presuming the student has already studied the scientific 
data on which that advice is based. All good art has 
sir T - its scientific basis. Sir Thomas Lawrence said, (< Painting 
L<3e * is a science, and should be pursued as an inquiry into the 
laws of nature. Why, then, may not landscape painting 
be considered as a branch of natural philosophy, of 
which pictures are but experiments ? " 
Fuzziness. Some writers who have never taken the trouble to 

Phenomena of Sight, &c. 1 2 1 

understand even these points, have held that we admitted 
fuzziness in photography. Such persons are labouring 
under a great misconception ; we have nothing whatever 
to do with any " fuzzy school." Fuzziness, to us, means 
destruction of structure. We do advocate broad suggestions 
of organic structure, which is a very different thing from 
destruction, although, there may at times be occasions 
in which patches of " fuzziness" will help the picture, yet 
these are rare indeed, and it would be very difficult for 
any one to show us many such patches in our published 
plates. We have, then nothing to do with " fuzziness/ 3 
unless by the term is meant that broad and ample 
generalization of detail, so necessary to artistic work. We 
would remind these writers that it is always fairer to read 
an author's writings than to read the stupid con- 
structions put upon them by untrained persons. 


" Artists are supposed to pass their lives in earnest endeavour to 
express through the medium of paint or pencil, thoughts, feelings, or 
impressions which they cannot help expressing, and which cannot 
possibly be expressed by any other means. They make use of 
material means in order to arrive at this end. They tell their story 
the story of a day, an impression of a character, a recollection of a 
moment, or- whatever, more or less clearly or well, as they are more 
or less capable of doing. They expose their work to the public, not 
for the sake of praise, but with a feeling and a hope that some human 
being may see in it the feeling that has passed through their own 
mind in their poor and necessarily crippled statement. The endea- 
vour is honest and earnest, if almost always with a result weakened by 
over-conscientiousness or endeavour to be understood. . . .Your work 
is exhibited not with the intention of injuring any of the human race. 
It is a dumb, noiseless, silent story, told, as best it may be, by the 
author to those whom it may concern. And it does tell its story, not 
to everybody, but to somebody." 





THE camera as used to-day is a modified form of the The 
Camera Obscura adapted to the special end of taking cam 
photographs. It is essentially nothing but a light-tight 
box, to one end of which a lens can be adjusted, and to 
the other end of which the slide containing the sensitive 
plate can be applied and exposed, so that it receives no 
light, save that passing through the lens. There are 
many patterns and many minor differences in the con- Choice of 
struction of these boxes, some few of real value, but the camera - 
majority the work of ingenious and speculating manufac- 
turers, who hope by some novelty to increase the sale of 
their new patents. In all apparatus the student should 
choose the simplest and strongest, for in artistic work 
lightness per se is no object, nay, it may be harmful, 
as leadiog to over-production. In fact nothing should 
stand in the way of getting the best results, and though 
many of the cameras on the market are light and fitted 
with numerous devices which are said to simplify opera- 
tions and help the worker, yet such is not really the case, 
and these thousand-and-one aids to work are apt to 
become deranged, and finally to embarrass the worker at 
some critical moment. 

In choosing a camera, then, for landscape work, choose 
a square one, with a reversing frame, a double swing- 
back, and good leather bellows. Let the flange of the lens 
be fitted to a square front which can be easily removed and 
replaced, and let there be a rising front. It is advisable 
to have the camera brass-bound for the sake of its pre- 
servation, and if for use in tropical climates the bellows 


Naturalistic Photography. 

tions in 
a camera 

should be made of Russian leather, as the oil of birch with 
which the leather is cured is most distasteful to insects. 
In ordering a camera there are a few points which 
' experience has led us to consider essential to comfort. 
One is that the part of the base-board of the camera 
which rests on the tripod head should be strengthened 
or made of much stouter material than is usually used. 
Another is that the thumb-screw should be of much larger 
diameter than is usually the case, and this should be 
borne in mind, even in the making of the smaller cameras, 
for on a windy day when the camera has a heavy lens on 
one end and a loaded double dark slide on the other, the 
vibration is often ruinous to the picture during exposure, 
while sudden gusts of wind may even crack the wood 
round the screw hole. It seems to us a thumb-screw 
at least half an inch in diameter should be used, unless 
the camera be made to fit into the tripod head, a method 
often adopted of recent years, and of course the best way 
of all. On more than one occasion we have nearly lost 
the camera altogether in the water when trying to screw 
it to the tripod when working from a boat on a tide- 
way, but by having a part of the base-board made to fit 
into a wooden tripod head, this at times most difficult 
operation is rendered easy and certain. 

The camera should always extend and close by means 
of a tail-screw, those opening by means of a rack and 
pinion are much more liable to get out of order. Of 
course this remark is not applicable to the smallest-sized 
cameras. Two small spirit-levels sunk into the tail-piece 
of the camera are invaluable ; one will do if made of 
the 'right shape. In ordering a camera the two vital 
points to be considered are the size including the length 
of the bellows. The size of plate you intend working with 
determines the size of the camera. We have worked with 
all sized cameras, from quarter-plate up to one taking 
twenty-four by twenty-two inch plates, and it is only after 
long experience and much consideration that we venture to 
offer an opinion on the size to be chosen. For ordinary 
work, then, we recommend the half-plate size as the mini- 
mum, and the ten by eight inch size as the maximum. 

The Camera and Tripod. 1 2 7 

Perhaps a whole-plate camera (8J x 6J inches) is on the 
whole as useful as any. The strength required to do a 
day's work with a twelve by ten inch camera is beyond 
any but a strong man. It is assumed, of course, that 
the pictures of the sizes cited are for albums, port- 
folios, or book illustrations. It must be remembered, 
however, that the size of a picture has nothing to 
do with its artistic value, an artistic quarter -plate 
picture is worth a hundred commonplace pictures forty 
by thirty inches in size. For producing large pictures for 
the wall, however, we consider the camera should be 
between fifteen by twelve inches and twenty-four by 
twenty-two inches ; we cannot imagine anything larger 
than twenty-four by twenty-two inches for out-door 
work, and our memory goes back to a marsh road in 
Norfolk where we and two peasants had all we could do to 
carry a twenty-four by twenty-two inch camera when set 
up, from one marsh to another. 

The student will of course remember that his camera Square 
must be square in order to have a reversing frame fitted, 
but that makes no difference to the dark slides. Having 
then fixed on the size of his camera, a question re- 
quiring the greatest thought, he must next tell the 
maker the length of bellows he requires, which is Length, 
usually measured from front to back when the camera 
is racked out to its full length. As we recommend the 
use of long-focus lenses only, as will be seen in the 
chapter on lenses, and as no definite law can be laid down 
for this length, it is advisable to order a camera four or 
five inches longer than the focal length of the lens which 
is advertised to cover the next larger-sized plate to that 
which your dark slide holds. 

And now for a caution against a fallacy still current Size of 
in photographic circles, which is that one size of plate is plate- 
more suitable for pictorial purposes than another. Let 
no such nonsense influence you, the size of the plate has 
nothing whatever to do with success or beauty. Every 
composition will demand its own particular size and 
shape, and though you work with a ten by eight inch 
camera or any other size, you will find you will often take 

128 Naturalistic Photography. 

a nine by four inch or a ten by three inch plate or a dozen 
other sizes and cut off all the rest. All fanciful rules 
for fixing on the size of a plate for pictorial reasons can- 
not be too strongly condemned. Such things must be 
left to the individuality of each artist, and every picture- 
gallery in Europe gives the lie to all rules for a choice of 
size. The artist, must of course, suit his canvas or plate 
to his subject, not his subject to his canvas or plate. 
Studio For studio, or indoor work, the camera may of course 

cameras, ^e heavier for obvious reasons, and a different form of 
support is necessary, the one usually adopted being very 
convenient for lowering or raising the lens so that the 
best point of sight is obtained according to the position 
of the model. It seems to us, however, that these 
studio cameras and stands are made a great deal too 
heavy and cumbersome. For this kind of work a very 
necessary part of the apparatus is a hood of some dark 
material fixed on to the front of the camera and extending 
above and beyond the lens, in order to obviate the effect 
of the numerous reflections always present' in a glass 
studio. Out of doors this is only necessary when the sun 
is shining into the lens ; otherwise it is never needed, for 
we have tried it, and have proved that its use has in no 
way improved either the truth or the artistic quality of 
the negative. In cases where the sun shines into the lens 
a hat, a piece of cardboard, a folded newspaper, or any- 
thing of the kind, will answer the purpose equally well. 
Tripod The tripod head should be preferably of tough wood 

head. covered with felt. A metal tripod head is apt to en- 
danger the woodwork of the camera, even when covered 
Tripods, with leather. The legs should be simple and firm, the 
best we know of being made of two pieces of ash or oak 
hinged at the bottom, the points shod with iron, and the 
legs being stiffened, when in position by a bar of iron 
which is secured by a hinge. Every one should have two 
pairs of legs at least ; one pair, so that when the camera 
is set up the lens may be on a level with the eye of a man 
of average height, and one pair shorter, so that the lens 
is only three feet from the ground. In addition to these 
we always have handy three tough poles eight feet long 

The Camera and Tripod. 129 

and about the diameter of a broomstick ; these are shod 
with iron heels, and have notches cut at the unshod ends. 
These are most useful to lash to the long legs when using 
them in water-ways. It is as well to have six double- Donble- 
backs, for by filling them all at one operation the student backs, 
empties a box of plates, and so avoids a chance of mixing 
exposed and unexposed plates. The most convenient 
method of carrying the plates in all cases up to and in- 
cluding the ten by eight size, is to have a bag made which Bags, 
will take the camera, three double-backs and the focussing 
cloth, and a separate bag for the other three double-backs 
which can be left or taken out at pleasure. 

A very useful piece of apparatus is a clamp which can Clamp, 
be screwed on anywhere, but especially to a boat's gun- 
wale, the tanrail of a steamer, a fence, and numerous 
other places whence good pictures can often be secured. 
Such a clamp can be purchased at most of the dealers' 

Having decided on these matters, we will suppose the Setting up 

novice is now provided with camera and tripod. Now for the 

f T j -i i j.- T J.J.- A.I camera. 

a few details about starting. In setting up the camera on 

its tripod) one leg should be placed either between the 
photographer's legs or exactly opposite to him, he will 
then find he can command the camera easily and alter its 
position with a touch. If, on the contrary, the legs are 
put up by chance, he will soon find his lens playing all 
sorts of gymnastic tricks, one moment looking up aR 
if threatening the stars, the next studying with the 
deepest interest the ground at its loot. 

The manipulation of the rising front is a power need- Rising 
ing considerable study, for, by moving it, you can regu- r 
late the amount of foreground you wish to include in your 
picture. The limit of rise of the front is determined by 
the manufacturer, and the limit beyond which the student 
must not go is determined by the covering power of 
the lens he is using, for he will remember that every 
lens only covers a certain circle, the area of the circle 
depending on the construction of the lens. The usual 
method of describing the covering power of a lens is 
to give the measurements of the greatest parallelogram 

1 30 Naturalistic Photography. 

that can be inscribed in this circle. It will be easily seen 
that if the lens we use only just covers the plate, that when 
the front is raised, the lower corners will have no image 
exposed on them, and the higher the lens is carried, the 
more of the lower part of the picture will be cut off. As 
the image is upside down, the blank corners will appear in 
the sky of the negative. It is then obvious that if the 
covering capacity of the lens is greater than needed for 
the plate used, the rising front may be used to a much 
greater extent than if you only use a lens advertised to 
cover the plate you are exposing. It must always be 
remembered that if the optical axis of the lens be raised 
above the centre of the plate the illumination may be 

Swing. The effect of the horizontal and vertical swing-back 

is identical, as is obvious if the camera be placed on its 
side, for the horizontal swing becomes vertical, and vice 
versa. If the camera be set up plumb, the effect of 
using the vertical swing-back to its extreme limits 
(which are determined by the mechanical construction 
of the camera) is to lengthen objects in the direction of 
their obliquity and to sharpen them. What does this mean 
from an art point of view ? It means that as a rule it 
throws the whole picture out of drawing, the relative posi- 
tions of the planes are altered, the relative definition in the 
planes is altered and therefore the relative values, and 
therefore as a rule the picture, is artistically injured. 
This rule-of-thumb use of the swing-back arose, no 
doubt, from the practice of those craftsmen, untrained in 
art, whose aim was the production of " sharp " pictures. 
The only legitimate extensive use of the swing-back is 
when the camera is tilted before an architectural subject, 
when it is quite correct to have the ground-glass plumb, 
although for our part we deem the tilting of the camera 
to be undesirable. The swing-backs can, however, be 
used, with the greatest caution, in artistic work, and 
their value can scarcely be overrated, but it requires 
great knowledge to use them appropriately. The subtle 
changes in the drawing and composition of a picture 
which can be obtained by an intelligent use of the two 

The Camera and Tripod. 1 3 1 

swing-backs, make them, to those who know how to use 
them, most valuable tools. But if the beginner will 
take our advice, he will keep his ground-glass plumb, 
and his horizontal swing-back square, and never venture 
to alter either until he has thoroughly mastered his 
technique, and has some insight into the principles of art. 
The use of these swing-backs seems so easy, as of 
course it is, when " sharpness" is all the desideratum 
and embodiment of the operator's knowledge of art, but 
in reality none but artists know their real value. By 
their means, the impression of the whole scene can often 
be more truly rendered, and things can be subdued and 
kept back in the most wonderful manner ; and since we 
wish to get a true impression of the scene we are inte- 
rested in, not a realistic wealth of detail, it can be easily 
understood how invaluable are the swing-backs when 

used cautiously. Muvbridere's scalloping horses are in 

n c 1 & . & i , f ,1 sum and 

all of their movements true, but many of these f act< 

are never seen by the eye, so quick are they. On 
the other hand, the student, if he goes to the British 
Museum, can see in the Parthenon Frieze that the 
sculptors in some cases carved the legs of the farthest off 
of three horses in higher relief than those of the nearer 
horses, but if he goes off a few paces and views the carving 
in its entirety, he will see the true impression is gained ; 
the nearest legs look the farthest off, and so the work is 
true in impression, though not true in absolute fact. 
And though the use of the swing-back makes the draw- 
ing a little false, yet if the lens we shall describe here- 
after be used, the falsity is so very slight as to be 
hardly noticeable, while it is far more correct than any 
human hand guided alone by a human eye can render 
it. With art as with science, nothing is absolutely cor- 
rect, the personal equation and errors of experiment 
must be allowed for, but the results are true enough for 
working purposes. 

By perforating a thin metal plate with a minute hole, Pin-hole 
large enough only to admit a pin's point, and fitting it to 
the front of the camera in place of the lens, an image 
will be thrown on the focussing screen, as the piece of 

K 2 

132 Naturalistic Photography. 

ground glass at the opposite end of the camera is called. 
If the image be received on to a sensitized plate, it will 
be impressed on the plate, and can be developed in the 
ordinary way. Were it not for the great length of time 
required for exposure, it would be a great question 
whether any lens at all need be used in photography, 
but since the exposures required to produce pictures 
without lenses vary roughly from one to thirty minutes, 
this method cannot be seriously considered here, for, 
as we shall show, within certain limits, the quicker 
the exposure the better ; nevertheless, the drawing of 
pictures taken in such way would obviously be correct. 
In cases where the length of exposure is immaterial, 
this method would be a worthy field for experiment. 

Accidents The student must be careful to see that the inside of 
the camera is a dead black, and that it keeps so. At 
times the camera may leak or get out of register, that 
is, the plate does not exactly take the place of the 
ground glass, in which case he should at once send it to 
the maker. Should the student wish at aj*y time to 

Test for test the register of his camera, he has only to pin up a 

register, printed card and focus it as sharply as possible, using a 
magnifying glass, if one is at hand. Then load the 
dark-slide with a plate of ground-glass, and after slid- 
ing it into position, open the slide (if a double-back) 
when the image will be seen on the ground-glass plate, 
and its sharpness can be noted. If perfectly sharp, the 
camera is in register. 

Hand A good form of small camera to be carried in the hand 

is a great desideratum for artistic studies. Exquisite 
studies of figures, birds, and all sorts of animal life 
could be made with such a contrivance, studies admir- 
ably suitable for tail-pieces or illustrations to go in with 
the text. That there are dozens of patterns of hand 
cameras commonly called " detective cameras," we are 
well aware, and we have tried some of the best, but we 
have found none satisfactory for artistic purposes, and 
can therefore recommend none. We may here remark 
that the name " detective camera " is, in our opinion, 
undesirable, photographers ought not to have it even sug- 


The Camera and Tripod. 133 

gested to them that they are doing mean, spying work 
with their cameras, whereas the term <( hand camera " 
meets every requirement. Of course the smaller cameras 
advertised to be worn on the person are nothing but toys. 
The camera we should like to see introduced would be 
a very light collapsible camera, which could be easily 
carried in the pocket when not in use. It should be 
able to take pictures not larger than four and a half by 
three and a half inches, and should be fitted with the 
Eastman spools, so that any number of exposures could 
be made. The lens should be Dallmeyer's long focus 
rectilinear landscape lens, fitted with a good shutter. 
There should be a light view meter attached to the top. 
There is no necessity for a ground-glass screen, for on 
the tail-board could be registered various distances, at 
which the film is in focus ; and since for artistic purposes 
most of the studies would be of objects near at hand, this 
arrangement would be effectual. 

Many hand cameras are fitted with a camera obscura. View 
The handiest view finder for quick exposure work is to finder - 
fit a double convex lens of the same focal length as the 
working lens to the front of the camera, and turn 
up the focussing screen at right angles to the plane of 
the top of the camera, when it may be secured by a 
small brass catch fitted for the purpose. When the 
focussing cloth is thrown over the lens and screen a 
temporary double camera is made, and the moving objects 
can be watched on the ground glass. With experience 
it is possible to judge by simply looking over the top of 
the camera. 

1 34 Naturalistic Photography. 



Optics. WE do not intend to incorporate in this chapter 
elementary optics, as the subject is well known to most 
educated men, but in case any reader should know no- 
thing of light and optics, we recommend him to get 
Ganot's Granot's Physics, and thoroughly master at least the 
Physics. p aT . a g ra ph s o f Book VII., on " Light/' that we enume- 
rate below. 1 This may seem a little formidable, but our 
reader will find that with a very simple knowledge of 
mathematics he can easily understand all the sections 
marked, and it is our opinion that light and chemistry 
should be studied directly from systematic text- books 
that treat of those subjects. In the Appendix we shall 
refer to some additional books which we consider advis- 
able for the student to read, but for the present we 
strongly recommend him to thoroughly master the parts 
of Ganot that we have cited, and to avoid all other 
desultory reading until he has doue so. 

Far too much time has been given, and far too much im- 
portance has been hitherto attached, to the subject of optics 
in connection with photography. Much time and expense 
would have been saved had the pioneers of photography 

1 Namely, paragraphs 499, 500, 501,502, 503, 504, 506, 508 the 
Laws of the Intensity of Light, 509 Photometers, Rumford's and 
Bunsen's, 510, 511 -first proof only, 512, 513, 514, 518, 519, 524, 
525, 528, 533, 536, 537, 538, 539, 540, 542, 543, 544, 551, 552, 554, 
555, 556, 558, 564, 565, 566, 567, 568, 569, 570, 571, 572, 573, 574, 
575, 576, 579, 580, 581, 582, 583, 584, 602, 604, 612, 615, 616, 617, 
618, 619, 620, 62 L, 625, 626, 627, 628, 629, 631, 632, 634, 635, 636, 
637, 639, 640, 641, 645, 646, 650, 652, 655, 656, 659, 661, and 664. 

Lenses. 135 

had good art educations as well as the elementary 
knowledge of optics and chemistry which many of them 
possessed, for without art training the practice of photo- 
graphy came to be looked upon purely as a science, and 
the ideal work of the photographer was to produce an un- 
natural, inartistic and often unscientific, picture. It is, in- 
deed, a satire on photography, and a blot which can never 
be entirely removed, that at the very time the so-called 
scientific photographers were worrying opticians to death, 
and vying with each other in producing the greatest 
untruths, they were all the while shouting in the market- 
place that their object was to produce truthful works. At 
length, when the most doubly patented distorting lenses 
were made to meet their demands, they, with imperturb- 
able self-confidence, presented a sharp, untrue photograph, 
insisting upon its truth. " A truer picture/' said they, 
" than drawing ; " " truer than the eye sees," some said. 
In short their picture was absolutely perfect. When a lens 
giving a brilliant picture, with all the detail and shadows 
sharp, and the planes all equally sharp, was at last 
produced, the scientists were in excclsis. But, alas ! they 
proved themselves as unscientific as they were inartistic ! 
Had they but taken up their simplest form of lens and 
used it as a magnify ing-glass, they would have seen 
immediately that all was not right, and instead of 
clamouring for the artistic falsities of " depth of focus/' 
" wide-angle views," " sparkle/' and the other hydra- 
heads of vulgarity, they might have set to and made the 
lens which was required. It was but a simple thing 
that was required. 

The question then arises What is the best lens for 
artistic purposes ? That lens is Dallmeyer's new long- 
focus rectilinear land scape lens. This summer (1888) we landscape 
used one of these lenses and were delighted with it. lens - 

Why is this the best lens for our purpose ? is the Why this 
question that naturally arises. It is the best because ^ lfi 
being what is called a long-focus lens, it cannot be so 
ignorantly employed as can lenses of shorter focus, there 
is no appreciable marginal distortion, and with open 
aperture the outlines of the image are softly and roundly 

Naturalistic Photography. 

Best focal 
length to 

ment for 
finding a 
rule for 
the use of 







rendered, and in addition the relative values seem to us 
to be more truly rendered by it. 

This lens then being, as we think, the best for artistic 
work, the next question that arises is what focal length of 
lens must we use to get the best results. The student will 
be told ad nauseam that if he places his eye at the 
distance of the focal 'length of the lens from the 
photograph he is inspecting, all will be well. Such, 
however, is not always the case. He may prove it for him- 
self by taking a lens of short focus and photographing any 
suitable object placed too near to him, and he may then 
place his eye at the distance of the focal length, and if 
he be an artist, he will immediately detect that the 
drawing is false, and the distance is dwarfed and pushed 
together as compared with foreground objects, whilst 
in a true drawing the proportions must be true between 
the foreground objects and distant objects. This misuse 
of the lens is what leads to the production of so many 
photographs false in drawing, and it is evident that since 
many of these falsely drawn photographs have been and 
are a basis for many scientific purposes, the deductions 
based upon them will have to be reconsidered. 

The next question is, what proportion, as a rule, should 
the focal length of the lens bear to the base of the pic- 
ture to give approximately true perspective delineation ? 
This proportion should be as two to one, that is, the focal 
length of the lens should be as a rough working rule twice 
as long as the base of the picture. We arrived at the result 
by making a series of drawings on the ground glass of 
the camera, and comparing them with a perspective 
drawing made upon a glass plate. Opticians have arrived 
at the same conclusion, for we find this is the rough 
rule stated by Mr. Dallmeyer in his "Choice Lenses." 

The falsity of the statement that photographs are always 
true a statement that has been in vogue from the 
earliest photographic days is then apparent. It will 
now be obvious why some lenses make ponds of puddles, 
and otherwise falsify the landscape. This fact would have 
long ago been noticed had artists always seen the landscape 
from which the photograph had been taken. Another 

Lenses. 137 

thing which a wide-angle lens, if wrongly used, does, is, 
iu the case of a picture with clouds, to draw down and 
crowd together the clouds, and define them more sharply 
than the eye sees them, so that when the negative is 
printed they appear too strong in value, and the whole 
picture is thrown out of tone, and is therefore false and 
inartistic, even if the lens be correctly used ; this fault 
is generally present in pictures taken with these lenses. 

It will be seen from our remarks, therefore, that 
the only lens we recommend for artistic work is 
Dallmeyer's new rectilinear landscape lens. At least two 
of these should be obtained of different focal lengths, 
one of which is advertised to cover a plate a size larger 
than that used by the photographer, and the second to 
cover the same sized plate that he uses. In addition a 
rapid rectilinear lens as advertised to cover a plate of 
the same size as his camera, will be found very useful for 
quicker work. For special- purposes, for example in Lenses for 
photographing beetles, or fish, or flowers for scientific special 
manuals, the linest lenses procurable must be used, and P ' 
sharpness, brilliancy, &c., are vital qualities in such 
cases, for the work desired is diagrammatic and not 
artistic, but in these cases also the greatest care must 
be taken to use the lenses properly, so that the drawing 
is correctly rendered. Ignorant critics and enthusiastic 
partisans alike have claimed for photography, as its 
chief merit, " truthfulness. " As has been shown, a 
photograph may be very false indeed. 

Another chimera is that of " composite photography," Corapo- 
to which we shall again refer. When Mr. Galton tells us ? lfce ph " 
he uses an ordinary portrait lens for his work, and gives 
no other details, that is quite sufficient, in our opinion, 
to seriously impair the value of his " composites," even 
were there no other considerations. 

The only really artistic series of photographic portraits Portraits 
we have ever seen, namely, those by Mrs. Cameron, were take ^ with 
taken with the next best lens to that advocated, namely, rectilinear 
a rapid rectilinear lens, but even they would have been lens, 
improved by the use of the new lens. We have besides 
seen here and there really artistic portraits by others 


Naturalistic Photography. 



of lens. 

(but these were the result of chance, as no second picture 
was ever produced by the same worker), and they were 
taken by a rapid rectilinear lens. Mrs. Cameron, though 
no an artist, had knowledge enough to see that the portrait 
lenses of the day were undesirable for her work. And 
here it may be remarked that a great ignorance of optics 
is as harmful as wasting too much time upon its study. 
One industrial portrait photographer, who has very 
occasionally succeeded in producing- an artistic picture, 
prides himself, we are told, on not knowing what lens he 
uses. Such a man can never be an artist, for he cannot 
know whether his work be true or false. To appreciate 
falseness in drawing requires considerable training. An 
average judge of photography might discover gross dis- 
tortion of limbs, due to violent perspective ; but how 
many would notice the false drawing in a face which 
is taken with a portrait lens ? 

Supplied with his lenses, the student will find 
" stops," or diaphragms. The name, " stop," suggests 
its use. By making the light pass through a contracted 
hole, the weak marginal rays are cut off, and the image is 
therefore made sharper all over, spherical aberration is 
reduced, and the depth of focus is increased. But though 
diaphragms are used to correct an error, yet the ignorant 
use of them is as great a source of error. One of the 
causes of sharply defined and false heavy shadows in the 
much-vaunted " sharp photographs " is due to focussing 
sharply, and "stopping down," that is, to using a small 
diaphragm. This is the invariable practice of most photo- 

Some ingenious workers have suggested modifications 
in the construction of diaphragms, with a view to im- 
proving the picture ; one of these beingapaper diaphragm, 
made translucent with castor oil ; but we have not found 
any advantage in these novelties. It is, however, a legiti- 
mate field for experiment, and translucent diaphragms 
might be tried in indoor work and bright out-door effects. 

The student will often see in photographic papers that 

TT Tf 

a lens works at -- or 57;, or some other number. This 

o oZ 

Lenses. 139 

simply expresses the ratio between the working aper- 
ture and the equivalent fociis of the lens, and is 
obtained by dividing the equivalent focus by the work- 


ing aperture. then means the aperture is one-eighth 

of the focal length of the lens referred to. The rapidity 

of lenses are compared in this way by squaring the 

denominators of the fractions thus obtained; when the 

results will give the ratios of rapidity. By "depth of <<r)e P^ ot% 

focus " is roughly meant the sharp rendering of the c 

different planes of a landscape, or any object with more 

than one plane in one plane. Needless to say, this quality, 

greatly sought for in lenses by photographers, is a thing 

to be carefully avoided in artistic work, as we shall 

show later on. 

By a flare spot is meant a circular spot on the focussing Flare spot, 
screen, which receives more light than the surrounding 
field ; it is said to be caused by the diaphragms being 
wrongly placed. The same effect is produced when the 
sun shines into the lens, the light being then reflected 
from the brass tubing of the lens, and it is for that reason 
that the lens must be carefully shaded during exposure, 
when the sun is directly in front of the camera. 

The angle of view included by a lens is an important Angle of 
consideration,, and we shall refer to this later on ; here view< 
we shall only show how this angle may be determined 
when the student wishes to do so. The angle 
depends on two factors, the length of the base line of 
the picture, and the focal length of the lens. This is 
practically determined by ruling a horizontal line the 
actual length of the base line of the picture, and drawing 
from the centre of this line a perpendicular equal in 
length to the focal length of the lens. Completing the 
triangle, we have in the angle contained by the two sides 
of the triangle the required angle, which can be measured 
by an angle measurer. Experience shows that if the 
base of the picture is greater than or equal to the focal 
length of the lens, the angle included will vary between 
53 and 90; but if the base is less than the focal length, 
these angles will vary between M and 19, or less. It 

140 Naturalistic Photography. 

will be seen, therefore, that the long-focus lenses give 
more suitable angles of view for pictorial purposes. 

Hints on Delicate optical instruments, like lenses, must, it is 

lenses. needless to say, be carefully protected. 

A good lens should be free from scratches, striations, 
dull patches, due to imperfect polishing, and veins ; but air 
bubbles do not affect its value, for it must be remem- 
bered that the shape of the hole through which the light 
passes does not affect the image, save only by cutting off 
some of the light. Thus, if a wafer be stuck to the 
centre of the lens, the image will be found unimpaired. 
Dust and dirt, however, though they do not seriously 
impair the definition of the image, yet cut off much light, 
as will occur to any one when he thinks of the difference 
between the light of a room, when the windows are 
dirty, and when they are perfectly clean. Lenses 
should not be left in bright sunlight, for this causes 
a change that slows them, the dark also injures 
them in certain cases, for, as all microscopists know well, 
darkness causes a change in Canada balsam, with which 
lenses are cemented together. 

Mr. Dallmeyer insists that lenses should be kept dry 
and free from sudden changes of temperature, otherwise 
they may tarnish or sweat, as it is called. Any one who 
has been troubled with this sweating will never forget 
it. Our experience is that the best way to keep lenses is 
in small leather, velvet-lined cases. We generally keep 
with them a piece of soft chamois leather, or an old silk 
handkerchief. No compound of any kind should be used 
to clean lenses, if anything appears to be going wrong 
with them, they should at once be sent to the maker. 

View- A valuable little tool is a view-meter. The handiest 

and compactest we have seen is that supplied in teloscopic 




THERE is no need to despair if there is no dark room, no Dark 

, . ., .. r, o .c room, 

place to build one, no means to pay tor one. borne ot 

our most successful plates were developed in a scullery, 
and others in the bedroom of a house-boat. In fact, the 
sooner the student learns to develop anywhere, the better, 
for no one, studying to do artistic work, should leave his 
plates till his return homo (if he is away on a journey) ,* 

they should without fail be developed the same day on which Develop- 
j? 7 incr rule. 

they are exposed. 

Only for portraiture is a dark room very necessary, Dark 
and you cannot do better than build one as suggested rc 
by Captain Abney, in his " Treatise on Photography," 
modifying it to suit your taste and means. One thing, 
however, you should be careful about, and that is the 
ventilation, and money should not be spared on that de- 
partment. The dark room can be scientifically ventilated Ventila- 
by any good sanitary engineer. We have already, else- tlon - 
where, gone into the subject of ventilation of darkrooms, 
warning photographers of the pernicious effects of 
defective ventilation. 1 The best sinks are made of Apparatus, 
earthenware, as supplied by Doulton. The lamp should 
be large, and give a good light. Ruby glass is, to some, Ruby 
injurious to the eyesight, and has been known to produce glaSB * 
nausea and vomiting, in which cases cathedral green and 
yellow glass should be used. The photographer will 

1 " Ventilation of the Dark Eoom " and " Ammonia Poisoning " 
in the "Year Book of Photography and Photographic News 
Almanac " for 1885-87, and on " Pharyngitis and Photography " 
in the " Year Book of British Journal of Photography " for 1887. 

T 4 2 

Naturalistic Photography. 









require at least eight dishes, and at the very start he 
should make it a rule never to use a dish save for one 
purpose. We consider the best dishes for all purposes 
are made of ebonite. They should be bought in a nest, 
the smallest size taking the largest plate used by the 
operator, and the other seven increasing in size, so 
that one fits into the other. This makes them more con- 
venient for carriage. The dishes should be marked by 
painting on their bottoms. One will be wanted for 
developing, one for the alum bath, one for the changing 
bath, one for the hyposulphite bath, one for the acid bath 
in developing platinotype prints, one for the water bath 
in the same process, one for an intensifying bath, leaving 
one over for odd jobs. 

When it is remembered that hyposulphite of soda is so 
" searching " that it has been known to penetrate through 
the ordinary so-called "porcelain" dishes and crystallize 
on the outside, one may judge how important it is to keep 
a separate dish for each operation. 

A light wooden board with a handle is most convenient 
for putting over the developing dish, in the earlier stages 
of developing, especially when using ortho-chromatic 
plates, but the student must be careful to keep it on a 
shelf by itself. Another requisite is a broad brush of 
fine sable hair, say three inches broad, this had better be 
kept perfectly dry and clean in a box of its own. 

The chemical solutions should be kept in bottles with 
glass stoppers, each bottle should have an enamelled 
label, so that it can be readily seen in the dark room, 
and cannot be destroyed by acids. A zinc washing 
trough which holds two dozen plates must be procured. 
A simple wooden drainage rack is also necessary. We 
have tried several travelling lamps, and have so far found 
no satisfactory one. There are several in the market, 
and the photographer must choose his own. Two 
measuring-glasses at least must be procured, and it is a 
good plan to use Hicks' opaque glass measures, as they 1 
can be so easily read in the dark room. It is as well to 
have one minim glass to hold sixty minims, and a large 
measure to take the full quantity of developer required 

Dark Room and Apparatus. 143 

for one plate. A pair of ordinary scales with weights Scales, 
(apothecaries'), costing a few shillings, will complete the 
list of apparatus required. A few simple printing frames Printing 
will be wanted, one of which should be a size larger than frames - 
the plate used. A square slab of glass, the size of the Slabs of 
plate, and another a few inches larger each way, will be glass ' 
found the best for trimming prints upon. A razor 
or very sharp knife will be found the best tool for this 

Our student should get all these things of good quality, 
and set his face against the syrens who whisper in his 
ear that he ought to get this, and ought to have that ; he 
does not want anything more than we have told him, a 
greater number of things will only embarrass him. We 
are perfectly well aware that the most elaborate fittings 
have been put up by " amateurs " and " professionals/' 
and we are equally aware that these have as yet not led 
to the production of a single picture. 

144 Naturalistic Photography. 



Studio. ]? OR portraiture a studio is a necessity for obtaining the 
best results. We shall very briefly discuss the question 
of studios, for we hold that, provided a studio be large 
enough and light enough, there is not much else to 
consider. We have been in several studios, and worked 
for a considerable time in them, one of which we, having 
hired, had all to ourselves, so that our remarks are based 
on the experience of studios photographic, as well as on 
those of painters and sculptors. 

Top and The best light is undoubtedly a top light and a side 
siae light, light, the side light reaching to within a few feet of the 
ground. It is a common fallacy among some portrait 
photographers that the side light should reach to the 
ground, so that the boots may be lighted. Such an 
idea evidently arises from a misconception of the thing 
required; the boots are to be subdued as much as 
possible, it is the model's portrait we want, not that of 
his boots. The studio in this country should, if possible, 
iace north, or north-east, the roof sloping at an inclina- 
tion of half a right angle. There should be no tall 
buildings standing near it, as exterior shadows and 
reflections interfere with the purity of lighting. 
Building a We do not intend to give specifications for the build- 
etudio. j n g Q f a s t u dio, for this has been already admirably done, 
and we advise any one proposing to build to consult 
?on'~e- ^ E - L ' Wilson ' s " Photographies/' page 163 et seq. In 
cification. our opinion this description leaves nothing to be desired ; 
this proviso only being made, that the studio be made 
long enough to use a long-focus lens, that shall give 

The Studio. 145 

us correct drawing. We have not tried Dallmeyer's new 
lenses in a studio, but if quick enough they should 
be used in preference to all others. Even if these lenses 
be not quick enough for studio work, no doubt one will 
soon be made that will be quick enough. The glazing Glazing, 
should not extend from one end of the studio to the 
other ; an unglazed space should be left at each end. 
By curtains the length of glazing can always be 
shortened. A grey distemper is perhaps the most Walls, 
suitable colour for the walls. 

Successful portraits can be taken in ordinary sitting- Home 
rooms, but we do not think the best results can be P r ." 
obtained in this way. 

Regarding business arrangements and conveniences, 
we have nothing to do with them. 


The old, and even modern, portrait painters are answer- Furniture, 
able for many of the faults to this day committed by 
photographers, because they take portrait painters as 
models. Lawrence was especially guilty in the use of 
conventional backgrounds and accessories. Of photo- 
graphic furniture, as generally understood, there should 
be none. The studio should be furnished simply, and 
with taste, as an ordinary sitting-room. There should 
be no shams of any kind, and the furniture should be 
chosen with a regard to unobtrusiveness and grace, 
rather than to massive beauty. All heavy curtains, 
draperies, hot-house plants, and such incongruous lumber, 
should be avoided. It should be remembered that what 
is wanted is a portrait the face, or figure, or both and 
all accessories should be subdued. It is very little use 
to lay down rules for these things, all must depend on 
the individual taste of the photographer. 

But, above all, avoid shams and cheap ornamental Objets 
objects, such as cheap bronzes, china pots, and Bir- d'Art, so 
mingham bric-a-brac. The chairs should be upholstered called> 
with some good plain coloured cloth, with no pattern, 
and the floor carpeted with matting, or a simply coloured 
carpet without pattern. Let simplicity and harmony 

146 Naturalistic Photography. 

predominate. The room in fact should be a harmony 
in some cool colour, and the furniture should not be felt 
when in the room. Our advice is, buy your furniture 
anywhere, save at a photographic furniture dealer's. 
Head- Head-rests must be entirely tabooed. We have taken 

rests. many portraits, some with very long exposures, and no 
head-rest was necessary. In nine cases out of ten it 
simply ruins the portrait from an artistic point of view. 
Reflectors. Reflectors, on light stands, should be ready for use ; 
but it is obviously erroneous to use large and unwieldy 
reflectors. The reflector is really only necessary for the 
head and shoulders ; for our object is to subdue all other 
parts as much as possible. 

Back- All artificial backgrounds should be banished, together 

grounds. ^^h m ch s tupid lumber as banisters, pedestals, and 
stiles : they are all inartistic in the extreme. It is a 
false idea to represent people in positions they are never 
found in such as a girl in evening dress against a sea- 
scape, and all the other hideous conventionalities of 
the craftsman's imagination. The background which 
is a matter of vital importance should be arranged to 
suit the sitter, that is, a harmony of colour should be 
aimed at. Light fabrics without patterns, or pieces of 
tapestry, will serve every purpose, and give most 
artistic results. The portraitist should keep a selection 
of pieces of fabric of light hues, and a light skeleton 
screen can be kept ready, to which to tack them as re- 
quired, suiting the colour to the dress of the sitter. 
Gradated backgrounds are a mistake, the tonality is much 
better shown by having a background of one tint, and 
so arranging the light that the modelling and tonality 
shall be subtle and true. 

Breadth and simplicity are the foundation of all good 
work. .The background should never be placed close 
behind the sitter, as is customary ; but its distance from 
the sitter should be studied with the lighting. As a 
rule, it is better to place the background three or four 
feet from the back of the sitter. What is required, is that 
the head shall melt softly into the background, and yet 
retain its modelling. 

The Studio. 147 

The camera should work with a shutter the Cadett The 
pneumatic shutter for portraiture being as good as any oamera - 
we know and the pneumatic apparatus should have a 
very long india-rubber tube attached, for reasons to be 
explained later on. 

Means may be arranged for taking pictures by artificial Artificial 
light, if necessary, though personally we do not care for l?J^ 
them. The tonality, though true to the light, has a 
false, artificial appearance by day. There are many 
methods of making artificially lighted pictures : the best, 
in our opinion, are those taken by the electric light. Others 
are done by gas, and by magnesium flashes ; a method 
quite recently revived as something new, whereas it is very 
old. The best of those we have seen were done by the 
American " blitz-pulver ; " but the results appeared to us 
somewhat artificial. We think artists will always avoid 
these artificial lights. 

You must remember that in a studio you are taking a Studio 
person in a room, and that is the impression you must effects - 
try to get in your picture. It is a false idea and an in- 
artistic one to endeavour to represent outdoor effects in a A lighting 
studio. Studio lighting and outdoor lighting are radi- rule - 
cally different, and in a studio you have only to try and 
give an indoor effect. This has been the principle of all 
'great artists. None but an amateur could fail to notice 
the falsity of lighting as seen in outdoor subjects 
taken in the studio. On the other hand, in a studio g tu( ji 
you may get any effect of lighting you can for indoor lighting, 
subjects, for all such effects are to be seen in a room by 
a careful observer. Adam Salomon took many of his Adam 
portraits in front of a red-glass window. This is quite Salomon, 
legitimate, as is also the arrangement of fabrics for the 
background, and the dictating what coloured dress the 
sitter shall wear. Let our student work in harmonies 
of colour as much as possible, and let him never take 
outdoor effects in a studio. Make the room as much 
like a comfortable sitting-room as possible, and hide all 
the tools of the craft. 

L 2 

148 Naturalistic Photography. 



Focussing, HAVING now seen the principles by which we must be 
governed, and the apparatus required, we will briefly 
apply them. 

How to By- focussing' we understand, bringing the ground- 

focahze , J . , ,, B , , . , i & .,1 ,1 i 

glass into the plane which coincides with the sharpest 
projection of the image ; the position of this plane varying 
of course according to the focal length of the lens and 
the distance of the object from the lens. Presuming, then, 
that the camera is in register, and set squarely before the 
object to be photographed, as can be determined by the 
spirit-levels, let the student proceed 10 focus his picture 
as sharply as he can without any stop. He must be care- 
ful that the swing-backs are parallel to the front planes 
of the camera. 

Mental Now the great habit to cultivate is to think in values 

focussing 11 anc ^ masses, that is, you must, in your mind, by constant 
practice, analyze nature into masses and values, and if 
you constantly practise this at the beginning, you will 
find that it becomes a habit, and automatically, as you 
look at a scene or a person, you will see on the ground- 
glass of your mind the object translated into black and 
white masses, and you will notice their relative values. 
This habit is absolutely necessary for artistic work, for it 
is by this analysis that you will learn to know what is 
suitable for pictorial art, and what is not ; for if the masses 
and values in a picture are not correctly expressed, nothing 
will ever put the picture right. Our own experience has 
been that where this analysis has left an impression of a 
few strong masses, the picture has always been stronger 

Focussing. 149 

when finished than otherwise. Now our student, having 
sharply focussed his picture with open aperture, must 
take his head from beneath the focussing cloth, and look 
steadily at his picture ; fixing his eye on the principal ob- 
ject in the picture, he should go through this mental 
analysis, and at the same time note carefully how much 
detail he can see, both in the field of direct and indirect 
vision ; and his sole object should be to render truly 
the impression thus obtained. He should then look on 
the focussing screen, and putting in his largest diaphragm, 
and using his swing-backs, and altering the focussing as , fc ^ J* 
may be necessary, see how truly he can get this impres- down.", 
sion, always remembering that the larger the diaphragm he 
uses the better. For this reason he should always begin 
with an open aperture, and work down to the smaller- 
sizeddiaphragm as needed. By working in this way, he will 
soon see what marvellous power and command he has over 
his translation, all by the judicious use of his focussing 
screen, swing-backs, and diaphragm combined. In focus- 
sing he must remember one thing, never to focus so that 
it can be detected in the picture where the sharper focus- 
sing ends, and the less sharp focussing begins as can be 
brought about by diaphragms. The sharpness should be 
gradated gently. He must also remember that the 
ground-glass picture is false and deceptive in its bright- Ground 
ness, due to obvious physical facts. This is a point of 
great importance, which must not be forgotten when we 
are developing. The ground-glass picture, though 
greatly admired by the Tramontane masters, and 
approved by Canaletto and Ribera, as Count Algarotti 
assures us in one of his raptures on the camera obscura, 
is not so natural and beautiful as it may appear from the 
toy point of view, it is not what the artist wants, any 
more than he wants the pictures of an ordinary camera 
obscura, for if these pictures were satisfying in an 
artistic sense, every one could, by erecting a camera 
obscura, have the satisfaction of his desire, and there 
would soon be an end to the pictorial arts, photography 
included ; for no one who loved this picture so dearly 
would want a camera to take photographs with, but only 

150 Naturalistic Photography. 

one to look through. The deceptive luminosity of the 
ground-glass picture must not be allowed to influence 
our normal mental analysis of the natural scene. As we 
said before, therefore, the principal object in the picture 
must be fairly sharp, just as sharp as the eye sees it, and 
no sharper', but everything else, and all other planes of 

the picture, must be subdued, so that the resulting print 
Rule for i_ if ^ i -j j- i 

focussing, shall give an impression to the eye as nearly identical 

as possible to the impression given by the natural 
scene. But, at the same time, it must be distinctly 
understood that so called "fuzziness" must not be 
carried to the length of destroying the structure of any 
object, otherwise it becomes noticeable, and by attracting 
the eye detracts from the general harmony, and is then just 
as harmful as excessive sharpness would be. Experience 
has shown, that it is always necessary to throw the 
principal object slightly (often only just perceptibly) out 
of focus, to obtain a natural appearance, except when 
there is much moisture in the air, as on a heavy mist-laden 
grey day, when we have found that the principal object 
(out of doors) may be focussed quite sharply, and yet 
appear natural, for the mist scattering the light 
softens the contours of all objects. Nothing in nature 
has a hard outline, but everything is seen against some- 
thing else, and its outlines fade gently into that- some- 
thing else, often so subtilely that you cannot quite dis- 
tinguish where one ends and the other begins. In this 
mingled decision and indecision, this lost and found, lies 
all the charm and mystery of nature. This is what the 
artist seeks, and what the photographer, as a rule, 
strenuously avoids. 

As this loss of outline increases with the greyness 
produced by atmosphere, it follows that it is greater on 
grey days and in the distance; and less on bright, 
Example, sunshiny days. For this reason, therefore, the student 
must be very careful on bright days about his focussing, 
for on such days there is often no mist to assist him, but 
still he must keep the planes separate, or he has no 
picture. Let us imagine an example : A decaying wooden 
landing-stage stands beneath some weeping willows at 

Focussing. 1 5 1 

the edge of a lake. From the landing-stage a path leads 
through a garden to a thatched cottage one hundred 
yards distant ; behind the cottage is an avenue of tall 
poplars. On the landing-stage stands a beautiful sun- 
bronzed village girl in a plain print dress : she is leaning 
against the willow and is looking dreamily at the water. 
We row by on the lake, and are struck by the picture, but 
above all by the dazzling native beauty of the peasant 
girl : our eyes are fixed on the ruddy face and we can look 
at nothing else. If we are cool enough to analyze the 
picture, what is it we see directly and sharply ? The 
girl's beautiful head, and nothing else. We are conscious 
of the willow-tree, conscious of the light dress and the 
decaying timbers of the landing-stage, conscious of the 
cottage, away in the middle distance, and conscious of the 
poplars telling blue and misty over the cottage roof; 
conscious, too, are we of the water lapping round the 
landing-stage ; we feel all these, but we see clearly and 
definitely only the charming face. Thus it is always in 
nature, and thus it should be in a picture. Let us, how- 
ever, still keep to our scene, and imagine now that the 
whole shifts, as does scenery on a stage ; gradually the 
girl's dress and the bark and leaves of the willow grow 
sharp, the cottage moves up and is quite sharp, so that the 
girl's form looks cut out upon it, the poplars in the dis- 
tance are sharp, and the water closes up and the ripples 
on its surface and the lilies are all sharp. And where 
is the picture ? Gone ! The girl is there, but she is a 
mere patch in all the sharp detail. Our eyes keep roving 
from the bark to the willow leaves and on from the cottage 
thatch to the ripple on the water, there is no rest, all the 
picture has been jammed into one plane, and all the in- 
terest equally divided. Now this is exactly what happens 
when a deep focussing lens and small diaphragms are used, 
the operator (for no artist would do this) tries to make 
everything sharp from corner to corner. Let the student 
choose a subject such as we have suggested, and put 
what we have imagined into practice, and he will see the 
result. Yet this "sharp"" ideal is the childish view 
taken of nature by the uneducated in art matters, and 

15-2 Naturalistic Photography. 

they call their productions true, whereas, they are just 
about as artistically false as can be. For this reason, too, it 
must be remembered that the foreground is not always 
to be , rendered sharply. If our principal object is in the 
middle distance, let us say, for example, some cottages on 
the border of a lake ; oar foreground, consisting we will 
suppose of aquatic plants, must be kept down, anl 
purposely made unimportant. This is done chiefly by 
the focussing and stopping. 
, Among the few satisfactory portraits we have seen are, 

portraits. 8 as we nave already said, those by the late Mrs. Cameron. 
In all of these, that fatal sharpness has been avoided ; her 
focussing was carefully attended to. The well-known 

Newton, miniature painter, Sir W. J. Newton, one of the first vice- 
presidents of the Photographic Society of Great Britain, 
distinctly advised that all portraits should be thrown a 
"little out of focus.'' The falsity of focussing a head 
sharply is shown by the fact that by doing so freckles 
and pimples, which are not noticed by the eye, stand out 
most obtrusively, indeed a case is on record, where an 
eruption of small-pox was detected in its earliest stage by 
the lens, while nothing at all could be detected by the 
eye, though this was but partly due to the lens. This 
false focussing has brought in its train another huge 
falsity retouching of which we shall speak more fully 

Sharp focussing, too, by making objects tell too 
strongly, throws them out of tone, and so ruins the 
picture. When sharpness is obtained by stopping down, 
the diaphragm cuts off light, injures normal brilliancy, 
exaggerates shadows, and so throws the picture out 

Scientific of tone. Of course, if the object in view is to produce a 

diagrams. di a g rain for scientific purposes, such, for instance, as 
photographs of flowers fora work on botany, or offish for 
a work on ichthyology, or of butterflies for a work on ento- 
mology, the most brilliant illumination possible should be 
aimed at, and the focussing should be microscopically sharp, 
for such works are required to show the structure as well as 
the form. But, above all, the drawing should be correct, 
and this is obtainable only by the correct use of lenses, 

Focussing. 153 

which, as we have pointed out, has not always been 
the case. If, on the other hand, the operator wishes 
to produce pictures of flowers, butterflies, fruit, fish, 
&c., the same rules hold good as for any other picture, flowers. 
As an example of the treatment of flowers, the student 
will do well to study Mr. Fantin's paintings of flowers. 
We have never yet seen flowers, fruit, or still life artis- 
tically rendered by photography, though we have seen 
some diagrams to all appearances perfect, but in which 
the drawing must have been a little false. We have seen 
it stated by craftsmen who have produced diagrams of 
microscopic and other objects, that they were untouched 
(and rightly so), and that, therefore, these diagrams were 
artistic and true to nature. Of course, from what has been 
already said, it is obvious they were not necessarily true 
to nature (though, perhaps, none the less useful for that), 
and the statement that they were " artistic" arises of course 
from a total misconception as to what that word means. 

Here, then, we must quit this subject, and we hope that 
we have impressed upon the student the fundamental 
necessity for exercising much thought and judgment and 
care in focussing, stopping down, and using the swing- 
backs, for these three all work together, and are quite as 
important as the questions of exposure and development. 

Of course there is no absolute state of " sharpest 
focus," but when we use the word " sharp " we mean the 
sharpest focus obtainable by any existing photographic 
lens when used in the ordinary way. 


Naturalistic Photography. 



Ways of 

" Instan- 

" Instan- 

tion of 

A PLATE can be exposed in three -ways, that is, by 
removing the cap and replacing it, when the exposure is 
made ; by folding the camera cloth and placing it over 
the lens (the cap having been removed), before the 
shutter of the dark-side is drawn, and then quickly 
withdrawing and replacing the cloth and sliding back 
the shutter ; and thirdly by using a mechanical aid, called 
a shutter. 

The first method needs no comment save that the 
cap should be withdrawn in an upward direction. The 
second method has been of invaluable service to us, 
and is much practised by Scotch photographers. By 
this means very rapid exposures can be made, and yet 
detail obtained in dark foreground masses. The third 
method is so well known that hundreds of mechanical 
contrivances, called " instantaneous shutters," have been 
invented. We have always done all the work we could 
by quick exposures, and here we may at once say that 
for artistic purposes " quick exposures " are absolutely 
necessary where possible. We do not say ' ' instantaneous 
exposures," because it is high time that this unmeaning 
word should be relegated to the limbo of photographic 
archaics. Is it not obviously illogical to call exposures 
of Tffo- of a second, and of one second, both instantaneous ? 
yet such at present is the custom. ' ' Instantaneous " 
means nothing at all, for a quicker exposure can be 
obtained by the second method we have described than 
with some shutters. It is in fact difficult to classify 
exposures, for obviously the classification must be based, 

Exposure. 155 

cceteris paribus, on the time the plate is exposed, arid 
this, especially in quick exposures, is not to be measured 
save by special apparatus, which of course is of no 
rough working use. We offer as a suggestion the 
following rough working classification for describing 
exposures. We would define as 


Uncapping and capping lens as quickly as possible. Quick 
Snatching velvet-cloth away and replacing it as quickly ex Psures. 
as possible. All shutter exposures which cannot be timed 
by the ordinary second-hand of a watch; a note being 
added in the case of shutter exposures, giving make of 
shutter, and stating whether it was set to quickest, 
medium, or slow pace. 


All other exposures might be called time exposures, it Time 
being understood by this term, that the exposures were ex P sures - 
long enough to be counted by the second-hand of an 
ordinary watch. A note could always be added giving 
the number of seconds the plate was exposed. 

We are perfectly aware this method would give only 
approximately rough statements of the times of exposure, 
but that is all that is wanted for ordinary work, for after 
all, except in delicate scientific experiments, the times 
given to exposure must always vary greatly, for expo- 
sure, as we shall show, can never be reduced to a science. 
On the other hand, in cases of delicate scientific work, 
it may be required to measure exactly the length of the 
exposure, and this is easily done with the proper appa- 
ratus, as applied by Mr. Muybridge and others. Our 
nomenclature is intended for the use of ordinary operators, 
so that they may describe more accurately than they now 
do the exposure given to a particular plate ; and it is at 
any rate more accurate than any nomenclature now in 
use, for, as we have shown, by the camera cloth method a 
quicker exposure can be made than with many shutters 
working slowly. The fundamental distinction, it seems to 

1 56 Naturalistic Photography. 

us, for everyday work is, whether the time of exposure is 
measurable by the seconds-hand of an ordinary watch or 
not, and that is the point on which our nomenclature is 
based. Hence, when we use the term " quick exposures " 
... . in this work, we mean it as already defined. The shutters 
shutters, themselves should, we think, be called " quick exposure 
shutters/' or simply " exposure shutters," instead of 
instantaneous shutters. We will say but few words on 
" shutters/' as these mechanical aids to exposure are called. 
Theoretically, the best shutter is that which allows the 
lens to work at full aperture for the longest time,, and which 
causes no vibration or alteration of the position of the 
apparatus during exposure. The mechanism should be 
simple and strong, and the whole small in bulk. Mr. T. 
R. Dallmeyer's new central shutter, in our opinion, best 
fulfils these requirements. Another important matter 
is the correct position of the shutter, and this, theoreti- 
cally again, is behind the lens, providing the aperture be 
large enough to prevent any of the rays of light admitted 
by the lens being cut off. But in practice, a shutter work- 
ing in the diaphragm slot of the lens answers best, and 
the very worst way of all is to work the shutter on the 
hood of the lens. 

All portraits should be taken by shutter, and by 
Quick quick exposure, if possible; in fact, we feel sure a 
exposures, first principle of all artistic work in photography is quick 
exposure. There is nothing to be said for time exposures, 
although we are fully aware how much has been written 
on their advantages, and the beneficial effects on the 
resulting negatives. We, however, have never seen 
these wonderful gains, and for quality we have seen very 
rapidly exposed plates result in negatives which will 
hold their own in quality against any, whilst in every other 
respect, there is everything to lose in " slow " or time ex- 
posures. There are cases, of course, when time exposures 
are admissible, and even necessary, as in certain grey- 
day landscapes, but when dealing with figures or 
portraits in good light, let the exposure be as quick as 
possible, ere the freshness and naturalness of the model 
Toe lost. 

Exposure. 157 

From what has already been said, the student can Variation 
understand that the exposure will vary with the atten- of ex- 
dant circumstances. When he considers that there are pos 
several factors to be considered in determining the length 
of exposure, such as the lens used, the diaphragm, the hour 
of day, the season of the year, the constantly varying 
conditions of light, the subject and the plate used, he 
will see how hopeless it is to lay down any rule for the 
time of exposure, but it will be as well to consider the 
effects of these factors, and thus briefly to indicate to 
the student what he must especially study. 

We have already shown how the rapidity of different The lens 
lenses may be compared. This factor, then, can be a d ^' 
determined, but after all it is of little practical value. p ragm- 
It is no doubt necessary when a new lens is used, and 
every photographer may, when using a lens for the first 
time, have to work out its ratio intensity, but as most 
workers know their lenses, this factor is hardly worth 
considering, for by practice the operator easily determines 
their intensities. 

These are by far the most important factors with Meteoro- 
which we have to deal in exposure, and as they are as lo ^? 1 
variable and uncertain as nature herself, so must expo- tions. 
sures vary and be uncertain until meteorology shall 
be perfected. Even the perfect actinometer which we 
are promised will not settle the matter, for there are so 
many subtle conditions to consider besides the mere 
chemical power of light. For instance, for artistic 
reasons of light and shade, it may be absolutely necessary 
to work against the readings of the theoretical perfect 
actinometer. That a perfect actinometer may be of use 
in scientific photography we do not doubt, but that is a 
matter which concerns only scientific specialists. 

A few examples showing the protean aspects of nature, 
and the difficulties of dealing with it, will illustrate our 
meaning. Bouquet has calculated that the sun at an Bouquet, 
altitude of 50 above the horizon is 1200 times brighter 
than at sunrise. If we, then, apply the ordinary chemical 
law, that the chemical action is proportionate to the 
illumination, noon would be the time to give the least 

158 Naturalistic Photography. 

exposure ; but such is not our experience, for the period 
of greatest intensity is often an hour or so before or after 
noon, because the angle of reflection is more favourable 
to us in England. Again, another factor to be considered 
is the presence of clouds ; white clouds needing less ex- 
posure, as they reflect light to a powerful extent. Again, 
in sunrise and sunset light we have to consider refraction, 
the warm colours predominating. Another point to 
consider is our altitude, for there is less atmosphere 
in high altitudes ; therefore, as any Alpine traveller 
knows, the sun acts more powerfully on the peaks than 
in the valleys. Dr. Vogel tells us that the light of the 
blue sky is chemically active and powerfully so. It 
will be seen, then, from previous remarks, why winter 
light is so feeble. Bunsen has worked out the chemical 
power of light, and expressed it in degrees thus : 

12 (noon). 1p.m. 2p.m. 3p.m. 4p.m. 6p.m. 6p.m. 7p.m. 8p.m. 
June 1 38 38 38 37 35 30 24 14 6 
Deo. 21 20 18 15 9 

Thus at noon on June 21st the light is nearly twice 
as powerful as on December 21st, and when we couple 
with this fact the moisture generally found in the atmo- 
sphere at mid-winter, we see how deceiving are appear- 
ances. Again, it is acknowledged by many that the light 
in autumn is one and a half times as great as it is in 
spring ; but we cannot act on tbis knowledge alone for 
outdoor work, for the conditions of vegetation are quite 
different, for, as Tyndall has shown, " in delicate spring 
foliage the blue of the solar light is for the most part 
absorbed, and a light mainly yellowish-green, but 
containing a considerable quantity of red, escapes from 
the leaf to the eye : ... as the year advances the crimson 
gradually hardens to a coppery red." 

Another complication is the east wind. It certainly 
sweeps away the moisture from the air and dries every- 
thing up, giving all things a black hue, and bringing 
them up closer to view, at the same time dwarfing 
distant objects ; and while an east wind does all this by 
taking away moisture from the atmosphere, the actinic 
value of light is at the same time lowered. On the other 

Exposure. 159 

hand, after rain, the light acts quickly, probably owing to 
the numerous reflections from moist leaves, and from the 
fact that they do not absorb so much light under these 
conditions. That the warm colours require a longer 
exposure than others is too well known to need dwelling 
on. The presence of water in the foreground, on the 
other hand, necessitates a shorter exposure : even the 
amount of sky included in the picture will affect the 
length of exposure. The existing temperature, too, 
strongly affects the negative. 

It is perhaps necessary here to state that there is No rule for 
no set key or scheme of lighting to work by. Some ex P sure - 
untrained persons have preached that no photograph 
should be taken when there is no sun, or that sunlight is 
the best time for taking a photograph : such statements 
are as absurd as childish, one might as well ordain that all 
music should be played in one key. As beautiful 
pictures are to be obtained on the grey dull days of 
November as in sunny June. We remember once reading 
a statement that all paintings were of sunshine subjects. 
We quite forget by whom this extraordinary statement 
was made, but at any rate the writer must have been 
very ignorant of his subject ; he could never have heard 
of half the great pictures of the world ; but surely the 
name of Rembrandt might have occurred to him. A 
photograph must be true in sentiment, and true to the 
impression of the time of day, just as a picture must be. 
There are some subjects which in sunshine look beautiful, 
and which on grey days are worthless, and vice versa. 
Therefore, here again there is no rule, each subject must 
be judged by itself. 

The rapidity of plates can be measured by an instru- Sensito- 
ment called a sensitometer. That one in general use is m 
made by Warnerke. But this sensitometer, like many 
so-called scientific things in photography, seems to us 
very unscientific, for the light cannot be uniform; for, as 
is well known, the light given from phosphorescent 
paint varies in intensity with the temperature. Since 
writing this, we have been informed that this has been 
proved to be the case by Dr. Vogel, who, in addition, 

1 60 Naturalistic Photography. 

brings against this sensitometer serious errors of ex- 
periment, due to yellow glass being employed. Dr. 
Nicol, too, has stated that the screens sent out vary in 

exposure ^ e nave seen now * ne rapidity of a lens is determined ; 

tables. beyond, then, the comparing the relative rapidities of 
lenses, all tables of exposures are fallacious and unscien- 
tific. Can absurdity go any further than some of the data 
of some of these so-called scientific tables : " Panoramic 
View/ ; " Living objects out of doors/' &c. ? Briefly, what 
is the difference of exposure required on a living ass and 
on a dead donkey, both out of doors ? But seriously, let 
the student be not led away by such chimeras, for there 
can be no tables of exposures until the scL 400 of 
meteorology is as fixed a science as mathematics ; and any 
attempt to work by exposure tables will end in dismal 
, failure. If our word is not sufficient to convince any 
reader, let him note what two eminent scientists think of 
these tables. Dr. Vogel says, in one of his works, 
" There is no rule which determines the length of time 
a photograph has to be exposed to the light \" and 
Captain Abney has told us he considers such tables 
absurd and unscientific. It is with his sanction that we 
quote him on the subject. Exposure must be judged 
by circumstances : no artificial aids will help. For- 
tunately for us, plates allow of considerable latitude of 

But as in all good things, simplicity goes hand in 
hand with perfection. We have advocated quick expo- 
sures as absolutely essential to artistic work, and it 
follows, therefore, that in making quick exposures there 
is less liability of going wrong ; so the two work hand in 
hand. He who exposes slowly misses the very essence 
of nature, and it is this very power of exposing so 
quickly that gives us a great advantage over all other 
arts. The painter has to resort to all sorts of devices to 
secure an effect, which perhaps only lasts for half an 
hour in the day. Not so with photographers, if we see 
and desire to perpetuate an effect, it is ours in the 
twinkling of an eye, and thus in a really first-rate photo- 

Exposure. 161 

graphy there will always be a freshness and naturalism 
never attainable in any other art. And here we would 
state definitely that the impression of these quick expo- 
sures should be as seen by the eye, for nothing 
is more inartistic than some positions of a galloping 
horse, such as are never seen by the eye but yet exist in 
reality, and have been recorded by Mr. Muybridge. Here, 
then, comes in the artist, he knows what to record and 
what to pass over, while the craftsman, full of himself 
and his dexterity, tries to take a train going at sixty 
miles an hour, and lo ! it is standing still, or he expends 
his energy in taking a yacht bowling along abeam because 
that result is more difficult to obtain than to take it 
goin^e^way from him, and he calls it natural and there- 
fore artistic. Of course such performances are born of 
ignorance and vanity. Hundreds of such things have 
been done in the past, hundreds will be done in the* 
future, and they will sell, but only to be finally destroyed. 
No photographer has yet done a series of marine pictures ; 
here and there one sea-picture has been done which has 
oftener been the result of chance than of art. As for the 
ordinary photographs of yachts, they are mere statements 
of facts that merit no artistic consideration. 

Here, then, we must leave the question of exposure. 
It is, perhaps, the most important and the most difficult 
of all photographic acts. In the studio the matter is 
simpler than out of doors, because the light is not so 
much affected by reflections and various meteorological 
conditions ; in landscape work, on the other hand, 
exposure becomes a most difficult problem, yet long 
experience can bring an intelligent man to give compara- 
tively correct exposures, so that the resulting picture may 
be developed to obtain the exact impression that he re- 
quires, still, eve-i after years of experience, he will at times 
find himself baffled and humiliated by failure. 

It is in exposures that intuition acts as it does in all 
intellectual matters, and he who can seize on the right 
exposure at once by instinct is the photographer born, and 
unless, after some practice, the student can do this, there 
is little hope that his work will ever rise above mediocrity. 


1 62 Naturalistic Photography. 



Study of BEFORE entering on the subject of development, it is 
chemistry, necessary to tell the student that if he does not already 
understand the principles of chemistry, he should lose no 
time in doing so, and as aids to such understanding he 
cannot do better than get Roscoe's " Lesson's in Elemen- 
tary Chemistry/' * and Abney's "Photography with 
Emulsions/' and master the chapters mentioned in the 
footnote, ignoring the rest for the time. Also let him 
buy Bloxham's " Laboratory Teaching/' For a few 
shillings he can purchase apparatus enough to do qualita- 
tive analysis. This he will be able to do by following 
Mr. Bloxham's directions, omitting, perhaps, testing with 
the blow-pipe. If he has the time and means, he will do 
well to do some quantitative analysis, working, say with 
water, since it is of such immense importance to the 
photographer. He will find a knowledge of chemistry 
as interesting as useful, and the power of observation 
and accuracy acquired by the study will be invaluable 
in subsequent stages of his work. We refer the student 
to works on chemistry by specialists, because we think 
it is a mistake to swell the bulk of our book by an expo- 
sition of chemical principles. We caution the student, 

Roscoe's Chemistry : 

Lessons 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 
18, and potassium, sodium, and ammonium in lessons 19, 
22, 23 ; chromium and uranium in lesson 25 ; mercury, 
silver, and platinum in lessons 26, 27, and 28. 
"Photography with Emulsions :" 
Caps. 1, 2, 3, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 22, 24, and 31. 

Development. 163 

however, who intends to take up photography as an art, 
to have nothing to do with plate-making. That manu- Plate- 
facture can only be done satisfactorily by experts con- makm g- 
stantly employed at it, and it is as reasonable to expect 
a painter to prepare his own colours, and make his own 
canvas, as to insist upon a photographer making his own 
plates. Some people have tried to propagate the false 
idea that a picture taken on a plate of the exhibitor's own 
making has a special kind of merit, but obviously this is 
only true when the object is an " Emulsion process com- 
petition." In judging of the merits of a picture, no facts 
should be taken into consideration, save the arfc expressed 
by the picture. Still the student should know the 
methods by which his plates are prepared, and that his Plates, 
chemistry will teach him, and when he has found plates 
which suit him, let him keep to them. We have worked 
with fourteen different kinds of plates, and have found 
most of them good, though each requires different treat- 
ment. One piece of advice is, however, necessary, always 
buy your plates direct from the makers, unless you can 
rely upon your dealer. Some plates are, of course, much 
quicker than others, and this point the beginner must care- 
fully bear in mind, making his exposures accordingly. He 
must not forget, however, that there are brands of plates 
which are " starved " of silver ; these he should avoid, 
and it would be well if a vigilance committee were vigilance 
appointed in every society to test batches of plates occa- o m - 
sionally, and report on them in the photographic journals, mittees - 
thus showing up the fraudulent manufacturers. Assuming, 
then, that the student has carefully studied the chemistry 
of development and has fixed on a satisfactory brand of 
plates, we will proceed to give him a few practical hints, 
but before we do so we must get rid of an obstacle in his 
path, and that is the wet-plate process. 

If the student were to ask ten middle-aged photo- Wet-plate 
graphers whether they prefer a wet plate or a dry process, 
plate negative, nine out of ten would, without doubt 
answer, <f Oh, a wet-plate negative."" If the student is 
curious and asks, why ? he will get a vague answer, in 
which the words " bloom " and " beauty " play con- 

M 2 

1 64 Naturalistic Photography. 

spiruous parts, the adjectives reminding him of an 
advertisement for patent balms for the skin. The fact 
is, not knowing the first principles of art, photographers 
have raised for themselves false gods, and they are still 
worshipping them. Let us at once and most emphati- 
cally state that wet plate negatives do not give so true 
an impression of nature as a gelatino-bromide plate, nor 
are - the results so artistic. We have seen much of the 
best of Mrs. Cameron's work, and she obtained from 
collodion and silver some of the best results ever obtained 
from wet plates, for she had artistic insight, yet even in 
her work the tonality is not so true, and the te quality" 
and freshness is not so fine as can be obtained from 
gelatino-bromide negatives. The work by this process is 
hard, and incapable of expressing texture correctly, while 
the general impression is more or less artificial. This is 
fortunate for us, for the slowness of the wet-plate process 
would seriously handicap it, even if the artistic result 
were better than that of dry plates. The inadequacy of 
collodion plates is emphasized when we look at the work 
of the craftsmen who used them, and whose ideal was 
sharpness and "bloom." Such work will be found most 
unnatural and inartistic. Surely many of the false ideas 
current amongst photographers arose from the evolution of 
the art. Daguerreotypes, the first photographs, were shiny, 
and most of the subsequent processes followed in their 
wake, until one clear-sighted photographer, Blanquart- 
Evi ard, tried to combat the evil tendencies. Considering, 
then, the poor artistic quality of collodion plates and their 
slowness in exposure, there is absolutely nothing to be 
said in their favour for art work. It is decided, then, that 
our student/ will work with gelatino-bromide plates. 

We venture to state briefly certain hints founded on 

bcred in the chemistry and practice of development, which the 

develop- student must have at his fingers' ends, for let him remem- 

ir) - ber that the vital question of tone depends on development. 

That exceedingly nice question of getting the tones in 

approximately true relation, which gives all artists so much 

work, gives him who uses photography as his medium no 

less thought, and it is on account of the plasticity of the 

Development. 165 

process of development that we can at once take our stand 
and repudiate the ignorant assertion that photography 
is a mechanical process. Of course there are fifty other 
reasons why it is not merely a mechanical process, to 
mention one more of which will be enough, i.e. the variety 
of exposures ranging between the YFOO" ^ a secon< i ( as 
with Muy bridge's work), and a couple of hours as in taking 
an interior. Developing is really what modelling is to 
the sculptor, and as art guides the modeller's hand, so it 
must the photographer's who wishes to obtain pictures, 
and the art value of the work of both men will be pro- 
portionate to the art knowledge and insight of the workers. 
Now you can understand how absolutely necessary to pic- 
torial photography is a knowledge of art. Where photo- 
graphers are devoid of all art knowledge, their aim is to 
get "pluck," "nice gradation," "vim," " snap," " sparkle," 
" brilliancy," to use only a few of their strange and 
cheap terms, and, according to them all these loosely 
named qualities must be present equally in a sunny pic- 
ture and in a grey day picture, if ever they dare to 
expose a plate on a grey day. It is all such talk that 
has brought photography down to be called a merely 
mechanical process, which of course it becomes in the 
hands of those who can and do give " pluck " and 
" sparkle " to every negative, regardless of effect. It 
never occurs to these that each picture is a problem in 
itself, and needs different management from beginning to 
end. They aim for their " sparkle" from the moment of 
exposure to the end of development, and obtain all the 
other qualities described so eloquently by their cheap 
adjectives, by their unvarying development. 

Now let the student, keeping all this in mind, carefully 
commit to memory these hints, for they are of vital 

Placing the plate in water before using the developer Hints. 
is equivalent to weakening the developer. 

By first immersing the plate in the pyrogallic acid 
solution with no restrainer or alkali, the subsequent 
development is slowed, and greater contrast obtained. 
When pyrogallic acid is added in excess, too great 

1 66 Naturalistic Photography. 

density and fog result. By adding pyrogallic acid, 
greater density and contrast are obtained. 

If the high lights are getting too dense,, before the 
detail in the shadows is well out, take the plate out of 
the developer and let the details develop up with the 
amount of solution contained in the film, and then re- 
place it in the developer for density, if necessary. 

Develop plates coated with quick emulsions to a 
greater density than others. 

Where there is much black and white in the picture, 
as in photographing sculpture against black velvet, 
weaken the pyrogallic acid. The alkali brings up the 
detail, and in properly exposed pictures increases den- 
sity. In excess it causes fog. The rate at which the 
picture is to be developed can be governed by the 
restrainer, which also checks detail and increases den- 
sity. For long exposures the restrainer should be freely 
used, whilst for quick-exposure work its use should be 
very limited. 

Too much hyposulphite in the developer tends to 
solarization. Although its value in the alkaline deve- 
loper has been denied, we are of opinion that in certain 
cases it is invaluable; it accelerates development in dark 
shadows, rendering the reflected light in the shadows as 
nothing else can. Captain Abney recommends its use 
in the ferrous oxalate developer only, but we are well 
assured of its value in conjunction with the alkaline 
developer in all cases of very rapid exposure. 

The action of the developer is of course increased by 
the alkali, and slowed by the oxidizing agent, but the 
tonality is affected unless it be well governed by the 

If a picture flashes out quickly, add the restrainer and 
plenty of water. If it comes up very slowly, mix a new 
developer containing half as much restrainer as the 
normal and twice as much alkali. 

The quicker the action of the developer the less 
marked the relative tones; this is most important to 
remember; the pyrogallic acid should never be ex- 
tremely strong, never perhaps so strong as recommended 

Development. 167 

in the standard formulae. We must remember, then, Method, 
that we have our three necessary factors for develop- 
ment, the oxidizer, the alkali, and the restrainer, all of 
which we can modify at will. On our minds, too, we 
have, or should have, a vivid impression of the picture 
translated into black and white ; we remember what we 
wish to emphasize, and what to subdue, so that the re- 
sulting picture shall be true intone and impression. We 
proceed then to mix our developer accordingly, remem- 
bering first that the temperature of the developing- 
room makes a difference, and remembering that the 
photographic image exists on the film to a degree pro- 
portionate to the actinic value of the light which fell 
upon it. Therefore, if it is a brightly-lighted landscape 
in sunshine, taken with a full exposure, we must get a 
picture in a high key, but be it remembered in such a 
picture the light greys will be lost in the whites, as has 
been already shown ; on the other hand, if it is a very low- 
toned effect, the dull greys will be lost in the blacks. We Slow 

must never forget to develop all 'plates slowly, let this devel P- 
, , r , / i i i ji ment. 

be our ever-present rule, for by developing slowly, the 
student has far more command over his work, and 
that is what every artist seeks. No haphazard work, 
but complete control, so that we can mould the picture 
according to our will. And here we must again remind 
the student that he can never get scientifically correct 
gradations from high light to deep shadow, therefore he prepared to get only the true impression, and as 
a fundamental law, let him remember to watch over the 
truth of the lowest tones. 

It must not be forgotten that Nature is ever varying, Meteoro- 
and that the chemicals will act differently under different conditions 
conditions of temperature, mixture, electrical conditions, to be 
&c., &c., and the worker must learn to modify them ac- adhered to 
cordingly; thus weaker solutions should be used in " 

summer and on mist effects. In fact, the more one 
sees into photography, the more difficult does the matter 
become, for every picture is, from start to finish, a new 
problem. Artistic work is not nearly so amenable to 
rules as is laboratory work, where the conditions are 

1 68 Naturalistic Photography. 

generally more constant and better determined. Even 
the state of the weather at the time of exposure has 
great influence. The careful observer will soon see, in 
going over a collection of first-rate negatives, developed 
by the same hand and developer, that they all differ in 
quality, each one has phvsical characteristics of its own, 
which are the combined resultant of these protean con- 
ditions of Nature, and that such is the case is yet another 
proof of the individuality of a photograph per se, apart 
from any other reasons. 

Another very important point is the fact that the 
light does not act on the film proportionately -to the 
length of exposure ; the greatest action occurs at the 
earliest part of the exposure, as can be proved, in a rough 
way, by exposing a plate on different subjects for the 
same length of time. This fact alone at once and ob- 
viously creates a fatal objection to composite photo- 
graphy. It is a fact which must be constantly remem- 
bered in relation to tonality. It has been stated that 
an under-exposed plate can be improved by being kept 
(undeveloped) for several months, the idea being that 
the action having once begun will continue, but this is 
not our experience with gelatine plates, though we have 
observed something of the kind in working with carbon 
tissues. Instead of keeping his exposed plates, our 
advice to the student is develop your negatives as soon as 
possible after exposure, never later than the day on which 
they are takt-n, and for these reasons. First, and chiefly, 
of because you should develop your negative whilst yet the 
exposure, mental impression of what you are trying for is fresh. 
You have, we will hope, analyzed your subject and 
thought it all out in black and white masses, and by de- 
veloping while that analysis is still vivid to you, you 
stand a very much greater chance of getting a true 
thing. Secondly, of course, you are on the spot to take 
another negative if the first prove a failure. For complete 
success, this is the only way, and even if it entail carrying 
about a cumbersome dark tent, the practice will in the 
end bring its own reward, and it must be insisted upon 
as the best method of working. The astounding habit 

Development. 1 69 

which some industrial photographers indulge in, of 
sending their operators all over the country, while they 
themselves stay at home to develop the work of those 
and other operators, accounts in a great measure for the 
numerous parodies of Nature which deck the shop- 
windows. This is truly mechanical work, and we are 
prepared to say that no one, save by mere chance, can 
produce perfect artistic work, who does not develop his 
own plates on the spot. Then, again, the student of photo- 
graphy who wishes to produce artistic work must not 
hurry or over-produce. Onepicture produced in a month 
would be well worth the time and trouble spent on it. 
We once asked an eminent landscape painter how many 
.plates he would be content to produce in a year if he 
were a photographer, His answer was, " Twenty first- 
rate things would be good," and that meant working all 
the year round. We recommend that saying as one 
worthy to be remembered. The poet Gray purchased 
immortality by one short poem ; many historians and 
novelists, now forgotten, have written as many volumes 
as there were verses in that one poem of Gray's, yet 
few would prefer the oblivion of the prolific ones to the 
name that Gray has won. 

But we must go back to developing, and we come Ferrous 
now to the question of,. (t What developer to use ? " In oxalate 
our opinion the ferrous oxalate developer is unsuited to 
artistic work. At one time we used it for negatives and 
positives. For negatives we do not think it gives the 
quality which can be obtained with the alkaline developer 
nor does it allow of the same control, which is, of course, 
a very grave fault. For positives, on the other hand, 
where the conditions are better known, and where 
absolute purity of film is required, it is very useful, but 
as we are not concerned with positives here, we will not 
go further into the matter. 

We must impress upon the student the necessity of Chemi- 
always using fresh and pure chemicals, and to secure ca s> 
such, it is wise to procure them from a good chemist. 

Re-sublimated pyrogallic acid should always be used, 
and re- crystallized sulphite of soda, and, above all, be 

1 70 Naturalistic Photography. 

sure the water is pure. For all operations where 
chemical action results, none but pure non-aerated 
water should be used, preferably, boiled, distilled water, 
for the air and other impurities in ordinary water may 
be most harmful, as any one who has studied the analysis 
of water and air knows well. 

Let the developers (the stock solutions) be mixed with 
boiling or distilled water, for this will aid in preserving 
them. The alum and hyposulphite solutions should 
be mixed with cold boiled distilled water, the alum bath 
being a saturated solution. 

Perhaps the simplest advice we can give as to the 
particular developer to be used is to take as the normal 
Standard developer one mixed according to the formula sent out 
3 P er< with the plates which the student has chosen to work 
with, but the student must not use it in the exact pro- 
portions given by the maker. Let the student mix up 
the stock solutions as told, varying the constituents as 
the case in hand demands. If he has carefully and 
thoroughly read his chemistry, and if he remembers the 
hints we have given him, he will have no difficulty in 
following out the directions. 

He should, as a rule, never use more than two-thirds of 
the amount of pyrogallic acid recommended ; let him be 
very careful how he uses the restrainer, and let him add 
the ammonia only in small quantities, unless the expo- 
sure has been very rapid. As a rule let him work with 
weak developers. We could easily give a dozen or even 
fifty formulae for developers, but the student would be 
no wiser if we did, only more confused. Every photo- 
grapher fancies his own particular formula, but we have 
no belief in any special favourites; we have worked 
with many, and find the results depend altogether on 
the quantities used and the manner of developing rather 
than on the constituents. Take, then, the formula re- 
commended by your plate-maker, but use it, as we have 
said, with judgment. Begin with a sufficiency of pyro- 
gallic acid (according to the subject), use little restrainer, 
except in over-exposure, and add the ammonia slowly, 
adding a few drops from time to time as required. In 


short, make, it your rule to use weak developers, and 
develop slowly. If you think you are likely to have 
under-exposed, add ten to twenty drops of a one per 
cent, solution of hyposulphite of soda, using no restrainer. 
Some unscientific persons imagine that development can 
be reduced to a science, and that absolute quantities of 
each solution must be used. One might as well expect 
a physician always to prescribe the same doses. Each 
picture requires a developer of its own ; that should 
never be forgotten. We have tried hydrokinone instead 
of pyrogallic acid ; a given quantity of hydrokinone does 
the work of double that quantity of pyrogallic acid, 
but it has no advantages, so far as we can see, 
except for the development of under-exposed plates. 
For very rapid work we recommend the carbonate- 
of-potash developer, as green fog does not result. The 
formula we use is Dr. Eder's : 

A. ty Pure dry mono-carbonate of potash . 90 parts Eder's 

Water ._ . 200 , potash 

B. Pyrogallic acid . . ... .12 

Sulphite of soda . . . . .25 

Citric acid 1 

Water 100 


Before using-, mix forty to sixty drops of A with 
three ounces of water, and the same quantity of B. We 
generally use more water than that recommended in the 

Now it win be remembered that in bright sunny effects 
brilliancy, and therefore density, is needed; the gamut 
of light and shade is not so extended as in some subjects, 
for the shadows are bright with reflected light, but the 
whole must be brilliant and in a high key. In our 
opinion Dr. Eder's potash developer gives this better 
than any other. For snow scenes, on the other hand, 
where there are often very black heavy shadows, we re- 
commend, as we have done before, the developer given 
by the maker of the plates, used in a weak solution. 

No photographer need hope to obtain perfect results Local 
and exactly what he wishes, without resorting to local develop- 
treatment ; and here once more the knowledge of the m 

172 Naturalistic Photography. 

artist steps in and places him at an advantage over the 
craftsman, but no one without sound art-knowledge 
should attempt this local development. On the other 
hand, with a thorough knowledge of the tonality of his 
subject, the artist can, by local development, so modify 
his work that he will be able to obtain wonderfully true 
results. Let us imagine such a subject as a dark tree in the 
foreground of a landscape with a bright delicate distance. 
No manner of development will bring these into true rela- 
tion unless local treatment is resorted to. Unfortunately, 
directions cannot be given for this work, for each subject 
will of course require special treatment ; the rationale of 
the practice, however, is founded on the genera! chemi- 
cal principles of photography. For use in local develop- 
ment, then, it is always wise to keep a series of small 
paint-brushes at hand. All three developers may thus 
be used locally with great effect. During local develop- 
ment, the plate should constantly be re-plunged into the 
developer, so that the local development may not show. 
We strongly recommend the student always to develop by 
artificial light, for by this method he will have a more 
regular standard to judge of the quality of his negative 
than if he trusts to the varying strength of day- 

The best way of judging of the tonality of a negative 
is to hold it up from time to time before the light of the 
developing-room ; correct judgment on this matter can, 
however, only be obtained by long experience. The stu- 
dent will be told in the printed directions supplied with 
many plates that if the image does not come up in 10 or 
15 seconds, the plate has been under-exposed. This is 
not our experience, and, as a rule, the image takes longer 
to show than the time named. We prefer to judge by 
the way the image conies up. If the highest lights come up 
very sharply denned and turgid, then the plate is under- 
exposed, but if they come up delicately, and detail begins 
to appear gradually over the various parts of the plate, 
all is well. But all this will only become familiar by ex- 
perience. By constant habit the student will mentally 
run over the facts of the problem before him, as does a 

Development. 173 

physician, and proportionately to his skill will lie apply 
the right remedy at the right time. 

After development the plate should be well washed, After 

and then placed in an alum bath. Alum acts as a treatment 

, , 11,1 _c i i of plate, 

scavenger, and clears up all the remains 01 the de- 
veloper. Next the plate should again he well washed, 
and put in the hyposulphite bath. This bath should be 
constantly renewed, for as soon as it becomes well dis- 
coloured it is inadvisable to continue its use. It should 
not be made stronger than 1 to 5, 1 to 10 being the best 
proportion. Taking the plate from the fixing bath, you 
should wash it very thoroughly, and re-plunge it into a 
fresh alum bath, leaving it for a few minutes, then again 
wash it, and put it into a plate- washer, the water of which 
should be frequently changed. It can then be placed in 
a drying rack, and left to dry gradually in a dry room, 
where no dust is raised. 

It is, in our opinion, always well to expose two plates Duplicate 
on each subject, -for the operator can thus, in a second plates, 
plate, correct any error he may detect in the first. This 
is our own invariable rule, and the practice, apart from 
the better results obtained, has taught us better than any 
other method could have done, how wonderfully the plate 
can be brought under the operator's will. It is hardly 
necessary to say the first plate should be examined after 
development, by daylight, before proceeding to develop 
the second. Once having seen a beautiful thing in 
nature, the enthusiastic student will determine to get it 
perfectly f if it takes fifty plates and as many days to do 
it in. 

We strongly advise those desirous of doing artistic Study of 
work to begin by studying tone, expose (always giving tone ' 
two exposures to each subject) on selected subjects, 
especially fit for the study of tone ; for example, a figure 
in a white dress against a white background, another in 
a black dress against a black background, and then a 
white dress against a black background, and a -black 
dress against a white background; some white flowers 
against a sheet of white paper; yacht-sails against the 
sky ; faces against the sky ; black velvet in bright sun- 

1 74 Naturalistic Photography. 

shine, and on a grey day; yellow flowers (with ortho- 
chromatic plates) on a white background. In short, the 
student should think of all the possible harmonies and 
discords that can be found indoors and out of doors, and 
he should, before taking a plate, make a mental trans- 
lation of the subject into black and white, and put on 
paper roughly, with a piece of charcoal, what he expects 
to get, by drawing rough masses in tone of the subject. 
He should at first think nothing whatever of composition, 
or the more poetical qualities of a picture ; but simply 
study tone, and by this he will learn thoroughly exposures 
and development. Let him eschew all requests to take 
portraits, dogs, horses, parks, and what-nots ; but let him 
always study tone. When he has mastered tone, and 
with it exposure and development, he knows the most 
difficult part of his technique and practice, let him then 
proceed to picture-making. In this early stage let him 
take anything and everything that is a study of tone, and 
let him take it anyhow, no posing, no arrangement, and 
when he knows his metier thoroughly let him destroy all 
these early plates ruthlessly. We strongly advise him to 
give away no prints of early work, or he will most surely 
rue the day when he did so. In our opinion a year is not 
too much in which to work in this way, both in doors and 
out of doors, in studios and out, with shutter and without, 
before there is any attempt to take a portrait or picture 
of any kind. 

Accidents I n working with gelatine plates various unavoidable 

and faults - accidents and faults will crop up, some of which can, 
however, be remedied. Such cases we will now go into. 

Under- Gives chalky whites and sooty blacks, ergo no tonality, 

tre ' ergo worthless. No remedy, destroy at once. 

Over- Gives thin negatives. What a thin negative is, is a 

Lre * matter of opinion, and must be settled by a comparison of 
the print with the impression of nature which it is wished 
to obtain. For many effects thin negatives are in- 
valuable, and the student must not take the ordinary 
photographer's opinion as to his negatives ; but only that 
of an artist, for, as has been shown, low-toned prints are 
unrecognized by the ordinary craftsman, his aim and 

Development. 175 

object is never to produce such things, these he desig- 
nates by all sorts of names, whereas they may be, by their 
tonality, infinitely truer than his " sparkling " falsehoods. 
In short, it all depends on what the student wishes to 
express. Some of the best work done has been produced 
from negatives made purposely thin, which have at the 
same time been true in tone, and full of breadth. The 
density of a negative can be increased by intensifying the intensifi. 
negative ; but it must not be forgotten that intensification cation, 
does not, in our opinion, correct the tonality, this is a 
matter of great importance which has been overlooked. 
From this it will be seen that a negative that requires 
intensification is worthless for artistic purposes, and had 
better be destroyed at once. But as intensification may 
be required for some particular object, we must caution 
the student against the ordinary perchloride of mercury 
and ammonia intensifier. In many cases it acts well 
enough, in many others it acts unevenly and in patches, 
and in all cases it is not permanent. The best intensifier Dr. Eder's 
we know of is Dr. Eder's, whose formula we give intensifier. 

iy Uranium nitrate . . . . .15 grs. 
Potassium ferricyanide . . .15 p:rs. 
Water 4 J 

Wash the plate thoroughly after fixing, so that no 
hyposulphite remains, and immerse in the intensifier. It 
works up the scale from the lower tones, which is an 
advantage over any other. To remove all the hyposul- 
phite of soda it is well to treat the plate before using the 
intensifier, as Captain Abney directs. A drachm of a 
20-vol. solution of peroxide of hydrogen should be mixed 
with 5 oz. of water, and the plate soaked in it for half an 
hour, and then washed. 

The student will find that for certain effects he may Fog. 
intentionally produce a slight fog over his plate, as has 
often been done with very good results ; but if his plates 
are unintentionally fogged, they are ruined. Fog is due 
to light having had access to the plate, either during 
manufacture, during exposure, or during development. 
By developing an unexposed plate it can be proved 

1 76 Nat lira Us tic Photography. 

whether it was fogged during the manufacture, as In that 
case the plate turns black. If the fog- is caused by a 
leaky camera the edges of the plate, which are generally 
clear glass, are not fogged, for they have been hidden 
behind the rebate of the dark slide. Light coming 
through the dark slide shows itself in lines or patches, 
and is not general. If all these sources have been 
eliminated, the dark room must be suspected. This is 
tested by putting a plate in the slide, drawing the shutter 
out half way, and exposing the plate for a few minutes to 
the developing light. If the exposed half fogs, then the 
dark room is to blame. 

Red fog. We have only met with this phenomenon once, and that 

Green fog. wa s in developing a uranium plate. This is green by 

reflected light, and red by transmitted light. It is 

generally deposited at the corners of the plate and round 

the edge. 

Yellow Are rarely met with, and are yellow and brown by 

ft" r n reflected light-, whereas stains are coloured only by trans- 
mitted light. The student can easily distinguish between 
fogs and stains in this way. We have been very suc- 
cessful experimentally with Captain Abney's method of 
clearing off green fog. He recommends the following 
solution to be used alter fixing : 

ty Ferric chloride 50 grs. 

Potassium bromide 30 errs. 

Water iv 3 

The plate should be well washed after this treatment, 
and developed up with the ferrous oxalate developer. 

But such plates are not always saved artistically by 
the method, for the tonality may be thrown out, and the 
texture of substances is nearly always damaged. 
Frilling. I s due to the expansion of the gelatine, and will rarely 
occur if the plate be put in the alum bath before fixing. 
The gelatine can be made to contract by soaking in 
methylated spirits of wine. 

Blisters. Are. of rare occurrence, and will dry out if the plate 
be carefully handled and washed in alum, as directed. 

Development. 177 

They may be treated locally with methylated spirit, 
which causes the gelatine to contract. 

The best reducer we know of is Dr. Eder's. He recom- Dense 
mends the use of A., one part chloride of iron to eight ne s atives - 
parts of water. B., two parts neutral oxalate of potash to 
eight parts of water. A well-known authority on photo- 
graphic matters, Dr. H. W. Vogel, says, " Both solutions 
keep a long time without deteriorating. Immediately 
before using, equal parts of A. and B. are mixed, forming 
a bright green solution, which keeps well for several 
days in the dark, but decomposes in the light. Of this 
mixture a little is added to a fresh and strong solution 
of ' hypo/ In difficult cases 1 part ( hypo ' and J to I of 
iron solution are employed. The plate to be reduced is 
placed in this solution. The image weakens quickly and 
uniformly. The plate is taken out and washed just before 
the desired reduction is reached, because the action 
continues during the washing, gradually diminishing 
under the stream from the tap. This reducer acts on 
plates developed either with * pyro ' or ( oxalate/ and 
does not destroy the details in the shadows like cyanide. 
There is also less tendency to frill than with the cyanide 

Reducers, like intensifiers, should not be resorted to, 
unless in case of a very valuable negative, for it must 
never be forgotten that, though the printing density is 
reduced, the tonality is not corrected. 

Due to the developer, are easily removed by Edwards' Yellow 
clearing solution, which we have found most effectual stains. 

^t Sulphate of iron | iii. 

Alum . . . . ..31. 

Citric acid . . . . . . . 3 i. 

Water O i. 

Are due to dust in camera or slide, or to using the Trans - 
<c hypo " bath too long. If the spots have sharply denned parent 
edges, they are due to air bubbles forming at the begin- 8 P ts - 
ning of development. 

This is a bug-bear we have had little experience of, Halation, 
though we have taken many interiors. The only occasion 


1 78 Naturalistic Photography. 

on which we met with it was once when the plate was over- 
exposed on a stained glass window, containing much blue 
in it. If a large stop be used, and the exposure kept 
as short as possible, our experience is that no halation 
need occur. If, however, the student fears it, and there 
is always a danger of it where any bright lights act 
on the film, he should, with a squegee and some glyce- 
rine, apply a piece of some dark tissue to the back of the 
plate ; this is easily stripped off before development. 

Defects All plates should be kept in a dry place, and whilst 

dam* travelling it is as well to keep them in tinfoil. The 
effect of damp is to produce patches, which either do 
not develop at all or develop unequally. 

Removal This is easily done by putting the plate into hot me- 
8 ' thylated spirit, and rubbing the varnish off with cotton 

Sea air. It has been said that sea air affects gelatine plates, 
this has not been our experience. 

Dirty The backs of the negatives which are generally dirty, 

should be cleaned by scraping, and then rubbing up with 
a rag moistened in hot water, or preferably, methylated 
spirit. The negatives should be kept in a dry place, in 
grooved cardboard boxes. Wooden boxes should not be 
used for storing either plates or negatives. 

Marblings. Are due to a dirty fixing bath ; or to an uneven action 
of the developer arising from not rocking the plate, or 
to adding the alkali to the developer in the dish and not 
thoroughly mixing them before putting in the plate. 
The clearing solution removes some of these. 

Prolonged Due to the alum bath being used before " fixing" in 
pl a * es from which the developer has not been thoroughly 
washed. It can be remedied by washing and swilling 
the plate in water just rendered alkaline by ammonia, 
and then fixing as before. We once had a plate which 
took several hours to fix even after this treatment. 

Limpet- We have had these appear in a few negatives some 

shell months after development. We know of no remedy for 
the defect ; nor do we know the cause, but believe it to 
be due to hyposulphite of soda left in the film. 

Deposit cm rphis ig some ti m es met with after the imperfect washing 

Development. 1 79 

out of hyposulphite of soda ; or sometimes whilst the 
negative is in the fixing bath, if it has been in the alum 
bath previously, and not thoroughly washed. Sulphur 
is deposited. The remedy is obvious. 

Coloured metallic-looking patches appear at times Metallic 
near the edges of the plate, which may, or may not, be P atclies - 
accompanied with fog. We have often observed these 
patches in plates which have been kept a long time. 
There is no remedy if they are unaccompanied by fog, 
but if fog is present, the ferric-chloride solution will 
generally remove them. 

On the back of the negative show as dark lines in the Scratches 

Rarely, we have met with small patches which seem Unde- 

to have refused to develop : they are generally circular. y^Pfd 
^I^-AI xi 1 i islands. 

Captain Abney says they are due to the use or chrome 

alum in the emulsion. There does not appear to be any 
remedy for this accident. 

In one batch of plates we were greatly troubled by Dull spots 
these faults, one of the plates being covered with pits and P its - 
as thickly as if it had been peppered with a pepper-box. 
Captain Abney says they are due to the use of gelatine 
which contains grease. They ruined a whole series 
of fine negatives for us once. These complete the 
enumeration of the accidents likely to occur during 

We shall now presume that the student has thoroughly Varnish- 
dried his negatives, after having developed them. Before in S- 
storing them, however, he must varnish them, to protect 
them from scratches, and especially from damp, for 
gelatine, being very hygroscopic, easily absorbs moisture. 
At times, when warming an apparently perfectly dry 
negative over a flame, preparatory to varnishing it, a 
slight steam can be seen to arise, due to the evaporation 
of the moisture in the film. This moisture in the gelatine 
would of course in time lead to decomposition, and ruin 
the image ; for these reasons, then, all negatives should 
be varnished. Before " varnishing " each negative should 
be carefully brushed over with a cameFs-hair brush. Now 
it is obvious that many of the varnishes used are more or 

N 2 

i So Naturalistic Photography. 

Dr. Carey ] ess non-actinic, as Dr. Carey Lea has proved ; he, there- 
ni^h 8 r " f re > recommends the following : 

^ Bleached lac 3 x. 

Picked sandarac . . . . . . 3 v. 

Alcohol J xii. 

Let the lac dissolve in the alcohol, then filter, first soak- 
ing the filter paper with alcohol. Pour slowly, and if 
necessary at the end add 1 5 more of alcohol to enable 
the rest to pass. Next add the sandarac to the filtrate 
and refilter, using of course a fresh filter. 

Warm the plate gently, and, holding it in the left- 
hand bottom corner between the thumb and finger, pour 
a pool of varnish on to the plate that will cover about 
one-third the area of the plate, then let it run to the right- 
hand top corner, then to the left-hand top corner, then 
to the thumb, and finally drain off at the right-hand 
bottom corner into a filter. Then place it on a drainage 
rack, till just set, when re warm by the fire, otherwise it 
does not set hard and smooth. 

Boiler Since paper negatives and a roller slide were suggested 

by Fox Talbot, and made fit for use by Blan quart- Evrard, 
several ingenious persons have been trying to improve 
upon these early attempts. From time to time, during 
the last fifty years, various workers have announced old 
ideas as new discoveries, nor have these been confined to 
roller slides and paper negatives, but extended to many 
other photographic processes. That no one can claim any 
originality of discovery on this head since Talbot and 
Evrard is obvious ; only perfected methods can be 
claimed. There have been many of these introduced, 
but none worth discussing until that offered by the 
Messrs. Walker and Eastman. They have perfected 
Talbot's and Evrard's work, and though they have 
numerous imitators, their work is facile princeps. 
Paper Now the student will naturally expect us to give an 

es ' opinion on these paper negatives. For many photo- 
graphic processes they are of course invaluable, but for 
artistic work our opinion is that they are not equal to 
the ordinary method. These remarks apply equally to 

Development. 1 8 1 

the various flexible films which have lately been intro- 

For hand cameras, we should think, film negatives 
would be very useful, and for small studies such as they 
produce, would do well ; but then such are not pictures. 
A picture must be perfect in all points, and for this 
reason the films will not as yet answer. They do show 
grain, say what people will ; we have examined dozens 
of the very best, and that is our opinion. Besides 
this, they are liable to the defects common to paper, 
such as transparent spots, and the defects common 
to films, such as markings and stains, and in addition 
to all this there is the liability to injury of the nega- 
tive after development, in the subsequent processes 
of oiling and stripping, if stripping films be used. The 
quality, too, of the picture is not equal to that of an ordi- 
nary negative. Why it is so we cannot explain. What the 
future of these processes may be we do not pretend to 
say, but for the present we feel assured that the finest 
quality of work is to be obtained on a glass support. 
For ordinary touring purposes no doubt the roller-slide 
and flexible films have every advantage, but with any but 
the art side of the question we have nothing to do. In 
artistic work, all hap- hazard results or accidental effects 
must be carefully eliminated. Lightness, printing from 
either side, and a good retouching basis are no considera- 
tions for the artist, he wants none of these things. 

There still remains, however, a very important point Ortho- 
from the art point of view, as regards tonality, for as the ^ 
student who has read his chemistry knows, the different g rap hy. 
parts of the spectrum act differently on the different ha- 
loids. The effect of this has been to destroy true tonality, 
thus a yellow flower comes out black if taken on ordi- 
nary plates. To remedy this dyes have been used which 
absorb the weakly acting rays, and thus has been made one 
of the greatest advances in photography, both scientifically 
and artistically. This ortho-chromatic photography has 
engaged the attention of experts, and Abney, Vogel, 
Eder, Ives, Bothamley, and Edwards are hard at work 
upon it now, besides many amateur scientists. We have 

1 82 Naturalistic Photography. 

been for some time experimenting in this direction for 
artistic purposes, having begnn with Tailfer's plates 
before any others were introduced into the English 
market. For the photographing of pictures Messrs. Dixon 
and Grey conclusively proved the superiority of the process 
by their exhibits at the Exhibition of the Photographic 
Society of Great Britain, in 1886. But the matter is diffe- 
rent when landscapes and portraits from, life have to be 
considered. It is with the wonderful protean aspects of 
nature that we have to deal when working from nature, 
and we feel the question is not one to be entirely settled in 
the laboratory. Our method is always to work out of doors, 
noting, as far as possible, the conditions and judging the 
results by the prints, and though such experiments are 
far from conclusive, we can at present say that the 
ortho- chromatic plates are nearly correct in the rendering 
of tonality, but not perfect, the reds overrun the other 
colours, and are too strongly rendered. In fact, the reds 
and greens are not perfectly rendered, and even if the 
correct values of the spectrum are rendered in a labora- 
tory, this will not and does not give the relative tones 
of nature. This is the point which must be remedied. 
Undoubtedly ortho-chromatic photography alone will be 
used in the near future, but just at present it is not cut- 
and-dried enough for all practical purposes. The student, 
however, must use these plates. They are- supplied by 
B. J. Edwards ; and Dr. Vogel's eoside of silver plates 
can be bought of Gotz, 19, Buckingham Street, Strand. 
So far the truest tonality that we have seen has been 
obtained on Dr. Vogel's plates, and in addition his land- 
scape plates require no yellow screen to be used with 
them, which is a tremendous advantage. 

Thus it will be seen that in every operation the art- 
knowledge of the operator will tell. For example, let 
us suppose a camera set up with the lens fixed, before a 
beautiful landscape composed on the ground-glass screen 
by an artist, then let us imagine that two photographers 
proceed to take plates of the picture. After the very first 
operation of focussing, stopping and adjusting the swing- 
backs ; a mighty gulf will separate the two pictures ; the 

Development. 183 

gulf widens as the exposure is made, and finally in the 
developed plates they are no longer the same thing. 
One may be a sharp, common-place fact, false in many 
parts, the other may be full of truth and poetry. 
Let a print be taken from each plate and presented 
to an artistically uneducated craftsman and to an artist, 
the craftsman will go into raptures over the sharp 
craftsman picture, the artist will do the same over the 
artistic picture, but the artist will not look for a moment 
at the craftsman's ideal, and this little matter any one 
can prove for himself. Let the student, then, strive to 
earn the artist's praise, and let him ignore the craftsman's, 
and value his opinion on these matters at the same price 
he would value his opinions upon any other subject where 
taste and refinement are called into question. 

iS 4 

Naturalistic Photography. 



Defini- RETOUCHING is the process by whicli a good, bad, or in- 
re " different photograph is converted into a bad drawing or 


up in 
im no- 
ch. ome, 
oils, &c. 


Theoretically, retouching may be considered admis- 
sible, that is if the impression can be made more true 
by it. There are, perhaps, half a dozen painters in the 
world who could do this, but no one else. Nature is far 
too subtle to be meddled with in this manner. We 
have discussed the question with many artists, and their 
verdict is the same as ours. It is the common plea of 
photographers that photography exaggerates the shadows, 
but we think it has been shown that if photography is 
properly practised, no such exaggeration of shadows 
takes place, and if it did, retouching would only add to 
the falsity in another way. This retouching and paint- 
ing over a photograph by incapable hands, by whom it 
is always done, is much to be deprecated. The result is 
but a hybrid, and is intolerable to any artist. One fatal 
fact in all painted photographs, and one which for ever 
keeps them without the realm of art, is that the 
shadows, being photographic, are black and not filled with 
reflected colour as in nature and as in good oil painting. 
The same remark applies to mechanically-coloured 
photographs. Such abominations, from an art point 
of view may, however, be useful in the trades, for pat- 
tern plates and such things. Consider for a moment 
the habit of working up in crayon, monochrome, water- 
colour and oils. What does it mean ? and how is it 
done ? In some establishments the practice is for a 

Retouching Negatives, 1 8 5 

clerk to note down certain of the sitter's characteristics, 
such as " hair light, eyes blue, necktie black ; " these 
remarks are senfc with a photograph, generally an en- 
largement, to the artist ! He, in a conventional and 
crude manner, makes necessarily a travesty of the por- 
trait, and for these abominations the customer pays from 
5Z. to 20Z. Consider the utter sham and childishness of 
the whole proceeding, and remember that a portrait 
painter of the greatest ability can only paint with the 
model actually before him, yet these workers-up, who are 
riot artists at all, can paint from memoranda made by a 
clerk. It is astonishing to think there are people in the 
world foolish enough to pay for such trash. Even the 
very best oil painting done in such a way is but trash, and if 
the photographic base is so destroyed or covered over that 
none of it shows, it must then be judged on the grounds 
of monochrome drawing or painting as the case may be, 
and a sad thing it is when judged on these grounds. It 
may be said, " But painters paint posthumous portraits/' Posthu- 
Yes, they do, confiding public, but they paint them as aits 
sculptors model posthumous busts, but they do not call and busts. 
them works of art. We know several artists who are 
compelled by necessity and the vanity of human nature 
to execute these posthumous portraits, and we know, too, 
how they value such work. But it must not be forgotten 
what a gulf separates able artists from the third-rate 
" workers-up " for photographers. Moreover, true artists 
never attempt posthumous portraits on the top of a 
photograph, but simply use the photograph as a guide 
for modelling, light and shade, &c., a quite legitimate 
use, both for painter and sculptor. The Photographic Phot. Soc. 
Society of Great Britain is to be congratulated on the Great 
stand it has made in the matter by not hanging any of B 
these abominations on their walls, and it is to be hoped 
they will stand firm and never admit coloured photo- 
graphs of any kind until the great problem of photo- 
graphy in natural colours be solved. 

We have amongst photographers to-day persons who " High 
pride themselves on their skill in taking out of a photo- A ^' 
graph double chins, wrinkles, freckles, and all the cha- g ra ptiers. 

1 86 Naturalistic Photography. 

racter of a face, and who call themselves, we believe, 
" high art photographers," mere flatterers of mankind's 
weaknesses are they, not even honest craftsmen. And 
not only do they thus mutilate portraits, but with their 
Chinese white and Indian ink will they, with all the con- 
fidence of the uneducated, touch up a landscape or a face 
with no model before them. Of tonality of course they 
never beard, and Nature they never knew. It was once 
our lot to judge the pictures at a Cambridge photogra- 
phic exhibition, and we were not a little staggered by 
the audacity with which one noted "London firm" had 
touched up and worked upon an opal enlargement of 
Niagara Falls. The picture was very true and beautiful 
before those vandals had got hold of it, but, great Ceesar ! 
what a sight it was afterwards, with its impasto of Chinese 
white, and its shiny gum polished, India ink deepened 
shadows ! In short, a more meretricious production it 
has seldom been our lot to inspect, and this thing was 
exhibited by an University undergraduate ! If such is 
the taste of an educated man, what can one expect from 
the rest of the world ! Let, then, the student avoid all 
these meretricious productions as he would all vulgari- 
ties, such as eating his peas with his knife. No first- 
rate artist will allow his prints to be retouched ; he would 
Origin of never be able to bear the look of them afterwards. That 
retouch- foe idea of retouching springs from a wrong theory is evi- 
dent, the improper use of lenses gave false drawing, and 
people were in artistically and sharply photographed, so 
that wrinkles, warts, freckles, and even the port s of the 
skin showed, and then arose the demand for a retoucher to 
correct all that, and one error led to another, although, 
without doubt, the false work of a retoucher is much 
truer than the false work of an uneducated operator. 
Certainly people do not see, at the distance a photograph 
is taken from, the wrinkles, spots, and other small ble- 
mishes, and they are too uneducated to see the falseness of 
tone which retouching engenders. Of all the photogra- 
phers who talk glibly of art, we warrant scarcely one is 
able to distinguish between a bust carved by a stone- 
mason, one carved by a mediocre sculptor, and one carved 

Retouching Negatives. 187 

by a master, in fact we have proved this, and yet they 
talk, talk, write, and lecture on art ; while to an artist 
the difference between each o those three busts is as 
great as the difference between a mountain, a hillock, 
and a marsh. The public see the warts and spots and 
call them false, the greater falsity of tone and retouch- 
ing they cannot distinguish. An etcher once remarked 
to us, " How is it photographers seem to do everything 
to make photographs anything but photographs ? " And 
such is the case; the matchless beauty of a pure and 
artistic photograph does not satisfy their vulgar minds, 
and yet such is the only kind of photograph at which 
artists will look. 

It is now fifty years since Daguerre publicly announced Artists on 
Niepce's discoveries, and on the scientific and industrial yetouch- 
side, photography has results to show nothing short of u 
marvellous, but what has it to show on the artistic side ? 
Of the thousands who have practised photography since 
1839, and who are now dead, how many names, stand 
out as having done work of any artistic value ? Only 
three. One a master, who was at the same time a sculp- 
tor, namely, Adam Salomon ; one a trained painter, but 
without first-rate artistic ability, Bejlander ; and one, an 
amateur, Mrs. Cameron. Beside these three there is 
no name among the numerous dead photographers worth 
a mention. And have matters improved ? Well may 
it be asked by those who have the good of photography 
at heart, whether it will always be thus. We hope 
not ; but if it is to be otherwise, some radical change 
must be made, and the blind no longer lead the 
blind. We have said, then, that of all the thousands 
of craftsmen who have practised photography and are 
dead, three names only stand out as having produced 
works to which we can apply the title artistic. Now 
let us see what those three have to say to the matter of 

Mr. Adam Salomon, though he strengthened certain Adam 
parts of his negatives by artificial means, which in the Salomon - 
hands of an accomplished artist like himself, was ad- 
missible, condemned retouching altogether. He says, 

1 88 Naturalistic Photography. 

" Eschewing retouching with brush or pencil on the 
film, risking the further deterioration of the negative, I 
make light finish the task it has, from want of time, or 
bad quality, insufficiently done, and in such a manner 
that no hand can hope to rival its delicacy and precision, 
and this is the only plan that a lover of his calling can 
justifiably pursue." So we see that a highly-trained 
sculptor, like Adam Salomon, dared not retouch, but 
only sunned down violent contrasts at first, and then 
printed in all the picture, so that it could not be de- 
tected ; yet Adam Salomon, in our opinion, could have 
quite legitimately worked on his negatives, being as he 
was a highly-trained artist. 

lander Rejlander, not being a painter of great ability, but 

having a painter's training, tried all metiiods until he 
arrived at the legitimate scope of photography, then he 
came to the conclusion that retouching was inadmissible, 
and it must be remembered that Rejlander was more 
capable of retouching truthfully than any retoucher has 
been since, and yet he says, "I think the practice of 
retouching the negative a sad thing for photography. 
It is impossible, for even very capable artists, to rival or 
improve the delicate, almost mysterious gradations of 
the photograph. Magnify the photographic rendering 
of, say, the human eye, with a strong lens, and it is 
found to be almost startling in its marvellous trut'T. 
Magnify the retouched image, and it will look like 
coarse deformity. It ceases to be true. I have some- 
times seen a touched photograph which looked very 
nice, but it possessed no interest for me ; I knew it 
could not be trusted. I have been charged with sophis- 
ticating photographs because I combined and masked 
and sunned prints. But there is a great distinction 
between suppressing .and adding; I never added. I 
stopped-out portions of the negatives which I did not 
require to form my picture; I sunned down that which 
was obtrusive, and where one negative would not serve, 
1 used two or more, joining them with as much truth as 
I could. But I never attempted to improve negatives. 
1 never believed that I could draw better or more truly 

Retouching Negatives. 189 

than Nature. I consider a touched photograph spoiled 
for every purpose." This, then, was Rejlander's verdict, 
and though from this we gather he had not yet thrown off 
the fallacy of combination-printing, yet he subsequently- 
abjured that also. Even when he did use combination- 
printing, he practised it in a manner never equalled by 
his imitators, for like all imitators they have copied the 
bad qualities and left all the genius behind. 

Mrs. Cameron, the last and least of the three, had Mrs. J. 
knowledge and feeling enough also to eschew retouching, ^am-ron. 
none of her work is retouched, just as she had know- 
ledge enough to use a rapid rectilinear lens, although 
working in the wet-collodion days, for she evidently saw 
what escaped so many other workers, that the drawing 
was truer with that lens than with the quicker portrait 

When it comes, by the means of retouching, to straight- 
ening noses, removing double chins, eliminating squints, 
fattening cheeks, and smoothing skins, we descend to 
an abyss of charlatanism and jugglery, which we will 
not stop to discu s. That such things pay and please 
vain and stupid people, no one denies, but so do contor- 
tionists please a certain public, so do jugglers and 
tight-rope dancers, and such like, but all that is not 

There are various practices of doctoring the negative Doctoring 
by using paint and other mediums on the backs, or by ne g atlves - 
grinding the backs of the negatives. These are, in our 
opinion, all unnecessary and harmful, the remarks on 
retouching apply equally well here. Such artifices may 
easily deceive and even please the uneducated, but the 
artist only sees them to despise and condemn them. 
The technique of photography is perfect, no such botchy 
aids are necessary, they take the place of the putty of 
the bad carpenter. 

Of course, spotting does not come under the head of Spotting, 
retouching. The spotter does not attempt to modify 
structure or tone, but merely to render an unavoidable 
and accidental " blemish " less patent. All spots should be 
tilled with red paint mixed with a little gum and water, 

190 Naturalistic Photography. 

but care must be exercised in this operation, to put on 
only just enough paint to fill the hole. 

Our parting injunction, then, to the photographer who 
would be an artist, is, avoid retouching in all its forms ; 
it destroys texture and tone, and therefore the truth of 
the picture. 



HAVING his negative, the next thing our student will want The 
to do is to print from it ; but before doing so, it will be process, 
necessary to decide upon the process he will use. 

This is a question of great moment, and one which will 
here be considered on purely artistic grounds. When silver 
first we began photography, we printed in all sorts of prints, 
ways ; but silver printing, on account chiefly of its un- 
pleasant glaze, was soon discarded. Then we prepared 
some ordinary drawing paper, and printed on that, till 
one day we saw an album of views printed in platinotype. Platino- 
Their beauty acted like a charm, and straightway we took ^P 6 ' 
to platinotype. Still we felt that for portraiture, a red 
colour gave a truer impression. So we tried carbon, and ar on ' 
practised it when necessary. Even now, when we look 
back on those days, we remember the intense pleasure 
carbon printing gave us. In the year 1882, when we first Piatino- 
exhibited at Pall Mall, we sent four platinotype prints, types. 
and two silver prints. At that exhibition there were only 
three other exhibits in platinotype. Immediately after 
that exhibition we determined to give up all methods of 
printing except platinotype, and we have since steadily 
by example and precept advocated that process. When 
we were brought into contact with artists, and learned 
something of art, we knew the reason of what we had 
instinctively felt to be true. And now, after much ex- 
perience and careful examination, in many cases in 
company with able artists, of all the printing papers and 
processes to-day employed, we emphatically assert that 
the platinotype process is facile princeps. We should 

192 Naturalistic Photography. 

maintain this, even if platinotypes were no more per- 
manent than silver prints, but here again, as in all good 
things, simplicity of manipulation goes with excellency, 
for there is no doubt that platinotypes are permanent, they 
will last in good condition as long as the paper on which 
they are printed. This fact alone would finally place the 
process at the head of the list. Since the introduction of the 
platinotype process various papers have been introduced 
into the market, with unglazed surfaces, for which the 
quality of permanency has been claimed. Several of 
these are old methods re-dressed, as the gelatino-bromide 
and chloride papers. But are these papers permanent ? 
At any rate they do not give any truer tonality than silver 
prints, and this is a fatal drawback. We have examined 
hundreds of prints on gelatino-bromide and chloride 
paper, and they all give false tonality as compared with 
Fading platinotype. The gelatino-bromide paper like all silver 
af prints. print^ whether matt or glazed, is false in tonality, the 
blacks are too black, and the whole picture lowered in 
tone. Then, again, as to the question of permanency, it is of 
course incontestable that silver prints fade, and as regards 
the gelatino-bromide paper, experiment has not proved 
it to be permanent. This is what a chemist, Mr. A. 
S^ill r n ^piller, says in the Year Book of Photography and 
gelatine- 11 Photographic News for 1888 ; writing on "Bromide versus 
bromide albumenized paper,'' he says, " From the above consi- 
prints. derations it may fairly be conceded that under the same 
conditions a bromide print will most likely remain intact 
longer than an albumenized paper print; but more than 
this, I am afraid, with the evidence at present at hand, 
we are not in a position to state. In offering this, it 
must be understood, that only under equally favourable 
circumstances is the bromide process likely to yield 
results more permanent than that on albumenized paper, 
for just as a gelatine plate or silver print fades when the 
' hypo ' fixer has been imperfectly removed, so again in 
the bromide process, if insufficient washing after fixing 
be resorted to, the resulting photograph cannot be 
expected to last long." 

Such was the opinion of every photographer who 

Printing. 193 

had thought the matter out, but we give Mr. Spiller's 
opinion since it is that of a specialist in chemistry. In 
conjunction with a noted landscape-painter we went care- 
fully into this question of the different printing- processes, 
for a book we were conjointly engaged upon was to b 
illustrated by photographs from our negatives. We soon 
determined, on artistic grounds, that there was nothing 
that could compete with platinotype. Before deciding, 
however, we wrote to a leading producer of gelatino- 
bromide papers, asking him if he could guarantee the 
permanency of prints on this paper. When the answer 
came it was evasive and unaccompanied by any guaran- 
tee. These gelatino-bromide papers are to be met with 
under different names, and though for certain trade or 
industrial purposes they may be invaluable, for artistic 
purposes they are inferior to platinotype. Carbon, though 
superior to silver printing, is still inferior to platinotype, 
for even when the glaze is got rid of, the method of the 
formation of the image, being sculpturesque, gives a 
falsity of appearance and an unnatural running together 
(like melted wax) of portions of the detail. 

There is, then, in our opinion, for the art student, but 
one process in which to print, and that is the platinotype 
process discovered by Mr. Willis. Every photographer Mr. Willis, 
who has the good and advancement of photography at 
heart, should feel indebted to Mr. Willis for placing 
within his power a process by which he is able to produce 
work comparable, on artistic grounds, with any other 
black and white process. We have no hesitation in 
saying that the discovery and subsequent practice of this 
process has had an incalculable amount of influence in. 
raising the standard of photography. No artist could rest 
content to practise photography alone as an art, so long 
as such inartistic printing methods as the pre-platino- 
type processes were in vogue. If the photo-etching pro- 
cess and the platinotype process were to become lost arts, 
we, for our part, should never take another photograph. 

But here it is necessary to warn the student against 
the remarks of the platinotype company and many of 
their admirers, who maintain that for good prints 



Naturalistic Photography. 



"plucky" negatives are necessary; and then follows the 
old story about " fire," " snap/'' " sparkle/' and Co. As we 
have already despatched that gang", we will spend no more 
time over their funeral. For low-toned effects, and for 
grey-day land scapes, the platinotype process is unequalled, 
but the " fire/' " snap/' ( ' sparkle " company think such 
effects bad, weak, muddy, and what not. Of course, the 
student will listen to nothing of this, but try for himself, 
and when he wants advice, let him ask it of good artists. 
We once showed a grey- day effect to a clerk at the 
Platinotype Company's Office, having previously had the 
opinion of some first-rate painters upon it; the clerk 
looked at it critically and said, " Yes, very nice ; but look 
at this," and he took us to a frame hanging in the same 
room and pointed to a commonplace view, taken with a 
small stop in bright sunlight a view, we believe, of a 
church or something of that kind ; there was his ideal of 
what a platinotype should be. The print in question was 
about fit for a house-agent's window. No ! Platinotype 
prim ers do not seem to know what a good thing they have. 
Their paper is as suitable and as beautiful for soft grey- 
day effects as for brilliant sunshiny effects, and it is to 
be hoped they will soon have their eyes opened to this fact, 
and cease to encourage the false notion that good, ergo 
plucky, sparkling, snappy negatives are those required 
for the use of the paper. The process, however, is not 
perfect, the only perfect printing process being photo- 
etching, as we shall show presently ; but of all the 
processes for printing from the negative it is the best ; of 
all the typographic processes it is the best; and it is 
better than many of the copperplate processes. 

Since writing this chapter, Mr. Willis has introduced a 
great improvement in his process, by which the print can be 
developed with a cold solution; but what is far more impor- 
tant, artistically speaking, the development can be con- 
trolledjfor the developer can be applied with a brush, so that 
parts can be intensified or kept back at will, and "sinking- 
in " is avoided. This is a great and distinct advance. 

The Ferro-Prussiate printing process, of course, does 
not concern us, blue prints are only for plans, not for art. 

Printing. 195 

Oar printing process, then, is to be platinotype and 
platinotype only, and as there is no use in swelling this 
work with facts already published, we advise every stu- 
dent to get full directions from the Platinotype Company, 
29, Southampton Row, High Holborn, London, and to 
study them carefully. It is advisable to arrange the Hints for 
printing so that you are not compelled to keep the paper 
any time ; get it fresh when required, therefore, and only 
as much as you require for immediate use. Before put- 
ting it in the box, drive all the moisture out of the 
calcium-chloride by heating it on a shovel, or old tray, 
over the fire, and dry the box thoroughly before the 
fire. Dry also all the printing frames thoroughly before 
a fire, also the rubbers, the use of which must not be 
neglected. Be sure you mix the baths and developer with 
pure boiled distilled water only, or else you will be apt to 
find a fine powder on the prints. 

Be very careful not to place the prints in water between 
the washings. Above all, never use your dishes for any 
other purpose. Some photographers, living in the country, 
complain that they cannot get upheat to boil a large enough 
quantity of developer for 12 x 10 prints. We found an Lamps, 
excellent heating apparatus in the tin spirit lamps with 
treble wicks, supplied by Allen of Marylebone Lane, 
with his portable Turkish baths. With two of these 
lamps we had no difficulty in heating a developer for 
24 x 22 prints. The dish can be supported by blocks 
of wood at the four corners, and raised to the height 
required by other blocks, or a tripod. The prints when 
taken from the washing water should be dried on a clean 
sheet, and are finally improved by pressing with a warm 
iron. For spotting, India ink is the most suitable Spotting. 
medium. This, it is said, is permanent, and any shade 
can be got, but good India ink, like many other articles 
of trade, is a rare thing. 

There are different kinds of paper sold by the Platino- Text ure of 
type Company for printing, and the printer will of pa] 
course choose the texture of paper that suits his subject. 
Delicate landscapes and small portraits should be printed 
on the smooth papers, while for strong effects, large figure 

o 2 

Naturalistic Photography. 

subjects, and large portraits full of character, the rough 
Colour. papers are more suitable. The charcoal grey tint of or- 
dinary platinotypes is apt to become monotonous in book 
illustration, and it is as well to vary it occasionally by using" 
the sepia tints; these are quite suitable for landscapes 
and certain figure subjects. Directions are given by the 
company for producing 1 this colour. A great desideratum 
is a red colour for portraiture, and it is to be hoped that 
Mr. Willis will see his way to producing a paper on 
which prints in what is called "Bartolozzi red" can be 
obtained. Eed, though it does not give such true ton- 
ality, gives a truer impression of flesh and texture, just as 
sepia often gives a truer impression of certain kinds of 
landscape. But of course these tints must be used with 
judgment, and no one but a vandal would print a landscape 
in red, or in cyanotype. Having now disposed of the 
question of the printing process to be used, we must dis- 
cuss some of the details incidental to printing. 
Tignet- Whoever introduced the practice of vignetting was no 
tin - artist, and the " dodge " was evolved from a misconcep- 

tion of the aims of art, or for commercial purposes. Its 
origin is obvious, the idea was taken from one of the 
incomplete methods of artistic expression, such as chalk 
drawing. In such methods the artist has a perfect right 
to leave the background untinted, or only to shade round 
the head so as to give it relief, but with a perfect 
technique like photography, vignetting is useless, nay 
inartistic and false, as it destroys all tonality. We 
get by this method a softly delicately lighted head, 
against a sparkling background, the two are incompa- 
tible, and not only that, but the photographer who 
vignettes is deliberately throwing away a most effective 
aid to perfect impression, namely, the relief effected by 
the reflected light from his background, and when you 
add to this the conventional shape of the vignetted head 
and shadows, the result is feeble in the extreme. Here, 
then, is another false god which has for years held 
sway. We ask the student, did he ever see a vignette 
painted by Da Vinci, Rembrandt, Holbein, Velasquez, 
Gainsborough, or Frank Hals ? Such men knew too 
well the value of a background to throw it away ; they 

Printing. 197 

could not have painted a vignetted Lead. Look at their 
chalk drawings, and the case is very different; there they 
were dealing with an incomplete method, and kept 
rigidly within their bounds. In our early photographic 
days, we learned printing from an industrial photo- 
grapher, who did an extensive business in vignetted 
heads, and it was a source of great amusement to us to 
watch the mechanical application of the vignettes by the 
" head " printer. This is of course another source of the 
mechanical appearance of ordinary photographs; for by 
vignetting fifty different heads a certain uniformity must 
result, as in a regiment dressed in uniform, with of 
course the fatal result, the loss of all individuality, 
character, and of course art. The few photographic 
portraits that we have seen worth studying were 
certainly not vignetted. Mrs. Cameron did not vignette, 
she knew better. That people demand vignettes and 
pay for them is nothing to us, let photographers sell 
them as they do scraps and chromographs, and other 
fancy articles, if it please the childish and vulgar, 
but let them not be called works of art, for on the con- 
trary they are certain indices of bad taste. Vignetting 
might be admissible in certain decorative cases in book 
illustration, as when a landscape decorates an initial 
letter, but in pictures for framing, never. 

The simplest application of this method is the printing Combina- 
of a cloud into a landscape from a different negative. tio . n . 
Though it is far preferable to obtain the clouds on pri 
the same negative, and this is quite easy in ortho- 
chromatic photography, it is, if you use great judgment, 
admissible to print in clouds from a separate negative, 
but this requires an intimate knowledge of out-door 
effects, and the clouds must be taken in a particular 
way. Printing in clouds is admissible because, if well 
done, a truer impression of the scene is rendered. But Cloud 
the ordinary way of taking cloud negatives is much negatives. 
to be condemned. The practice is to point the 
camera to the zenith if need be, to focus sharply, to 
to use the smallest stop, develop and select for final use 
according to the lighting, indeed, not always being 
very particular on that point. But, by elevating the 

1 98 Naturalistic Photography. 

camera a point of sight is taken different from that 
employed in taking the landscape ; by focussing sharply, 
often using a lens drawing falsely, the clouds are rendered 
false in tone and false in drawing. All this an artist detects 
in a moment, a craftsman, never. The first necessity, 
then, in taking cloud negatives is that the point of sight 
shall be the same as that chosen for the landscapes ; the 
second that the clouds shall be so focussed and developed 
that their tonality shall remain true ; and the third and 
most important point, that the cloud form shall be harmo- 
nious with the landscape. The very simplest truths of 
nature are daily ignored by photographers in the works 
they exhibit. There are often three, or even four suns in 
one landscape, or at least the evidence of them ; mighty 
cumuli float over lakes where there is no ripple, and yet 
there is no reflection ; or, as we have seen, reflections of 
clouds have been printed in where there are ripple marks ; 
or heavy nimbi lighted from one direction are placed over 
cirro-cumuli lighted from another direction ; or, again, a 
setting sun sinks to rest over wave-broken water that 
reflects glints of light from exactly the opposite direction. 

How to The best way, then, if a cloud negative is wanted, 

clouds. i s t t a k e it at the same time as the landscape and 
from the same point of view, getting as much as possible 
the same impression as seen in nature. The ex- 

To print posure must of course be by a shutter set quickly. 

in clouds. We think the best way of printing in clouds so 
obtained, is to take a piece of damp tissue paper 
the size of the negative, gum it round the edges to 
the back of the negative, then with some blacklead 
and a stump blacken the sky out when the paper is 
dry, carefully following the contours of those objects 
which stand in relief against the sky with a lead pencil. 
In this way you can with marvellous accuracy stop out the 
sky, and the work being on the back of the negative and 
in plumbago, the contours still show the mingled decision 
and indecision of nature. The print is then taken, 
and afterwards the cloud negative is arranged as desired, 
the sky-line being covered with cotton-wool and the rest 
of the exposed landscape by a black cloth. No special 
printing frames are required for this purpose, only one a 

Printing. 199 

size or two larger than the negative you are printing from. 
Cloud printing, as we have said, is the simplest form of 
combination printing, and the only one admissible when 
we are considering artistic work. B,ej lander, however, 
in the early days of photography, tried to make pictures printing, 
by combination printing. This process is really what 
many of us practised in the nursery; that is cutting out 
figures and pasting them into white spaces left for that 
purpose in a picture-book. With all the care in the world, 
the very best artist living could not do this satisfactorily. 
Nature is so subtle that it is impossible to do this sort of 
patchwork and represent her. Even if the greater truths 
be registered, the lesser truths, still important, cannot be 
obtained, and the softness of outline is entirely lost. 
The relation of the figure to the landscape can never be 
truly represented in this manner, for all subtle modelling 
of the contours of the figure are lost. Such things are 
easy enough to do, and when we first began photography 
we did a few, but soon gave it up, convinced of its futility. 
Rej lander, though he tried it, soon saw the folly of such Rejlan- 
play, and he is the only artist we know of who used it. ' 
Mrs. Cameron and Adam Salomon never indulged in such 
things that we know of. Some writers have honoured 
this method of printing by calling it the highest form of 
photographic work. Heaven help them ! The subject is 
hardly worth as many words, for though such " work " 
may produce sensational effects in photographic galleries, 
it is but the art of the opera bouffe. 

In printing, variously shaped masks are used. There Masks. 
is no objection to them, but in our opinion they do not in 
any way improve the subject, although they do not 
necessarily spoil it like vignetting. 

Besides all these "dodges," there are machines for 
producing imitation enamel portraits in basso-relievo 
and cavi-relievo, but all such ideas are false in theory, 
and the results inartistic hybrids unworthy of any serious 

Here, then, we come to an end of the subject of print- Final, 
ing, and in our opinion the student should consider 
himself fortunate indeed in having so beautiful a method 
as the platinotype process with which to work. 

2OO Naturalistic Photography. 



THE best enlargements made for the trade are made from 
very sharply-focussed negatives. In fact, some of the 
best enlargers take up the negative from which the 
enlargement is to be made, and examine it with a 
small magnifying-glass, and if any of the outlines are 
woolly they will not promise a good enlargement. This, 
then, shows that a small negative must be taken very 
sharply if it is to produce a good enlargement ; that is, 
it must be taken purely from that point of view, all 
artistic considerations being thrown aside. It is obvious, 
then, from what we have already said, that this is 
undesirable, for every negative should be suited to the 

Enlarging, too, of course increases all falseness in 
drawing ; if the drawing in the different planes is wrong 
in the small negative, it will be still worse in the large 
negative or print. 

But, it will be argued, and justly, that sometimes an 
enlargement is more artistic than the small picture from 
which it was produced. This is sometimes, but rarely, 
the case ; and when such is the case, it is the result of 
chance. You would never be able to take a negative in 
a particular way so that you know for certain it will be 
improved by enlarging so many diameters, and therein 
lies the inherent defect which unfits this process for 
artistic work. 

The actual process of enlarging is very simple, either 
by artificial light or daylight ; but it is in our opinion a 
needless and undesirable proceeding. 

Enlargements. 201 

We have made many experiments in this direction, 
but we have never yet been able to get an enlargement as 
fine in quality as the direct photograph. All the little 
subtleties which give quality to the work are either lost 
or are only obtained accidentally. Not long ago we An 
saw a beautiful portrait an enlargement, the print ^ 
from the small negative of which was very poor, and 
no one was more surprised at the improvement in the 
enlargement than the photographer himself, but he could 
never make sure of doing the same thing again. Therefore 
eschew enlargements. A picture of fine quality, quarter- 
plate size, is worth a dozen enlargements 24 x 22. 

It is only in certain very limited effects that the Tonality, 
tonality will be true after enlargement, and that of 
course constitutes another fatal objection. 


Naturalistic Photography. 






FOR industrial and educational purposes transparencies of 
all kinds are valuable, and we shalltouch upon them else- 
where. With lantern slides our art-student has nothing 
to do. A lantern picture is an optical illusion, and lantern 
slides are toys when they do not serve lecture purposes. 
For lecture purposes they are of course invaluable, but 
they have no place in art, neither have stereoscopic slides. 
They all rank with the camera obscura, the diorama, and 
the panorama. 

We say all this because a beginner must be cautioned 
against paying any serious attention to these subjects if 
his aim be to become an artist. Art is much too serious 
for her devotees to trifle with any other subject, and 
besides the making of lantern and stereoscopic slides 
is apt to have a bad effect on the beginner. His atten- 
tion becomes centered on the production of pretty things 
a neat, small, superficial prettiness pervading most of 
theworkof goodlantern-slide workers. Conventional com- 
positions and Birket-Foster prettiness are the lantern- 
slide maker's beau-ideals. Of course these qualities are 
very admirable for lantern slides, for without them, they 
would have but little attraction ; but they are quite 
distinct from, and very, very far removed from, having 
any connection with fine art. 

We know many artists who photograph and value 
photography per s0j but we have yet to meet that one 
who deigns to make lantern slides except for the 
purpose of making enlargements from which to draw. 
It has been said that the appearance of stereoscopic 

Transparencies ) Lantern& Stereoscopic Slides. 203 

pictures is wonderfully true; this is not the case. 
There is a lustre, false tonality, and apparent illusion, 
which to an artist makes them anything but true. In 
short, until photographers do away with much of the 
" play " of their art, and look at it seriously, they 
cannot hope that highly-trained artists will join in with 

For scientific lectures of course lantern slides are in- Lecture 
valuable, as we have already said, and for this purpose P ur P 08es - 
they should be untouched ; but we cannot help smiling 
when we hear of producers of slides claiming for their 
work the title of " artistic," because they are untouched 
and true. Absolute truth is not necessarily art, as we 
have often pointed out, and as Muybridge's photographs 

Let our student, then, avoid these snares, unless he 
wishes to cultivate what Professor Herkomer has aptly 
called " Handkerchief-box art." 


Natu ralis tic Photography. 








FROM our earliest photographic days we always felt that 
all a ordinary " printing methods, however good in them- 
selves, would finally have to give way to photo-mechanical 
methods, as all procepses are called by which the negative 
is reproduced. All the photo-mechanical printing pro- 
cesses may be divided into two great classes : 

A. Processes in which the aim is to produce diagrams. 

B. Processes in which the aim is to produce pictures. 
For the first purpose any of the methods are useful : 

that is, typographic processes, where the block is set up 
with the type in the printing-press ; the collotype process, 
where the prints are subsequently mounted on paper, or 
interleavedinabook; and the photo-etching process, where 
the plates are introduced between the leaves of a book. 

It is obvious that when the aim is diagrammatic, bril- 
liancy, sharpness, correct drawing, and the truthful render- 
ing of texture are the requisites, as in the reproductions 
of negatives from nature to illustrate scientific works, books 
of travel, &c. In such cases these are the main points to 
be considered; and when to these considerations is added 
the question of cost of production, it is evident nearly all 
the processes worth mentioning which are now in existence 
will serve one or other, or all such purposes. But when 
the question comes to be considered from an artistic point 
of view, the matter is totally different, for it is a sine 
qua non in this case that all the artistic quality of the 
original photograph be preserved. Cost must not be 
considered. From the art point of view alone, then, we 
shall briefly discuss these processes. As we said in a 
former chapter, of ordinary printing papers the platino- 

Photo- Mechanical Processes. 205 

type is alone worth considering for this purpose, but for 
book illustration a serious objection to its use is its 
monotony. For, although there are two colours, the char- 
coal grey and the sepia, the gamut of colour is very 
limited ; a serious matter this, for our experience leads 
us to believe that there is a particular colour and tint 
especially suitable to each subject. Another objection 
to all ordinary printing papers is the want of relief in the 
gelatine film of an ordinary negative, a want which gives 
a certain flatness in the resulting print, when compared 
with a print from a copperplate where the cavi-relievo is 
deeper. Relief in the block undoubtedly |has a great 
influence on all results, and in all ths photo-mechanical 
processes "depth" is an essential, and the best processes 
are those in which the printing-plates have the deepest 
surfaces. Another fact which renders platinotype less 
valuable than photogravure is that there is always a 
certain amount of " sinking in" of the image, as there 
is with a painting on canvas; but a painting can be 
brought up by varnish, a platinotype cannot. 1 

Let us, then, examine the various processes, and see 
which will serve our purpose. 

For artistic reasons we are of the opinion that Collo- j n e g " 
tvpes, Woodburytypes, and all such methods, are Woodbury 
undesirable ; and this we say deliberately, after long types, &c. 
study of the subject, for in supervising and choosing ^ able 
illustrations for the books which we have illustrated we 
carefully examined specimens of nearly all the photo- 
mechanical processes extant. We say this, although one 
writer on the subject of photo-mechanical processes has 
given out the opinion that the ideal process is one in 
which the resulting print shouldbe a facsimile of a "silver 
print ;" but of course such a remark is artistically wrong, 
and is in keeping with the rest of the compilation in 
which the statement appears. 

For the benefit of the student, then, we say there are but 
two processes to be considered for artistic book illustration Typo- 

a typographic block to be printed with the text, and an graphic 


1 This " sinking-in " is now scarcely appreciable with the new 
cold- bath process. 

206 Naturalistic Photography. 

intaglio copperplate. The typographic block has the 
whites lowered like a woodblock ; and as it is printed in 
the ordinary way, with the type, there is no extra trouble 
or cost in the printing. With a copperplate, on the other 
hand, the plate must be carefully inked and wiped, and 
each print separately pulled by hand, the difference in 
time taken by this process, and consequently the cost, is 
therefore greatly increased. 

After a careful examination of all the typographic pro- 
cesses we have no hesitation in saying that there is not 
one satisfactory in the market. When the original picture 
is not travestied and cheapened by mechanical-looking 
crenellations and stipplings, it is marred by obvious hand- 
work and by falsity of tonal translation. Any photo- 
mechanical process, to be perfect, must, as we have all 
along maintained, require no retouching of any kind. 
All the typographic blocks, too, are too shallow; hence 
in the rough working and pressure of the printing-press 
all tonal subtleties are lost in smudges, as the block 
becomes clogged with ink. Many of these blocks 
serve remarkably well for rough diagrammatic purposes, 
but for artistic purposes there is not one we can recom- 
mend when the object is to reproduce pictures taken 
from nature. For facsimile work they serve the purpose. 
A first-rate photo-mechanical block to print with the text 
in the ordinary printing-press, which is entirely the result 
of a chemical process, is a great desideratum, and it is a 
problem which experimenters in this direction will do 
well to study. Not only is it that there is no typographic 
block adequate, but in addition, when the present process 
is employed for diagrammatic purposes, or to satisfy the 
pictorial standards of the untrained in art, they are ter- 
ribly marred by crude retouchings and daubings with 
Chinese white, until such travesties of nature appear that 
are only to be equalled by some of the " finishing 
artists " of the photographic studio. Yet, bad as these 
block processes are, they are infinitely better than the 
second-rate woodcuts made from photographs. Day 
after day, books appear illustrated with woodcuts done 
from photographs, in which the woodcutter has effectually 

Photo-Mechanical Processes. 207 

ruined all the beauty of the photograph. If the student, 
then, should ever be in the position of having to choose 
between the facsimile woodcuts of English woodcutters 
and photo-mechanical block-work, let him choose the 
latter as the lesser evil ; it is better than any except the 
American school of facsimile woodcutters. And here it 
may be well to note a dishonest practice which is daily be- 
coming more common with writers of books of travel who 
buy photographs abroad, and unscrupulously have their 
books illustrated with them. We know of certain such illus- 
trations which are advertised as being prints from wood- 
blocks done from sketches by the author. Quite recently 
a book of travel appeared illustrated with third-rate 
woodcuts purporting to be done from sketches by the 
author, which were really done from photographs pur- 
chased in the shops abroad. We know of one case where 
this was done in England, the photographs pirated being 
English photographs. Should such a thing ever happen 
to the student, he must, as a duty to the photographic 
world, prosecute without compunction, and exact the 
utmost penalty of the law. Such dishonesty is one of 
the most despicable forms of thieving. 

But to return to our subject. As we have said, we Photo- 
felt from the first that photo-etching was the ultimate etchin - 
goal to be reached ; that was the final end and method 
of expression in monochrome photography. We argued 
the matter out with many painters, and they agreed with 
us, as did they agree that the process of reproduction must 
be the result of chemical changes only that no retouching 
was admissible, or a hybrid would be the result, and a hy- 
brid is detestable to all artists, although we have recently 
seen writers untrained in art matters advocating a photo- 
etched plate as a basis for etching or mezzotinting. 
Having decided, then, on these points, we determined to 
try the photo-etching processes of the various firms. On 
inquiring from the best English and French firms, we 
found that but very few, in most cases no landscapes 
from nature had been reproduced in this way, although 
a few portraits had been done. We carefully examined 
the specimens (nearly all specimens of facsimile work) of 

208 Naturalistic Photography* 

thirteen different firms; in fact, all the firms practising 
photo-etching that we could hear of. From this exami- 
nation it was evident that however good many of the 
processes were for facsimile work, but few were adapt- 
able to our needs. Having at last settled on the four 
apparently most suitable processes, we began our studies. 
Negatives were sent to each of these firms, of whom only 
one had ever attempted reproducing a landscape direct 
from a negative from nature. The proofs came, and were 
in every case most unsatisfactory ; they had all been bar- 
barously retouched, all the tonality had been falsified, 
faces against the sky were made lighter than the sky, faces 
were roughly outlined with an etching-needle, high lights 
were scraped away needlessly, and shadows barbarously 
deepened with the roulette. Our battles then began, 
and we demanded plates free from retouching ; the 
voluminous correspondence we had on the subject would 
afford amusement. Various firms protested it couldn't 
be done ; it was absurd ; was art the result of a chemical 
process ? and Heaven knows what ! However, we per- 
sisted with inflexibility, and though we had to accept 
in some cases the least visibly retouched plates, we finally 
gained the day all round, in so far that all the firms sup- 
plied us with plates with no visible retouching. Thus 
was instituted a new departure, negatives from nature 
were reproduced, through our battlings, with no visible 
retouching ; and although a few diagrammatic negatives 
had been reprodued here and there before us, we were the 
first to start the serious reproduction of negatives from 
landscapes and figure subjects which could be regarded 
as pictures per se, and not merely as topographical views. 
But now the coast is clear, and the stuuent can get his 
negatives done without visible retouching by asking for 
it. From an examination of these results it was soon 
Typogra- evident that one firm, the Typographic Etching Company, 
Etching produced plates immeasurably superior to those of any 
Com- other firm, and in addition, they would guarantee their 
pany's production without retouching. 

process. -^ QY reproducing negatives taken from nature, then, this 
process is perfect^ and we cannot see how any photo- 

Photo-Mechanical Processes. 209 

engraving process will ever surpass it. Mr. Dawson and Messrs. 
Mr. Colls are trained artists, and perhaps therein lies the 
secret of their success. It is perhaps invidious to select one 
firm for special mention, but as the results of Mr. Colls and 
the Typographic Etching Company are in every way so 
superior when artistically considered, we feel it our duty 
to record the fact here for the benefit of the student. 
Quite recently there has been much discussion on the 
vital question of "Photogravures v. Engravings/* and 
some of the English firms have publicly announced that ifc 
is necessary to finish their work by hand, while others 
privately maintained the same fact. Mr. Colls, late of the 
Typographic Etching Company, on the other hand, main- 
tains that a plate, perfect in quality, can be produced with- 
out the aid of a touch by hand. Further on will be found 
a communication on the process by the etcher, Mr. 
Colls, who therein states that he can and does produce 
his work without any retouching. 

The Dawson process renders the light in the shadows 
better than any of the other processes, this being effected 
by the method of working, and, as a whole, the " quality " 
of the work is unapproachable, it beats mezzotint out of 
the field in its subtlety and delicacy. 

And here we would caution the gentlemen of the press English v. 
who have lately written so freely and so mistakenly on p otogra- 
the subject of photogravure, that the best photogravures V ui;e. & 
are not produced in France, but in England. Englishmen 
dp not seem to know when they possess a " good thing." 

We venture to say, without any diffidence, that for the 
reproduction of negatives from nature, Dawson's process 
is facile princeps, and to assert that for the reproduction 
of pictures, some of the English processes are equal to, 
if not superior to, the continental processes. This is also 
the opinion of several artists who have seen specimens of 
the work done in both countries. The process, as worked 
in America, does not give results equal to those obtained 
in England. For diagrammatic purposes, we consider 
nearly all of the English processes possess qualities of 
equal value. 

Another new departure for which we had some 



Naturalistic Photography. 

Hints for 


by photo- 

battling was a minor point, but an important one. It 
was on the question of lettering. It had been the 
practice of many of the firms to engrave in plain lettering 
beneath the picture, the name of the firm, and the words 
"negative by ," and often in addition the word " copy- 
right/' This engraving, as it was usually done, gave a 
" cheap 3 ' look to the picture. We felt that the picture 
was injured by this procedure, so we insisted that our 
name should be cut in the picture, in a quiet manner, 
as an etcher would sign his name, and that no ordinary 
engraving should appear on the plate. In case, then, our 
student should at any time have any of his works repro- 
duced, we will give him a few hints, for though the 
publisher does the business part, the artist always has 
the passing of the plates. 

When sending his plates, then, to be bitten, he should 
send a well-printed platinotype print with them, a print 
having just the effect he wishes for in the copper-plate. 
If clouds are to be introduced, the cloud negative should 
be sent as well. He will in due time receive a proof, 
which he must go carefully over, making any notes on 
the margin as to re-biting, &c. If it be retouched or 
utterly bad, it must be rejected. Of course, it is here 
evident that his art knowledge will come in, for if 
ignorant of art, how can he make remarks to the " biters " 
who are often artists? He must continue asking for 
proofs until he receives a satisfactory one, for no plate 
can be forced upon him if he can prove it to be wrong. 
If he have real grounds for objection, he will find the 
English firms most generous, for they take a pride in 
their work. They have, in some cases, made as many as 
three plates from a subject for us, with no extra charge, 
and this we could never get a French firm to do. When 
he approves of the plate, he signs the proof to that effect. 
Then comes the great question of " colour," that is the 
coloured ink to be used; for one of the great advantages 
in photo-etching lies in the number of colours and shades 
of colours which can be used. Here, again, his artistic 
knowledge comes in, and he will find the effects produced 
by different colours are marvellous. Having, then, sug- 

Photo- Mechanical Processes. 211 

gested his colour and tint, he will receive proofs printed 
in them, and he finally decides upon the tint suitable for 
each plate, and these are kept as standards on a file. 
The matter of printing papers, too, offers great variety 
and scope for artistic selection; but here the student 
will find he has not a free hand, the publisher often 
limiting his choice in that on financial grounds. The 
student must see, however, that if India paper be used, 
an unsuitable tint be not selected. For example, India 
paper may be yellow or white, obviously then, if the 
plate is to be printed in bartolozzi red, white India must 
be used, and not the ordinary yellow-tinted India. The 
student must be careful when sending his platinotype 
print, to cut it exactly to the limits he wants the picture 
on copper. Copper-plates can be produced in this way 
from prints in cases where the negative has been 
broken. If the sky is not an important part of the 
picture, it is better to have it a flat grey tint, or delicately 
gradated. The student, of course, remembering certain 
physical truths, as, for example, that still water is, as a rule, 
lower in tone than the sky which it reflects, &c. The best 
test of relative value of sky and water is to turn the picture 
upside down. All these subtleties must be carefully con- 
sidered, for a sky lower in tone than the still water re- 
flecting it, would, with rare exceptions, be a fatal artistic 
error, and enough to condemn the plate. The details 
which thus go to make or mar a picture are countless. 

This, then, is our experience of the photo-mechanical 
processes, and, as we make it a rule never to write on any- 
thing we have not full practical knowledge of, we have 
asked our friend, Mr. Colls, to write us some particulars 
of these processes. We have done this because there are 
certain misleading books in the market on the subject, 
written by men without such special knowledge as can 
only be obtained by a man who has worked at the process 
for years and at nothing else, and who is, in addition, an 
artist. Mr. Colls is both a specialist and an artist in this W. I-. 
work. In our opinion the future artists who practise Colls ou 
photography will also photo-etch their own plates, etching 
which is greatly to be desired, but since these processes 

p 2 

2 1 2 Naturalistic Photography. 

are at present kept very secret, this knowledge cannot now 
be acquired. Nevertheless, we feel that the day is not 
far distant when every artist who expresses himself by 
photography will also bite his own plates and make his 
own blocks, and the prints will be published by print- 
dealers as etchings are now. This, in our opinion, is the 
only method which can give full artistic satisfaction. A 
final important consideration is the number of good 
prints which can be palled from each plate. Dawson's 
plates, being bitten deeper, will obviously stand more 
wear and tear than the others, and will produce a greater 
number of good impressions. Mr. Colls thinks that at least 
3000 good impressions can be pulled from each plate, 
if the steel-facing will last. We append Mr. Coils' 
remarks : 


Preamble. J N giving a description of the various methods that are 
employed for reproducing photographs from nature for 
the copper- plate press, it is obvious that only those 
which are purely ' automatic ' meed be mentioned, as 
it is impossible to give a true rendering of those 
beautiful forms and delicate gradations of tone, which 
we see in nature, by any but automatic means. For so 
ever-varying and sudden are her changes, that it is by 
photography alone we are able to secure these effects, 
and having obtained them, we require a process which 
will give us our impressions, and one which will 
harmonize with printed matter when required for book 

" This we have in the Intaglio plate, which gives the 
most perfect tonality, and possesses all the richness and 
quality of a mezzotint plate, with the same degree o 

" For convenience of description the different methods 

of producing Intaglio plates may be classed under two 

Grown heads ' Grrown ' and ' Bitten/ I will first mention 

aud bitten t h e < g row n/ and will endeavour to point out the 

characteristics of the different processes, so that a com- 

Photo- Mechanical Processes. 2 1 3 

parison may be made between them, with the object of 
determining the one best suited for the purpose. In alt 
the growing methods the basis of the process consists in 
obtaining a gelatinous mould of the subject ; the most 
usual and simple way being to develop a carbon print 
from a reversed negative on a polished copper-plate 
which has been previously silvered, to prevent the copper 
which is afterwards deposited upon it adhering ; and to 
produce the grain which is necessary to hold the printing 
ink. The mould when wet is dusted over with powdered 
glass, sand, or the like, previously treated with wax or 
stearine, to assist its removal. 

" When the mould is quite dry the gritty particles are 
removed by gentle rubbing, leaving the gelatine in a 
grained state. Plumbago is then rubbed well over the 
picture to render the mould conductive, and it is placed 
in the electrotyping battery and a stout cast taken. 
There is some little uncertainty attending the entire re- 
moval of the gritty particles, and great danger that in 
making the mould sufficiently conductive in the heavy 
portions, the fine work is destroyed by getting blocked 
with the plumbago. The former objection has been 
overcome by substituting powdered resins, which can 
be readily dissolved away without injury to the mould, 
and the latter by the introduction of a tissue containing 
granular plumbago, which while producing the necessary 
grain for holding ink, is one of the best conductors of 
electricity, so that no after-treatment is required. 

" Similar to this is a process by which the grain is ob- 
tained by the action of light on a chemical substance, 
which crystallizes under the action of light, the crystals 
becoming larger the longer they are acted on by it. A 
deposit of copper is then made on the crystalline surface 
and a plate obtained. 

" By these methods very satisfactory results may be 
obtained for certain classes of work where the range of 
tone is not great, they are more particularly suited for 
reproducing the works of early engravers, old cuts, 
etchings, pencil and crayon drawings, and similar work 
upon rough or grained surfaces. In fact, when printed 

2 1 4 Naturalistic Photography. 

upon old paper, as is sometimes done in particular cases, 
so closely do they resemble the originals, that the most 
expert judge would have great difficulty in detecting the 
reproduction from the original; but for reproducing 
nature work, where the scale ranges from the highest 
lights to the deepest shadows, these methods are not 
suitable without much hand- work, which is ruinous to the 
faithful rendering of the subject, and the introduction of 
the roulette which is used to give the necessary depth does 
not improve the appearance, as the depth obtained by it 
is heavy, and lacking that transparency which is so 
desirable in all classes of work from nature. The great 
drawback to these methods is that the grain produced is 
upon the surface of the plate, standing up in innumerable 
little prickles, and the only way of working up a plate is 
with the roulette and scraper (the nature of the grain 
being unsuited for re-biting). These, added to the soft 
nature of grown copper, as compared to rolled or ham- 
mered copper, which is used in the biting methods, 
necessitates the greatest care in printing, and usually 
require very strong and sometimes forcing inks to give 
the necessary strength, and although a plate be steel- 
faced it will not hold out for a large number of 

IC There are other ways of producing a grain upon a 
gelatinous mould by re-sensitizing and, when dry, dusting 
over the picture brocade powder, either coarse or fine, as 
the subject may require ; the mould being previously 
treated with vaseline, or a similar substance, to allow of 
the powder adhering, and exposing to daylight for a short 
time. The powder is then removed, and it is ready for 
the battery, after being blackleaded. As all the grow- 
ing methods resemble each other so closely, I will not 
mention any others, but will proceed with a short 
description of the biting processes. 

" A polished copper-plate, preferably a hammered one, 
is thoroughly cleaned, to remove all traces of grease, and 
is dusted over with powdered asphalt or resin, and the 
plate heated until the powder becomes partially melted. 
A carbon print from a reversed transparency is next de- 

Photo- Mechanical Processes. 2 1 5 

veloped upon the grained plate and allowed to dry. The 
unprotected margin is then painted round with asphalt, 
or other resist-varnish, and a wall of bordering wax 
placed round the work. It is then ready for biting, 
which is done with perchloride of iron, the bare portions 
being first attacked; water is then added, and the biting 
proceeds to the next tone, and so on, adding water when 
required, until the solution has penetrated the thickest 
portions of the film. The greatest care must be exercised 
during this operation, and a careful watch kept lest the 
action remain too long on any part. The biting should 
proceed in a gradual manner, so that the values are not 
exaggerated. The plate is then rinsed in water, the 
bordering wax removed, and the pigment cleaned off 
with a little potash ley. 

" The biting of a plate resembles very closely the de- 
velopment of a dry-plate positive, as the action may be 
seen throughout the operation as each successive tone is 
reached. There are many variations to the above 
method, and each worker has his particular way of pro- 
ducing the grain, making the mould, biting, &c., but 
they are all based on the one just described. As the in- 
troduction of the biting methods as commercially worked 
is of more recent date than the grown, less is known of 
it, and those who work it most successfully keep it secret, 
and were it known there is little likelihood of its being 
satisfactorily worked by any but those experienced in 
copper-plate work, as long and careful study is necessary 
to master those minute details which are so important to 
ensure good results. For so delicate are the operations, 
that the changes of weather, temperature, &c., play an 
important part, and must be attended to. 

" One of the great advantages a bitten plate has 
over a grown is that the scale is greater than by any 
other method, and the nature of the grain admirably 
lends itself to re-biting should any parts require deepen- 
ing. That is, re-entering the original work by covering 
the grained surface with a protective coating, which 
resists the action of the acid etching-fluid, and deep- 
ening those parts that may require it,- stopping out with 

2 1 6 Naturalistic Photography. 

resist-varnish any portion where deepening is not 
wanted. This at once does away with the roulette, and 
the plate still maintains its original character. Ke-biting 
is seldom required on a plate from nature, for with care 
a plate can be made which needs no after-work whatever, 
and when becelled and steel-faced is ready for the press, 
notwithstanding the assertion that has been made to the 
contrary, which recognizes the process only as a basis 
for skilled after-work. It is needless to say tbat in all 
mechanical processes the very best negative is required to 
work from, for although a great deal may be done in the 
biting to counteract any delects in the negative, yet, if the 
negative is wanting in any particular, the after-result is 
sure to suffer. And here I wish to say that by the 
' very best negative ' I do not mean the ordinary photo- 
grapher's beau-ideal, but a negative which gives a true 
impression of the object photographed, and is full of the 
( quality ' and subtlety of nature. 

" The grain obtained on a plate which is bitten, differs 
materially from one that is grown, inasmuch as in the 
former it is below the surface, and in the latter upon it, 
as previously described ; consequently its wearing capa- 
bilities are far greater. 

" Another biting method which possesses the merit of 
ingenuity rather than utility, is of converting an ordinary 
bromide of silver positive into chloride of silver, by the 
action of perchloride of iron and chromic acid. The film 
when damp is brought into close contact with the face of 
a polished copper-plate. Chloride of silver now rests 
upon the copper-plate, more of it in the vigorous or dark 
portions, and less of it in the lighter, and by a galvano- 
chemical process the chloride of silver decomposes, form- 
ing metallic silver and soluble chloride of copper, and 
producing depths corresponding to the amount of chloride 
of silver present. The energy of the action may be 
increased by moistening the film with a weak solution of 
chloride of zinc, and a battery current seems necessary to 
produce good results. As can be seen, the process is a 
very delicate one, admitting of little if any latitude in 
workiog, and, unlike the first-mentioned biting process, 

Photo- Mechanical Processes. 217 

will not permit of any work being put on the positive as 
is usually done in the first method for certain work where 
the darks are very hard and pronounced, and a great 
saving of after-labour avoided. 

" It is advisable to say that the work done on the posi- 
tive and plate to which I refer is done in connection with 
facsimile work, and not with ' nature work/ for in the 
reproduction of engravings the deep blacks of the 
engravings have to be reproduced, and since in nature 
there is no black of this kind we do not have to accentuate 
parts of the plates to produce it." 


Naturalistic Photography. 



Mounting HAVING our print, the next question is bow shall it be 

and ^ mounted and framed. There can, of course, be no laws 
for this, but we feel justified in making a few remarks 
on this head. 

Moun- The best mountant we know of is a weak solu- 

tion of fine French glue. It acts better than any 
other mountant we have used, and we have tried 
several of the formulaa made with starch, arrowroot, and 
other compounds. Fine French glue holds firmly and 
there is no cockling after mounting. After mounting 
the prints are improved by being passed through a press, 
but this is by no means necessary. We shall now make 

Framing, a few remarks upon framing. In the first place it is 
our opinion that all cut mounts are inartistic. Mr. 
Whistler, not long since, made some remarks on this 
head, which are well worthy of attention. His objections 
to cut mounts were that the different tints of the picture, 
the gold border, and the cut mount, weakened the edges 
of the picture and detracted from its directness and 
strength, and this is no doubt true. For this reason we 
do not think platinotypes look well mounted on India 
paper, the edges are decidedly weakened, and as for 
mounting silver prints on India the result is most inhar- 
monious. In our opinion then the print should be 
mounted upon white paper, preferably Whatman's rough 
drawing-paper, and for all pictures less than whole plate 
size, we should recommend a margin from three to four 
inches. A suitable moulding for these would be a 

Mounting an d Framing. 219 

bevelled moulding enamelled white. In all cases where Moulding, 
the mount shows, it must be remembered that the colour 
should harmonize with the print. We saw some prints Mounts, 
of Whistler's " Sarasate " mounted on plain black cabinet 
mounts, and they looked charming. As in that case, the 
picture came out nearly all black, the whole made a har- 
mony in black. When the prints are mounted on cards 
as in the case of cartes and cabinets, there should be abso- 
lutely nothing on the face of the card. The hideousness 
of the photographer's name in shining golden letters is 
far too common. Nothing could look better for these 
small pictures than plain black mounts, with no word or 
letter or coloured line or any other embellishment. If the 
photographer is such a tradesman at heart that he must 
air his medals, let him put all that part of him on the 
back of the card. The method of stamping each photo- 
graph with the photographer's name is not less fco be 
deprecated. For the industrial photographer some 
simple but artistic lettering should be chosen, and it 
should be printed small in one corner in Indian ink, 
which harmonizes with the grey of platinotypes. Any 
good die-cutter could supply an artistic stamp, and the 
charge, even if a little greater than usual, could not be very 
great. Or the photographer might cut out his name artist- 
ically in the gelatine film, but we recommend the former 
plan. The mounts for cartes and cabinets should have 
a margin of at least half an inch all round, as this adds 
considerably to the effect. 

For platinotypes ranging from whole plate size up to Platino- 
15 by 12, we prefer to frame them up closely, showing no tyP 68 - 
mount. The frame we like best for large black and white 
work is a pattern we took from a painting by De Hooghe. 
These frames are made of mahogany, 2J inches wide, and 
bevelled inwards, and have a rather broad slip of English 
gilt between the frame and the picture. The mahogany is Frames, 
stained black and polished. Pictures of 15 by 12 and up- 
wards, should also be framed close up, and for the larger 
sizes we prefer gilt frames and simple mouldings with but 
little carving. Cambridge frames are simple, but do 
not look distinguished. Each picture should have a 

22O Naturalistic Photography. 

separate frame, and we trust that exhibition committees 
will one day see their way to enforcing this rule, which, 
besides ensuring a better effect, would prevent much bad 
work being hung. Sometimes six prints are hung for 
the sake of one or two, because they are all in one frame. 
We could scarcely believe, had we not seen it, the fact 
that some exhibitors have chronicled on a part of their 
frame the medals taken elsewhere by the picture. Such a 
proceeding, besides being vain and ill-bred, is apt to 
influence credulous judges. One would think it quite 
needless to say that this form of advertisement is not 
ornamental, nor does it enhance the virtue, qualities, or 
beauty of the picture. All artificial methods of mount- 
ing and framing are to be avoided. One of these is 
Albums, mounting on glass. All albums used for mounting prints 
should have plain pages, tinted in harmony with the 
charcoal grey of the platinotype. All the vulgar deco- 
rations of ships, flowers, &c., which disfigure the photo- 
graphic albums of to-day should be rigidly excluded. 
The bad taste of the manufacturers of these things is only 
another proof of the bluntness of the aesthetic feelings of 
producers and buyers alike. 




THE hazy notions existing among many photographers Copy- 
as to how to secure the copyright of their photographs, ri S ht - 
and other details, has led us to make a few remarks on 
the subject. In the first place the student is cautioned 
to secure the copyright of every photograph worth 
keeping, for we presume he will only keep pictures. 
This should be done at once ; it is our practice to send the 
first rough print at once to the copyright office. 

The photographer must write to the Registrar, Method of 

Stationers' Hall, Doctors' Commons, E.G., for forms for . 
copyrighting. photographs. These cost one penny each, 
and a money order must be enclosed for the amount, 
stamps not being accepted. He will then receive the 
form as given on the next page. 

The student must carefully note the footnote on the On agree 
schedule, and be most particular in all cases when he ments - 
sells his copyright in any plates to have a written agree- 
ment drawn up and signed before he fills in the copyright 
schedules. After this proceeding he can fill up the 
schedule as directed, and it is, of course, only on these 
occasions that he will be required to fill in columns two 
and three of the schedule. 

The student should carefully study the matter of 
copyrighting, for he will find both publishers and pho- 
tographers are, as a rule, ill-informed on those parts of 
the copyright law to which we now refer. 


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Copyright. 223 

He fills in then all but columns 2 and 3, as in the 
dummy, and returns the form with a shilling, a copy of the 
photograph to be registered, and one penny for postage, 
when he will receive a receipt. Each photograph must be 
separately copyrighted. This \s. \d. protects the photo- 
graph for 42 years, or for the author's lifetime and 
seven years after death. The author (being a British 
subject, or resident within the dominions of the Crown) 
is entitled to the copyright of every photograph made in 
the British dominions or elsewhere. We shall extract a 
few pertinent remarks from an excellent article on copy- 
right, which appeared in the " Year's Art of 1887 :" 

The " author " of a photograph seems to be the person 
who actually groups the sitters, and f< is the effective 
cause of the picture." An agreement is made with 
operators to obviate this reading of the law. " A photo- 
graph taken from an engraving is ' an original photo- 
graph 3 within the section. 1 " Thus a photographer cannot 
copy the photograph of an engraving in which there 
exists copyright. 

The copyright given by the act is " the sole and exclu- The 

1 i ' , p -i -t nature of 

sive ^ right ot copying, engraving, reproducing, and the right< 

multiplying the photograph and the negative thereof, by 
any means or of any size. The fact that there is copy- 
right in a representation of a scene or object does not 
prevent other people making an independent representa- 
tion of such scene or object, but a photograph of groups 
so arranged as to exactly resemble a picture would be an 
infringement of the copyright of the picture, for if in the 
result that which is copied be an imitation of the picture, 
then it is immaterial whether it be arrived at directly or 
by intermediate steps/' Photographers should pay great 
heed to this clause. For if a photograph or photogravure 
be so arranged or grouped as to resemble another already 
copyrighted, the law has been infringed. This is a most 
wholesome fact, for the veriest fool can go and arrange 
a picture after an artist has once shown him how to do it, 
for as in all art the originality is to select a beautiful 
scene in nature, there lies the difficulty. Kegistra- 

The photograph is not protected until it has been tion. 

224 Naturalistic Photography. 

registered, and if the picture is pirated before registra- 
tion there is no remedy except in special cases. 

Photographers should then register the first print they 
take from their negatives. Making lantern-slides from 
copyrighted photographs or photo-etchings is of course an 
infringement of the law, and should be severely dealt with. 
Replicas. " If a picture or photograph is painted or taken on 
commission as the copyright (unless reserved) is in the 
hands of the purchaser, the painter or photographer may 
not paint or produce a replica/'' 

Remedies Penalties. " For each offence the offender forfeits to 

infrin e ^ e P r P r i e * or f * ne co py ri g n ^ for the time being, a 

ment!^ " sum not exceeding 10L When several copies are sold 

together, the sale of each copy constitutes a separate 

offence." It will be seen that a photographer could be 

ruined if a sale of say 1000 copies could be proved, and 

serve him right too. 

Forfei- All pirated repetitions, copies and imitations, and 
ture. a n negatives of photographs made for the purpose of 
obtaining such copies, are to be forfeited to the pro- 
prietor of the copyright. 

Damages. " The proprietor may also bring an action for damages 
against persons making or importing for sale unlawful 
copies, although the importation is without guilty 

Spurious Issuing spurious pictures. If a photograph be falsely 
pictures, gigne^ ^ is an infringement, as it is to make any alteration 
in the work and then publish it as original. 

It is commonly believed that, unless the word copyright 
be on the photograph, it is not secured. This is an error 
as long as the photograph is copyrighted that is all 
that is required. 

Pecuniary " Pecuniary penalties can be recovered by bringing an 
penalties, action against the offending party, or by summary 
proceedings before any two justices having jurisdiction 
where the offender resides/' 

Final In ending this subject, we would impress upon the 

advice. photographer that it is his solemn duty to exact the 
utmost rigour of the law, should he ever have his work 




EXHIBITING a work of art is publishing it, and the student Eshi 
will, when he obtains suitable works, very naturally begin tlon8 * 
to think about exhibiting them. The subject of photo- 
graphic exhibitions is one upon which we have written 
many times in the photographic press. Photographic exhi- 
bitions are in a most unsatisfactory condition all over the 

At present, a society, or a corporation, or a private 
firm, for ends of their own, advertise an exhibition, often on 
purely financial grounds ; they hope it will pay them, 
sometimes it does pay and sometimes it does not. The 
method of organizing these exhibitions is to get a list of 
patrons, generally a few of the " classes," a few photo- 
graphers who are known, but whose fame more often 
than not is based on nothing solid, and is ephemeral, and 
finally perhaps the names of a few artists may be used to 
conjure with. Numbers of medals are advertised and 
all works have to be sent carriage paid. The judges are 
then chosen, and in nearly all cases they are utterly incom- 
petent. No one can judge a work of art unless lie be an 
artist. The combined assurance and ignorance of those 
who accept what should be considered a serious office, is 
laughable and lamentable. Is our exhibiting student 
then going to submit his work to men untrained in art ? 
If he does, he will find it either unhung, skied, or passed 
over in the awards, to make room for the pretty nothings 
and false renderings of the craftsmen's ideal. The 


226 Naturalistic Photography. 

whole judging business is such a blatant farce that the 
method of awards at photographic exhibitions is a stock 
joke among artists. We have repeatedly been to exhi- 
bitions with artists, and on nearly every occasion their 
opinion was that many of the most worthy pictures were 
passed over. Such a state of things is appalling, and when 
with that is coupled the notorious unfairness with which 
certain exhibitions are directed, as recent disclosures have 
proved, it is indeed lamentable. The tendency of all 
exhibitions as at present conducted is to degrade photo- 
graphy as an art ; that is our deliberate opinion, after 
having for several years watched the system of making 
awards and having served on several juries of awards. A 
fatal error very common among photographers is to sup- 
pose that, because a man is an eminent scientist or a great 
authority on leases, he is therefore a fit and proper per- 
son to judge pictures. The truth is he is one of the most 
unfit, for he is prejudiced, and his scientific knowledge 
has a bad influence on his judgment. 

Abolition j n our O pi n i on a ii medals should be done away with, all 
* distinctions between " amateur " and " professional " re- 
moved ; all pictures should be hung on the line, the hanging 
committee should be selected from those photographers 
who have proved themselves by their works to know most 
about art ; and all pictures should be exhibited in separate 
frames. If medals must be awarded in order to attract 
exhibitors, let the awards be made by artists of recognized 
position only. You have only to look at the medals 
awarded, to know what to expect ; there is, with one or 
two exceptions, not the feeblest suggestion of art in 
them, they belong to the class of medals awarded to 
Medals as patent ice-cream machines, best refined arrow-root and 
works of dog-biscuits. If medals are awarded, each one should 
be a work of art, the original having been modelled by a 
good sculptor. The student, as a rule then, should pay 
no regard whatever to the awards made at exhibitions 
by photographers, the only real test of value is when the 
awards are made by trained artists, but it is rarely that 
even one artist serves on a jury of awards. 

If our student must exhibit, we advise him to mark his 

Exhibitions. 227 

work " Not for Competition." Gambling for medals has Gambling 
lately assumed alarming proportions, as the recent com- 
ments in the Photographic News prove. It is enough to 
disgust all artists, who will of course keep aloof from 
photographic circles, as they already do, as long as things 
continue as they are. Can the folly of human nature go 
further than when we hear of Mr. Guncotton, noted for 
his studies in collodion, or Mr. Chromatic, noted for his 
patent lens, or Mr. Gelatine noted for his emulsion pro- 
cess, assembling in solemn conclave to award medals for 
pictures, to judge which, needs years of careful and special 
study and wide artistic experience. The student, curious 
on these matters, has only to note how different are the 
awards when artists give the prizes. Many of our best 
workers, we know, will not exhibit, so long as the crafts- 
man's ideal is set up as the standard, and the judges are 
not artists. In the early days of photography, when Sir Early days 
Charles Eastlake, formerly president of the Royal Academy, p^ . 
was also president of the Royal Photographic Society, and graphic 
when Sir W. J. Newton, the eminent miniature painter Society, 
was one of the vice-presidents, there seemed some chance 
for photography, and all might have gone well, had not 
these artists, as we are informed, been harried and 
worried by the ignorant wran^lings of their brother 
" photographic artist " (?) judges. Those who were thus 
responsible for the resignation of those artists, deserve to 
be pilloried to the end of time in photograph 1 '' 1 literature, 
and such, we are sure, is the feeling of all who earnestly 
wish for the good and ad' v cmuement of photography. 

This is a painful subject, but we conceive it to be our 
solemn duty to warn the student who is anxious to 
follow photography as an art, against all these traps. Let 
him set out with the determination to work for the 
approval of artists, and let him despise the approval or 
disapproval of all ignorant of art. As John Constable J. Con- 
said long ago, " the self-taught artist has a very igno- stable - 
rant master ! " 

We hope the reforms regarding exhibitions which we Reforms 
have for years advocated, and more fully set forth in a *? exhibi ' 
photographic journal, in an article entitled " An Ideal 

Q 2 

228 Naturalistic Photography. 

Exhibition/' may some day be adopted, but we cannot 
be very sanguine. However, until some such reforms are 
adopted, photography must struggle on in darkness, and 
the blind will continue to lead the blind ; and all we can 
do is to caution others, and ourselves avoid the guidance 
of the blind, unless we too wish to be led into the ditch. 

22 9 



WE have then finished Book II., and we presume that the Advice, 
student has now mastered his technique and practice, but 
the end is not yet. The student may thoroughly understand 
the scientific side of photography, he may have mastered 
completely the use of his tools and he may be able to 
produce impressions on his plates such as he desires, but 
the end is not yet, for now he has to learn the practice 
and principles of art, he has to prove whether he can 
be an artist, for such is only given to a few. All can 
learn to draw, to paint, to photograph, to etch, but they 
may remain draughtsmen, painters, photographers, 
etchers all their lives, and never become artists. The 
history of art shows indeed how few become artists at all, 
arid as for those who become great artists, they are as 
scarce as great poets. The student then must study 
art in some form or other, as well as his own technique 
and practice, which lie could learn alone if he followed our 
instructions. Art, however, cannot so be learned, and the 
student should, if possible, attend some art classes. There 
are numerous art schools throughout the kingdom, and 
our student cannot do better than enter one of them and 
go through a course of drawing. Though no very profound 
knowledge is to be obtained at such schools, what is 
taughtis better thannothingat all, and after all the student 
cannot expect to get the best advice on the matter, that is 
given to but the very few and fortunate. 

In the next book we shall give what advice we can, 
but at the same time our student must study practically 

230 Naturalistic Photography. 

some branch of art ; unless, indeed, he wishes to become 
one of the mighty band of art-ignorant craftsmen, or 
unless he is so fortunate as to be cast amongst highly 
talented artists, to whom he can easily apply for advice. 
For having learned his technique and practice he has but 
learned how to speak, he can only show his calibre by 
what he has to say and how he says it, just as all the 
world can write yet only the highly trained can write 

In a very few months the student will see, if he is fitted 
by nature to become an artist, and if he is not our advice 
is give it up, or take up one of the scientific special 
branches, and if he is incapable of doing good work there, 
he must content himself to play at photography, as too 
many photographers do now, but in our opinion the art 
is not worth playing at, there are so many more satisfy- 
ing games when play is the end and aim. 


' He does not sufficiently understand that things are of value only 
according to their fundamental qualities, and he still believes that 
the care with which a thing is done, even if it is aimless, ought to be 
taken into account. In fact it would be a good thing to make him 
understand that things exist only to the extent of the stuff they 





"V^B are all born mentally blind, but almost immediately Bom 
we detect light, as can some of the lowest animals, blmd - 
then we learn to distinguish the colours and forms of 
objects as we grow older, and there the majority of us 
stop, and yet we all think we can see equally well. 
That we cannot is a truism, for after being able to 
distinguish colours and forms, but very few persons go 
on to educate their sight more perfectly. Some of us 
may learn to distinguish certain kinds of material, the Trades, 
different aspects of these materials under different condi- 
tions, and so they learn trades and are excellent judges 
of tea, coffee, hosiery and paper. Still higher come the 
scientific men who pay more attention to the education of 
the sight. They learn to distinguish the microscopic Science, 
beings, the life-histories of the lower forms of animal 
life, the histology of flowers, the structure of the trees, 
the aspects of the skies, the physical and chemical pheno- 
mena of the elements, the movements of the planets, so 
that in all their walks nature is full of interest to them ; 
they find wisdom in a pond, they revel in a marsh, or 
they travel to a far country for the sake of rare birds' 
eggs, or spend days and nights in their laboratories to 
solve new chemical problems, or organize expeditions to 
study unusual phenomena of the heavenly bodies ; they 
see and love all these things. The man uneducated in 
science finds no interest in a drop of muddy water, he 
finds nothing wonderful in the vegetation of the country 
side, he passes unheeded the rarest birds, and the rain- 


Naturalistic Photography. 

to culti- 

bow, and storm cloud, and the blazing comet, all alike to 
him have no interest, he is blind to them ; or if he sees 
them at all, it is as through a glass, darkly. 

All this the world allows, and allows that no one save 
those who by hard work have trained themselves can see 
these things. But mark the stupidity of mankind, he 
allows he is blind to the pleasures of science and will 
remain so, unless he studies the subject, but when it 
comes io art matters, like a weathercock, he shifts 
round and thinks he can understand all that without any 
training at all, yet he is born as blind and incapable of 
understanding art as he is of understanding science until 
he has trained himself to understand. 

The artist, like the scientific man, begins by studying 
closely his subject nature as a whole he studies her 
in all her aspects, he seeks for harmonies and arrange- 
ments in colour and form, for beautiful lines of composi- 
tion, and only after long and close observation do the 
scales drop from his eyes and he sees a beautiful pose, 
even in a child digging up potatoes, or a man throwing 
a hammer or running a race, or he sees subtle beauties 
of colour in a reed-bed, or poetry and pathos in an old 
peasant stooping under a load of sticks, and this is far 
more difficult to see than it is to learn to see the scientific 
truths, and that is why there are so few real artists and 
poets and so many more scientific men. Art, alas, cannot 
be learned like science, hard work will not necessarily 
make an artist. Most photographers are art-blind, but 
they are like the colour-blind old lady who did not know 
it, and of course the only hope for them is to be convinced 
of their blindness, then perhaps they may do something 
towards getting rid of the defect. 

The student should now clearly understand why it is so 
necessary that this faculty of artistic sight should be culti- 
vated and trained, for since it is our fundamental principle 
that all suggestions for pictures should come from nature, 
we must first see the picture in nature and be struck by 
its beauty so that we cannot rest until we have secured 
it on our plate ; we must therefore learn to see it in 
nature. If we see a beautiful pose, or a beautiful effect 

Educated Sigh t. 235 

in nature, we should at least make a note of it if we 
cannot secure it. A slight sketch made at the time will do. 
Therefore, amateur reader, if you have not trained yourself 
by study to see these things in nature, blame no one 
but yourself, but remember you are blind, blind, blind ; 
but there is a remedy, and no surgical operation is 
required either. 

Study ! You must ever be on the look-out for beauties, Necessity 
that is the necessary mental attitude, otherwise they will of study, 
never be seen. You must look for a thing if you wish 
to find it, and it is only by showing us your finds that 
you will prove you have artistic insight, we shall not 
believe a word you say about art until we see it in your 
work. If you do not study, or if you are incapable, you 
will remain blind in spite of your looking, and there will 
be weeping and gnashing of teeth when you show to 
the world commonplaces which you think are gems, for 
the world will soon tell you they are commonplace. We 
once knew a person who was colour-blind, who resented 
the suggestion as a personal insult, until one evening her 
eyesight was tested, when her colour-blindness was 

Let the student then be assured that he is blind, he 
cannot see art and nature until he has studied them long 
and closely. He may be arrogant enough to think he 
knows all about her without study. If that is so, as he 
grows older let him refer back to his earlier works, and 
if he has progressed meanwhile, let him recall how perfect 
he thought those early works at the time he did them, 
and then let him lash himself for his folly. A 
really good work will always bear looking back at, and 
will hold its own however old the artist gets. There No royal 
is no royal road to this appreciation of the beauties of road ' 
art and nature, none but incessant and loving study, 
and though the cockney, or sage of the university, who 
dwells in towns and learns his art and his nature in the 
National Gallery and British Museum, may lecture on 
nature and art, let the student avoid him and his 
example. Lectures on art at any time are but Dead Sea 

236 Naturalistic Photography. 

The student then must educate his eyesight in order 
to see the beauties of nature and art, and to do this he 
must study hard, for the true artist wishes to see these 
beauties and to record them, that is all, nothing more. 
The seers who see deeply, they are the poets ! In 
science the original discoverers are the seers, and since 
but few can aspire to become seers, nevertheless let the 
rest be content to go on studying, for all of us can see 
these things with an educated and intelligent eye, and 
seeing, understand, and that reward is worth the pains. 




No chapter of this book has given us so much thought Composi- 
as this chapter on composition. tlon - 

We could easily, as most writers have done, have given 
a digest of Mr. Burnet's laws of composition, but we 
have no faith in any " laws of composition." A law, to Laws of 
be logical, must hold good in all cases ; now the so-called composi- 
" laws of composition," are often broken deliberately by tlon> 
great artists, and yet the result is perfect. This is easily 
explained, for these so-called laws are mere arbitrary 
rules, deduced by one man from the works of many artists 
and writers ; and they are no more laws in the true 
sense than are the laws of Phrenology or Astrology. 

The great question then, which presented itself to us, Our 
was this : Will the study of these so-called rules do good problem. 
or harm to tbe student ? Will a knowledge of them lead 
mui to tne production of conventional work, or will it in 
any way help him in his future work ? We had many 
earnest discussions on this point with artists, and they 
seemed equally uncertain in the matter, though one con- 
demned all such laws as absurd and unnecessary. We 
most certainly feel inclined to agree with that one 
dissentient, but in trying to place ourselves in the position 
of the photographic student, with absolutely no know- 
ledge of art, we have come to the conclusion that, perhaps, 
the student had better study Mr. Burnetts te Treatise on "Treatise 
Painting." A cheap edition of this book is published by ? n 
Dr. E. Wilson, of 835, Broadway, New York, and every " 
student should get a copy of it. It- can be thoroughly 
mastered in a week or two, so that not much time will 

238 Naturalistic Photography. 

be lost. The numerous plates will at any rate be of some 
use to the student. 

Our ideas Now, from these remarks, it must not be assumed that 
on oompo- IT tc > n 

sition. we are no believer in ' ' composition. Composition is 

really selection, and is one of the most if not the most 
vital matters in all art, certainly the most vital in the 
art of photography. But the writer maintains there are no 
laws for selection. Each picture requires a special com- 
position, and every artist treats each picture originally ; 
his method of treatment, however, often becomes a "law" 
for lesser lights. 

It has been assumed by opponents to ' ' Naturalism " 
that naturalistic artists ignore composition, and portray 
nature " anyhow/' just as she happens to present herself 
to them. Nothing could be further from the truth. 
None is more careful in selection and arrangement than 
the naturalistic painter, at the same time none is less 
conventional. Nature is not always suitable for pictorial 
purposes, though she is often enough suitable, and it is 
when she is propitious that the artist depicts her; hence 
the great principle of naturalism, that all suggestions 
should come from nature. The object of art training is 
to show these propitious moods, anid to enable the painter 
to portray them. We prefer, then, the word " selection " 
to composition. The matter really stands thus, a good 
naturalistic artist selects a composition in nature which 
he sees to be very fine. 

By composition, as used in this paragraph, is meant 
the harmonious and fitting combination of the various 
component parts of the picture which shall best express 
the picture. 

Our best method will be to follow Mr. Burnetts 
division of his subject, and offer a running commentary 
on the essentials of his work from a photographer's stand- 
point, giving our ideas on the subject when they differ 
from those of the author of ft A Treatise on Painting/' 


Education of the Eye. Measurement and Form. 
Omitting to comment on Mr. Burnetts remarks, we put 

Composition . 239 

the matter thus, that it is highly desirable for all photo- 
graphers to learn drawing, and to learn it intelligently. 
Nothing could be more lamentable than the way in which 
drawing is taught in our schools, it is worse than useless. 
The student should go to some good art school for a few 
months, and learn drawing, for in that way are learned the 
analysis and construction of objects, and, above all, the 
eye is trained to careful observation, which will be 
invaluable in the study of tone and selection. 

Perspective. Perspec- 


This section the student should read over carefully, 
understanding thoroughly the " point of sight " and the 
causes of violent perspective. For in photography, 
though his lens may be true in drawing, he can as easily 
obtain violent perspective as the draughtsman, by placing 
the lens too close to his model. Fore- shortening, too, 
should be thoroughly understood. Aerial perspective has 
been simply treated by us in this work, and the various 
remarks of Burnet on this subject must be taken cum 
grano salis. 

Chiaro-oscuro. Chiaro- 

This term, means light and shade. Now the term 
" chiaro-oscuro " is very misleading, for it is used by 
different artists to mean different things. The whole of 
photography depends on the proper management of light 
and shade, for our drawing is done for us ; but we prefer 
to use the more modern term, "tone/' to express what 
we mean by light and shade ; that term we have already 
fully explained. Chiaro-oscuro, as we understand it, is 
the arbitrary placing of masses of light against masses 
of shade to produce certain desired effects ; it is, there- 
fore, conventional, and akin to the law which required all 
trees to be painted fiddle-brown. It is needless to say 
the only way such a conventional chiaro-oscuro can be 
obtained in photography is by arranging the objects in 
nature, or by retouching, and both are against our 
principles. The student, then, must, as we have said, 
master " tone/' that is his chiaro-oscuro, his light and 


240 Naturalistic Photography. 

shade, and he must always remember to look for 
Breadth. < f breadth " in his treatment. Breadth is found in all 
good work, and it depends in photography not entirely 
upon light and shade, but upon the focussing and deve- 
loping as well, as we have already indicated. Why 
are spotty-lighted, sharply-focussed, brightly-developed 
negatives so " noisy " and garish and inartistic ? It is 
that they lack " breadth." It must not be thought from 
this that no sunny pictures have breadth ; on the contrary, 
if the masses are large, and the planes well rendered, and 
the tonality true, there can be as much breadth in a sunny 
picture as in a grey-day effect. It has been said that 
<c breadth" is a device of the painters, but this is mere non- 
sense. Let the student look well at a simple stretch of 
grass-land bordering a still lake, on a damp, misty eveninsr, 
and then he will see breadth. Let him focus that scene as 
sharply as he likes, including a portion of sky as well, 
and develop and print from it, and he will find breadth, 
and he will probably have a clear understanding as to the 
meaning of the word. 

Mr. Burnet divides chiaro-oscuro into five parts, viz. 
light, half-iight, middle tint, half-dark, dark. This 
arbitrary division is hypercritical. For working purposes, 
light, half-tone or middle tint, and dark, are quite 
sufficient; other subdivisions are far too subtle and 
numerous to be considered theoretically, and, practically, 
truth of tone is only to be learned by long experience 
and study, and we believe all the directions given by Mr. 
Burnet for producing relief, harmony, and breadth, to be 
artificial and useless. An examination of the plates shows 
clearly how futile are his deductions, and how untrue in 
light and shade, viz. tone, they all are. 

Oomposi- Composition. 


Mr. Burnet opens with the statement that " geometric 
forms in composition are found to give order and regu- 
larity to an assemblage of figures." This is the first 
principle on which is built his structure of geometrical 
composition. We will omit the dicta of literary men on 

Composition. 241 

pictorial art which Mr. Burnet is so fond of quoting-, but 
which we consider too worthless to do more with than 
mention. Let us then apply ourselves to the study of 
his thesis. 

His first remarks are upon angular composition, and as 
he finds that these lead him into conventional methods, he 

foes on to say that this conventionality can be rectified by 
alance. Even if we would follow thi^ form of composition 
our means are limited, for, unlike the painter, we cannot 
alter and re-arrange. However, we have no wish to make 
" angular compositions/' and consider them false in 
theory. Painters, on the other hand, mu^t settle these 
matters for themselves; we know how many settle them, 
that is by ignoring all such teachings as nonsense. Next 
we come to the " circular composition/' which, we are told, 
is " applicable to the highest walks of art," wherever 
they may be. Soon after this we come upon the truest 
remark in the book. "Artists generally prefer the 
opinions of untutored children to the remarks of the most 
learned philosophers," and we fear most modern artists 
prefer the teachings of nature to those of that philosopher 
John Burnet, F.R.S. Finally, Mr. Burnet winds up with 
the words, " I must also caution the young artist against 
supposing that these modes of arrangements are given 
for his imitation. I merely wish him to be acquainted 
with the advantages any particular composition possesses, 
that in adopting any invention of his own, he may 
engraft upon it these or similar advantages." 

Now this reads very oddly after talking of rules of 
composition, for what is the good of a rule if it is not to 
be followed ? and it reads very illcgically when compared 
with the quotation from Reynolds (Brougham ?), which 
goes to back up the excuse for advocating rules as Burnet 
gives them, viz. " to those who imagine that such rules 
tend to fetter genius, &c." 

In short, the whole work is illogical, unscientific, and 
inartistic, and has not a leg to stand on. It is very specious 
to say that all compositions are made according to geome- 
trical forms, for nothing can be easier than to take arbi- 
trary points in a picture and draw geometrical figures 

242 Naturalistic Photography. 

joining them. The pyramid is a favourite geometrical 
form, of composition. Now take any picture, and take 
any three points you like, and join them, and you have a 
pyramid, so does every composition contain a pyramid, as 
does a donkey's ear. But enough of this. The student is 
distinctly warned against paying any serious attention to 
these rules ; it is, however, as we have said, well that 
he should know of them, and we suspect he will learn 
something of design from merely looking carefully at the 
plates. Of tone he will learn nothing. 

With Mr. Burners remarks upon colour we are in no 
way concerned. 

But the student will say, how, then, can composition be 
learned ? Our answer to this is that composition, that 
s selection, cannot be learned save by experience and 
practical work there is no royal road to it, no shilling 
guide. This subtle and vital power must be acquired if 
we are to do any good work, for we are dumb until we do 
acquire it. We can no more express ourselves in art 
without having mastered composition, than a child can 
express himself in prose until he has learnt the art of 
writing. It is for this reason that we must learn art 
practically, for no written " rules or laws " can be given. 
Each picture is a problem in itself, and the art-master 
can help the student to solve the problems as they arise, 
in that way only can composition be learned. The proof 
of this is that young painters who have been through 
the schools are very weak in composition, it is only by 
continual failures that they acquire the necessary know- 
ledge. Let the student trace the development of any 
painter's work, and he will find that his early works are 
always poor in composition and feeble in motif. 




IT is presumed the student has thoroughly mastered and 
applied all that has preceded this chapter, especially 
the matter of -tone, otherwise it is no use attempting to 
make pictures, which means attempting composition. 

Presuming then the student is master of the subject 
as already treated, we will now proceed to offer some 
suggestions on picture-making, but be it distinctly 
understood they are only suggestions. 

We shall divide the subject into two sections, begin- 
ning with out-door work. 


Very fine portraits and groups can be taken out of Out-door 
doors. In taking such pictures, it is admissible to dictate po *I 
the dress of the model, and to arrange tea-parties, sport- 
ing, athletic, and other groups. But if the student 
intends to make them artistic, he must be very particular 
with his types, and see above all things that the senti- 
ment is true. For example, it is a fine parody on nature 
to photograph a gaunt and self-conscious girl in aesthetic 
clothing, for dress it cannot be called, with a tennis-bat 
in her hand. For a tennis picture, fine girls, physically 
well-formed, should be chosen. 

Next the student should choose a simple background, Back- 
which with the dress and flesh tints form a harmony or fine g roun( i. 
study in tone. The model's dress should be v^.ry simple 
and well-fitting, such dresses as were worn by Botticelli's 
women (dresses quite unlike the modern aesthetic gowns), 
being very artistic for women, while flannel shirts or simple 

R 2 

244 Naturalistic Photography. 

white trousers will look well on the men. All mon- 
strositiefc and exaggerations of fashion should be avoided, 
such as flowers, chatelaines, wasp-waists, high heels, and 
dress improvers. The best material for dresses for 
pictures is a coarse, limp, self-coloured muslin (butter- 
uloth is excellent for the purpose). All jewellery should 
dresses, be eschewed, the only decoration of this kind that 
Jewellery, photographs simply and well is perhaps a string of 
pearls, which looks charming. 

The work must be true in sentiment, and the student 
must choose an appropriate treatment of the subject. 
The portrait being out of doors, we must be made to feel 
that fact ; thus; a girl resting from tennis, a girl in a 
riding-habit, or better still on horseback, would be 
very appropriate. The background must be carefully 
selected to be in keeping with the figure, and to help to 
tell the story fully and emphatically, and yet it must be 
kept subdued. 

Groups. Groups are very difficult to treat artistically, and our 
never-failing rule is to limit as much as possible the number 
Treatment of people in the group. Having now chosen his model and 
jf model. arranged other matters, the student must remember to 
let his model stand or sit, as he or she likes, and all 
suggestions for the pose should come from the model ; 
this is a fundamental principle of naturalism. A great 
friend of ours, a well-known sculptor, assures us 
he would not dare to pose a model according to any 
preconceived idea, but he watches the model pose in 
different ways, and when he sees a striking and beautiful 
attitude he seizes on that and makes a rapid sketch of it. 
That is the only true way for the photographer to work, 
he must have the camera ready, focussed and arranged, 
a r jd when he sees his model in an unconscious and 
beautiful pose, he must snap his shutter. It is thus very 
evident how important is art-knowledge and insight for 
all good photographic work, and it is thus evident how 
a man who is sympathetic and of a refined temperament 
will show his individuality in his work. 

el With commercial groups of bands, football teams, &c., 

Groups. the student has nothing to do, and let him never be 

Out-door and In-door Work. 245 

induced to photograph anything which he does not think 
will make a picture. He must have patience also, when 
waiting for nature's suggestions ; we have waited a whole 
morning, rubber ball in hand, for a suitable grouping of 
colts, but we finally got one of the best things we ever 
produced. If our photographer be a smoker, let him 
light his pipe and take it easy, talking meanwhile to the 
model ; at length his chance will come, but it may only 
come once, and then he must not hesitate or the picture 
may be lost in a moment. It is preferable that all 
out-door portraits should be taken on a grey day, or in 
the shade if the sun be shining. 

There is a wide field open to wealthy photographers for 
producing really good pictures of their friends at country 
houses. But the student must remember that to produce a 
perfect picture takes a long time and can only be achieved 
by long and patient practice, coupled with artistic 
ability. The hurried representations of shooting, boating, 
and family groups, which are so often produced by in- 
dustrial photographers, are artistically beneath contempt. 
They are mere statements of facts, and as much akin to 
art as the directions in a cookery-book are akin to litera- 
ture. Photography up to a certain point, and in a 
haphazard way, is so easily learned now-a-days that there 
is absolutely no merit in producing such work. Such 
photographs are only the confessions of untrained and 
commonplace minds. 


The student who would become a landscape photo- 
grapher must go to the country and live there for long 8C 
periods ; for in no other way can he get any insight into the 
mystery of nature. All nature near towns is tinged with 
artificiality, it may not be very patent but the close 
observer detects it. Among fisher-folk this may be seen 
in the sealskin cap, in the rustic it shows itself in the hard 
billycock hat, in landscape pure it may be seen in some' 
artificial forms of the river-banks, or in artificial under- 
growths ; the mark of the beast, the stamp of vulgarity, 

246 Naturalistic Photography. 

that hydra-headed monster which always appears where- 
evera few men are gathered together, is sure to be found 
somewhere. For this reason then the would-be landscape- 
photographer should pack up his things and go to some 
'locality with which he is in sympathy, just as a painter 
"Out does. Here let him be cautioned against taking part in 
ings."" an J f those " outings/' organized by well-meaning but 
mistaken people. It is laughable indeed to read of the 
doings of these gatherings ; of their appointment of a 
leader (often blind) ; of the driving in breaks, always a 
strong feature of these meetings ; of the eatings, an even 
stronger feature ; and finally of the bag, 32 " II- 
fordV 42 " Wrattens'/' 52 "Pagei's," &c. 

Apply the same sort of thing to painting, and would it 
not indeed be ridiculous ? Would it not lower painting in 
the eyes of the world if say thirty academicians with a 
leader for the day, assembled at Victoria Station with 
pastels and boards, or with paint-tubes and small 
canvasses, and went by train to some village and there 
proceeded to pastel or paint what the leader suggested ; 
then would follow the dinner (the best part, no doubt), and 
next day how edified would be the world to read in the 
daily papers of the most successful outing, the result of 
which was the covering of 32 " Rowney," 29 " Windsor 
and Newton," and 40 " Newman " canvasses ! All these 
" playings " bring photography down to the level of 
cycling and canoeing, and yet many photographers 
wonder that artists will have no official connection with 
photography. We know well that it is for these and 
similar reasons that serious artists will not allow their 
names to be officially connected with photography, and we 
here earnestly appeal to all who really have the advance- 
ment of photography at heart to do all in their power to 
d?tric f kring such trivial " play " to an end. Having then decided 
to go to the country, let the student think well with which 
kind of landscape he is most in sympathy, but let him 
always remember this fact that all landscape is not 
suitable for pictorial purposes ; he must therefore learn to 
distinguish between the suitable and the unsuitable. 
Landscapes there are full of charm, pleasant places for 

Out -door and In- door Work. 247 

a picnic or encampment, but when you come to put 
them into a picture, they become tame and commonplace. 

Again let the student avoid imitation. If he knows 
that an artist has been successful in one place, do not 
let him, like a feeble imitator, be led thither also, for 
the chances are, if his predecessor were a strong man, 
that he will produce commonplaces where the other 
produced masterpieces, and thereby confess his inferi- 
ority. It is far better to be original in a smaller way 
than another, than to be even a first-rate imitator of 
another, however great. 

For this reason the present method adopted by inar- Photo- 
tistic writers of publishing " Photographic Haunts " is graphic 
strongly to be deprecated, such guides can but lead to 
conventional and imitative, therefore contemptible work. 
The fact of the matter is nature is full of pictures, and 
they are to be found in what appears to the uninitiated, 
the most unlikely places. Let the honest student then 
choose some district with which he is in sympathy, and 
let him go there quietly and spend a few months, or even 
weeks if he cannot spare months, and let him day and 
night study the effects of nature, and try at any rate to 
produce one picture of his own, one picture which shall 
show an honest attempt to probe the mysteries of 
nature and art, one picture which shall show the author 
has something to say, and knows how to say it, as per- 
haps no other living person could say it ; that is something 
to have accomplished. Remember that your photograph 
is as true an index of your mind, as if you had written 
out a confession of faith on paper. 

We will now offer a few remarks on the component 
parts of a picture. 


As we have said there can be no rules for the arrange- * Lines." 
inent of lines, yet they are all-important and essential to 
the expression of harmony and directness. The student 
must cultivate the habit of quickly analyzing the lines of 
a picture, and coming to a decision whether they are 
harmonious and pictorially suitable. For example, he 

248 Naturalistic Photography. 

must not have the lines of different objects cutting each 
other and forming unpleasant angles, for if he does this 
the eye of the observer will never get away from the 
geometrical figure, however good the other part of the 
picture may be. He should look for repeated line, and 
his lines should run into the picture, thus all uncomfort- 
ableness is avoided. There is no necessity for balance or the 
equal arrangement of masses on either side of the picture, 
for this, though it may produce pretty pictures, will never 
produce strong ones. Every line must help to tell the 
story and strengthen the picture, otherwise it weakens 


It is of vital importance that this be well rendered, 
the method for obtaining it having already been shown. 

The student must remember that he must give the true 
value to the separate planes of the picture, or it is 
worthless for reasons already stated. The state of the 
weather, has, as we have indicated, a wonderful modifying 
effect on this perspective, and must be carefully studied. 


Of vital importance is the relatively true rendering of 
tone as already indicated. This is such a subtle subject 
that no directions can be given for it, and the student can 
only master the subject by a long and ardent study of 
nature. He can test his knowledge by his power of 
criticizing pictures away from nature, for their truth or 
falsity of tone. The key in which the picture is. pitched 
should always be in keeping with the subject rendered. 


The objects must be arranged so that the thing 
expressed is told clearly and directly, in short, the 
student should try to express his subject as it has never 
been expressed before. All things not connected with 
the subject should be removed, and all but the chief 
thing to be expressed should be carefully subdued. The 
interest must not be divided, but all must go to help' the 

Out- door and In-door Work. 249 

expression of the motif of the picture. Thus a white 
patch the size of a threepenny piece may ruin a twelve 
by ten inch plate, as many a hat, a basket, as many a small 
article has done; just as a false foot may ruin an other- 
wise fine stanza. Be most careful how you introduce a 
detail, it may either make or mar your picture. 

The sentiment and detail must always be appropriate or 
the result is a travesty. Thus haymakers do not wear new- 
fashioned buttoned boots, nor do rustics wear sun-bonnets 
and aprons all clean and fashionably cut. But this is only 
a superficial matter, the artist must carry appropriateness 
much deeper than in mere costume ; for example, a flock 
of sheep on a pasture may be made quite false in senti- 
ment, if they are driven in away that suggests a march to 
the slaughter-house, and they very easily huddle together 
in a manner that suggests that final procession. The stu- 
dent will now see how subtle all these matters are, and 
how little yet how much divides the masterpiece from 
mediocrity. Some photographers think naturalism con- 
sists only in taking things as they are, and they will 
exclaim, if you criticize their work, " Oh ! it was just like 
that any way/' True, oh ingenuous one, but it was just 
some other way as well, and perhaps that other way 
might have given a work of art, whereas this way has 
given a bald and uninteresting fact. Selection or 
composition is a most subtle matter, and one very difficult 
to learn, but let the student persevere, and if he has the 
ability he will find that the scales will fall from his eyes 
as he goes on. 


The impression must be true throughout, and if all the Impress- 
preceding components are true the impression will be true. 81 

Our student may now have carried out all these things 
and yet there may be no picture, his mind may be 
commonplace. He may have wasted a good technique on 
a commonplace subject, such as a yacht going in full sail, 
an express train, some very ordinary dogs or horses, or 
some very extraordinary men or women. We are theii 
brought to a very important matter, the subject. 


Naturalistic . Photography. 

Art of 


Subject. The subject must have pictorial qualities, it must be 
typical, and must give aesthetic pleasure. The student 
must look for elegance and a distingue air in his subject. 
You will find that the best pictures will be of those subjects 
which hit you hardest in nature, those which strike you so 
much that you feel an irresistible desire to secure them. 
You must then train your feelings, for, as John Con- 
stable said, " the art of feeling nature is a thing almost 
as much to be cultivated as the art of reading the 
Egyptian hieroglyphics."" You must then, when you have 
felt your subject, be resolute and only take in what is 
necessary to express your subject ; this is the text of the 
artist. E very thing must be harmonious and comfortable, 
but that alone will not suffice any more than will the sub- 
ject alone. Everything must be in keeping in the picture. 
The artist must be in sympathy with his subject, 
" entrer dans la meme peau," as the French say. He 
must have no preconceived notion of how he is going to 
do a subject, but take all his suggestions from nature 
and humbly follow them and lovingly portray them. 
Pure imitation of nature (even if it were possible) won't do, 
the artist must add his intellect, hence his work is an in- 
terpretation. To photograph a " flying express " so that 
it looks as if standing still is imitation, to render it with 
the suggestion of motion by its smoke and steam is an 
interpretation. The great question which the student 
should ask himself is : My aim, what is it ? If that be 
serious and honest, and not feeble and vainglorious, he 
is all right. Remember that the aim of art is to give 
aesthetic pleasure, and that artists are the best judges of 
this matter, and you will find that so good is their train- 
ing that they often elevate the meanest things they touch. 
The highest expression is that of poetry, and therefore 
the best works of art all contain poetry. What poetry is 
and how it is to be got is not to be discussed in our 
present state of knowledge, suffice it to say that the poet 
is born and not made, though the poet's speech may be 
improved by training. 

Poetry in 
works of 

Out-door and In-door Work. 251 

Thus it will be seen how difficult a matter it is to Qualities 
produce a picture, even when we have thoroughly 
mastered our technique and practice, for, to recapitulate, 
in a picture the arrangement of lines must be appropriate, 
the aerial perspective must be truly and sub lily yet broadly 
rendered, the tonality must be relatively true, the compo- 
sition must be perfect, the impression true, the subject 
distinguished, and if the picture is to be a masterpiece, 
the motif must be poetically rendered, for there is a poetry 
of photography a,s there is of painting and literature. 

Never rest satisfied then until these requirements are 
all fulfilled, and destroy all works in which they are not 
to be found. 

That it will be possible for comparatively few to succeed 
is evident, but the prize is worth striving for, for even if 
we do not all attain to the production of perfect works, we 
shall have gained a knowledge of art and an insight into 
nature, that will be a never-failing source of pleasure to 
us in our daily walks. 


By far the most difficult branch of photography is that Figureand 
in which figures occur in landscapes. All previous lands cape. 
remarks apply to this branch, of the art, only here it is 
more necessary than ever that every detail be perfect. 
This is a branch which we have perhaps studied 
and developed more than any other, and yet even now 
we feel but a beginner in it. One thing you must never 
forget, that is the type ; you must choose your models 
most carefully, and they must without fail be picturesque 
and typical. The student should feel that there never 
was such a fisherman, or such a ploughman, or such a 
poacher, or such an old man, or such a beautiful girl, as 
he is picturing. It is a great mistake for photographers 
to attempt rural subjects unless 'they have lived in the 
country for a long time and are thoroughly imbued with 
the sentiment of country life. The truth of this axiom is 
proved by the falseness of sentiment seen in most 
country pictures done by painters even. The student 
who lives in town will find good figure-subjects in 

252 Naturalistic Photography. 

the town, and if he has no sympathy with such life, he 
should try such subjects as shooting parties, coursing 
meets, riding subjects, and beautiful women. It is fal- 
lacious to try and cultivate an unsympathetic field and 
is sure to end in mediocrity or failure. 


Studio The easiest branch of photography is portraiture in 

For- the studio, for all conditions, including even the dress of 

traiture. ^ ne mo( j e ^ are i n the photographer's hands. The lighting 

is also perfectly under control. 

Principles The principles of lighting a face are briefly these : A 
top light gives the best and subtlest modelling, and gives 
lg tmg * more relief than any other lighting. But the aim of 
pictorial art is not to give relief to illusion, therefore the 
top light effect is modih'ed by a side light and by reflec- 
tors. The principle of using a reflector is this : Light 
falling at right angles on a plane surface gives the highest 
light, then as we turn the reflector through a circle, 
we get all gradations up to full dark, when the reflector 
is turned right round. This principle must be remem- 
bered in lighting the planes of the face. The portraitist 
must work as does the sculptor, in planes and tone, that 
is, he must quickly make an analysis of the face and 
observe the most suitable treatment of the subject, and 
then he must focus and develop so as to bring the planes 
well out, and they must be broad in treatment and rela- 
tively true in tone. 

These are the only principles which can be given for 
lighting, their application can be learned by study first 
on a plaster cast, and afterwards on the living model. 
Character The great thing to obtain is the character or expression 
or expres- of the model, everything must be sacrificed for this in por- 
traiture, and enough of the figure must be taken in to tho- 
roughly express the character. Thus the head alone may 
do in some cases, in others it will be necessary to include 
the hands, in others the whole body. It is needless to 
repeat that all portraits should be taken by quick expo- 
sures. The best way is for the student to have a very long 

Out-door and In-door Work. 253 

elastic tube to his shutter, then he can walk about and 
talk to the model, and when he sees a good natural pose, 
he can expose, and his picture will probably be good. 
The present way of posing, using head-rests, &c., is 
feeble and archaic, and nearly certain to result in failure. 

Another important hint is to place the lens on the 
same level as the eye of the model, neither higher nor 
lower, especially if large heads are taken. When the 
picture is to be full length or three-quarter length, the 
head should still receive the principal attention, and 
all else be subdued. 

We have already treated of arrangements of back- 
grounds and dresses in harmonies, and of the absolute 
necessity for using only suitable accessories. In addition 
all other principles of composition, harmony, breadth, 
as already described, must be remembered. 

Finally we give a quotation from M. Adam Salomon, Adam 
sculptor and photographer : Salomon. 

" Each subject should be treated according to its own 
requirements, its own individualism. . . . When the 
artist is interested in his work and believes in his art, it 
becomes wonderfully plastic, and the materials wonder- 
fully tractable in his hands." 


Naturalistic Photography. 




Prizes for 
" set sub- 




Merit of 
and art. 
Point of 

" Artist 

As practical hints for working cannot be woven into a 
continuous text, we will give them separately. 

Never compete for prizes for " set subjects/' for work 
of this kind leads to working from preconceived ideas, 
and therefore to conventionality, false sentiment, and 

Remember that the original state of the minds of un- 
educated men is vulgar, you now know why vulgar and 
commonplace works please the majority. Therefore, 
educate your mind, and fight the hydra-headed monster 
vulgarity. Seize on any aspect of nature that pleases 
you and try and interpret it, and ignore as nature 
ignores all childish rules, such as that the lens should 
work only when the sun shines or when no wind blows. 

^olus is the breath of life of landscape. 

The chief merit of most photographs is their diagram- 
atic accuracy, as it is their chief vice. 

Avoid the counsels of pseudo-scientific photographers 
in art matters, as they have avoided the study of art. 

If you decide on taking a picture, let nothing stop 
you, even should you have to stand by your tripod for a 

Do not climb a mast, or sit on the weathercock of a 
steeple, to photograph a landscape ; remember no one will 
follow you up there to get your point of sight. 

Do not talk of Rembrandt pictures, there was but one 
Rembrandt. Light your pictures as best you can and 
call them your own. 

Do not call yourself an " artist-photographer " and 

Hints on Art. 255 

make {< artist-painters " and f< artist-sculptors " laugh ; 
call yourself a photographer and wait for artists to call 
you brother. 

Remember why nearly all portrait photographs are Falsity of 
so unlike the people they represent because the portrait p |^ ot : 
lens as often used gives false drawing of the planes and portraits, 
false tonality, and then, comes along the retoucher to put 
on the first part of the uniform, and he is followed by the 
vignetter and burnisher who complete the disguise. 

The amount of a landscape to be included in a picture Amount of 
is far more difficult to determine than the amount of lan dscape 
oxidizer or alkali to be used in the developer. eluded in 

Pay no heed to the average photographer's remarks a picture, 
upon "flat" and "weak" negatives. Probably he is "Flat" 

flat, weak, stale and unprofitable ; your negative mav and , 
T_ % -i -i i i -i-i -i p "weak" 

be first-rate, and probably is it he does not approve or it. negatives. 

Do not allow bad wood-cutters and second-rate process- Bad wood- 
mongers to produce libels of your work. cutters. 

Be broad and simple. Broad and 

Work hard and have faith in nature's teachings. simple. 

Eemember there is one moment in the year when each 
particular landscape looks at its best, try and secure it at The p 
that moment. pitious 

Do not put off doing a coveted picture until another moment, 
year, for next year the scene will look very different, 
You will never be able twice to get exactly the same 

Vulgarity astonishes, produces a sensation ; refinement Vulgarity, 
attracts by delicacy and charm and must be sought out. 
Vulgarity obtrudes itself, refinement is unobtrusive and 
requires the introduction of education. 

Art is not legerdemain ; much " instantaneous " work Art and 
is but jugglery 

Though many painters and sculptors talk glibly 
" going in for photography," you will find that very f or photo- 
few of them can ever make a picture by photography ; graphy." 
they lack the science, technical knowledge, and above 
all, the practice. Most people think they can play 
tennis, shoot, write novels, and photograph as well as any 
other person until they try. 

256 Naturalistic Photography. 

Faith. Be true to yourself and individuality will show itself in 

your work. 
Sensa- Do not be caught by the sensational in nature, as a 

tional in coarse red-faced sunset, a garrulous waterfall, or a fifteen 
nature. , , -, , 

thousand toot mountain. 

Pretti- Avoid prettiness the word looks much like pettiness, 

and there is but little difference between them, 
On study- No one should take up photography who is not content 
ing photo- to work hard and study so that he can take pictures for 
grap y * his own eye only. The artist works to record the beauties 
of nature, the bagman works to please the public, or for 
filthy lucre, or for metal medals. 

J? At the University of Cambridge, in our student days, 
it was considered " bad form " to give a testimonial to a 
tradesman for publication. This is still "bad form;" let 
the student, therefore, never let his name appear in the 
advertisement columns of photographic papers beneath a 
puff of some maker's plates or some printing papers. 
fl Good wine needs no bush." 

Value of a The value of a picture is not proportionate to the 
picture, trouble and expense it costs to obtain it, but to the poetry 

that it contains. 

" Good Good art only appeals to the highly cultivated at the 

first glance, but it gradually grows on the uncultivated, 
or the half cultivated ; with bad art the case is other- 

Life of the Give the life of the model in a portrait, not his bear- 
model. j n g towards you during a mauvais quart d'heure. 
Reflec- j) no t call reflections shadows ; learn to distinguish 

tions and -, , , 

shadows between the two. 

Beautiful Always be on the look-out for a graceful movement 

poses. when you are conversing with a person, thus you will 

Limits of Keep rigidly within the limits of your art, do not strive 

for the impossible, and so miss the possible. 
Onrepro- Never judge of the merits of a painting or piece of 

J 1 ? n ' sculpture from reproductions. 
Quality. Every good work has " quality." 

^entn -p ;aot m i s t a k e sentimentality for sentiment, and senti- 

poetry. inent for poetry. 

Hints on Art. 257 

Spontaneity is the life of a picture. Spon- 

Continual failure is a- road to success if you have J 11161 ^' 
the strength to go on. 

The colour of a landscape viewed in the direction of Colour of 
the sun is almost unseen; therefore turn your back on lan dscape. 
the sun if you wish to see nature's colouring, and you do ! 

Do not emulate the producers of photographic Christ- ^d^^d 
mas cards and "artistic "(?) opals; they are all worthy of ^artistic " 
the bagman. opals. 

Do not mistake sharpness for truth, and burnish for Finish, 

The charm of nature lies in her mystery and poetry, but Mystery, 
no doubt she is never mysterious to a donkey. 

It is not the apparatus that does the work, but the man Appara- 
who wields it. tus - 

Say as much as you can, with as little material as you 

Flatter no man, but spare not generous praise to really Good 
good work. work< 

Lash the insincere and petty homunculi who are work- Vanity, 
ing for vanity. 

Hold up to scorn every coxcomb who paints " artist- Artist and 
photographer " or " artist " on his door, or stamps it on a ^ fcl ! t " 

his mounts. . grapher. 

Remember every photograph you publish goes out for On pub- 
better for worse, to raise you up or pull you down ; do not lishing. 
be in haste, therefore, to give yourself over to the enemy. 

By the envy, lying and slandering of the weak, the O n 
ignorant, and the vicious, shall you know you are succeed- Sl 
ing, as well as by the sympathy and praise of the just, 
the generous, and the ^acters. 

When a critic has nothing to tell you save that your " Sharp- 
pictures are not sharp, be certain he is not very sharp n< 
and knows nothing at all about it. 

Don't be led away to photograph bourgeois furnished Interiors. 
interiors, they are not worth the silver on the plate for 
the pleasure they will give when done. 

The greater the work the simpler it looks and the Pkoto- 
, o JT graphs as 

easier it seems to do or to imitate, but it is not so. historical 

-Photographic pictures may have one merit which no recoida. 



Naturalistic Photography. 

Art at 


aud art. 


Art and 


" Fiddle- 
brown " 
tic works. 

On opinion 
in art. 






" Stolen 


other pictures can ever have, they can be relied upon as 
historical records. 

Art is not to be found by touring to Egypt, China, or 
Peru ; if you cannot find it at your own door, you will 
never find it. 

People are educated to admire nature through pictures. 

Science destroys or builds up, and seeks only for bald 
truth. Art seeks to give a truthful impression of some 
beautiful phenomenon or poetic fact, and destroys all that 
interferes with her purpose. 

Topography is the registration of bald facts about a 
place ; it is sometimes confounded with Art. 

The artistic faculty develops only with culture. A 
man may be a Newton and at the same time never get 
be} r ond the chromographic stage in art. 

Without individuality there can be no individual art, 
but remember that the value of the individuality depends 
011 the man, for all the poetry is in nature, but different 
individuals see different amounts of it. 

Had Constable listened to rules we might have had 
" fiddle-brown" trees in our pictures to-day. 

Nature is full of surprises and subtleties, which give 
quality to a work, thus a truthful impression of her is 
never to be found in any but naturalistic works. 

The undeveloped artistic faculty delights in glossy and 
showy objects and in brightly coloured things. The 
appreciation of delicate tonality in monochrome or 
colour is the result of high development. The fru- 
givorous ape loves bright colour, and so does the 
young person of " culture," and the negress of the 
West Indies, but Corot delighted only in true and 
harmonious colouring. 

Nature whispers all her great secrets to the sane in 
mind, just as she delights in giving her best physical 
prizes to the sane in body. Nature abhors busy insanity. 

Do not be surprised if you find " stolen bits " of your 
photographs in the works of inferior etchers, aquarellists, 
and black and white draughtsmen; it pays them to 
steal, while it does not hurt you, for they cannot steal 
your " quality." 

Hints on Art. 2 59 

Many photographers think they are photographing Nature 
nature when they are only caricaturing her. and ph- 

The sun when near the horizon gives longer shadows ^S ra P^ 
than when near the zenith. shadows. 

When writers tell you photography is one thing and photo- 
art another, find out who they are, and you shall find graphy 
their opinion on art-matters is contemptible, and it is and art> 
only their omniscient impudence and fanaticism that 
allow them to contradict a sculptor like Adam Salomon, 
and a painter like T. F. Goodall, to say nothing of others. 

The shallow public like (C clearness/' they like to see the Clearness, 
veins in the grass-blade and the scales on the butterfly's 
wing, for does it not remind them of the powerful vision 
of their periscopic ancestors the Saurians. 

When the vulgar herd jape at photography, stand firm Ja P er s at 
and ask them if their long-eared ancestors did not jape |rai>hV 
at water-colour painting and at etching. 

Ask of critics only " fair play. 5 ' Much of the criticism Criticism. 
of to-day consists in the suppression of the truth of the 
author and the advocacy of the falsity of the critic. 
Criticism is as yet in the metaphysical stage, but it will 
one day become rational and of some worth. Then, critics 
will not attempt the huge joke of " placing " people in 
order like a pedagogue, e.g. Matthew Arnold between 
Gray and Wordsworth, as some wonderful person did not 
long ago in one of the reviews ; but criticism will show us 
how works of art may serve to illustrate the life-history 
of different epochs. The huge farce of " placing " 
criticism will be one of the stock jokes of the twentieth 

s 2 

260 Naturalistic Photography. 



~^ T ^ ie ^ erm " decorative," we mean the ornamenta- 
tion of anything constructed for some useful or special 
purpose as opposed to the ornamentation whose object 
is to please per se. Thus, though both sculpture and 
easel pictures are decorative in one sense, they are exe- 
cuted with no consideration or regard for other purposes 
than to please. As we have before shown, the humblest 
of the decorative arts may be raised to the dignity of a 
fine art if an artist takes the work in hand and succeeds, 
or the work may degenerate into mere craftsman's 
work. For decorative purposes, the various methods 
are modified and adapted to the important considerations 
of the use and fitness of the object or place decorated. 
Thus no good artist would paint a finished and studied 
landscape on a dado, he would paint the scene flat, and 
colour it in appropriate harmony with surrounding 
objects, for that is the aim ; and a workman not an artist 
would, of coarse, painfully elaborate and finish it so 
that it was neither a decorative work nor a painting 
Natural- in the ordinary sense. In all good decorative work the 
ism in same old story of naturalism holds good ; all the best 
^ecoi TQ Decorative work we have seen was suggested by nature, 
and though, of course, it is beyond the scope of decora- 
tive art to ' ' copy nature," as superficial folk say, yet all 
patterns and forms and harmonies should be suggested 
by nature. We have seen harmonies of sea-weed and 
sand which would have made a beautiful colour scheme for 
decorative work. The best decorative work has always 

Decorative Art. 261 

been suggested by nature ; geometrical patterns being 
taken from crystals, microscopic drawings of vegetable 
cells, &c. 

However, we must omit a general discussion of this Photo- 
interesting subject, for we are here only concerned with g ra P h >' as 
its photographic side. We are not aware that this appli- decorative 
cation of decorative art has ever received much atten- art. 
tion ; and when we mention transparencies and enamels, 
we have said all that has been done towards employing 
photography decoratively. By enamels, of course, is not 
understood those glossed and raised productions on 
paper, which by some extraordinary blunder have been 
erroneously called enamels. 

Now the photographer, who studies and hopes to excel Princi- 
at decorative photography, must remember that he must P es ' 
work on the same general principles as he does in pro- 
ducing pictures, that is, he must pay attention, in a 
broad way, to the tone of the room, to effects of contrast, 
to harmonies, to the effect of artificial lights and of 
complementary colours, and above all to naturalism. 
Thus a delicate landscape must not be enamelled on a 
tea-cup, for it is obviously false in principle to place a 
picture on a curved surface. Again, a palmetto leaf 
must not be burned into the tiles of a fireplace, the two 
are incongruous and incompatible. Taste and a regard 
for truth should govern all such work. 

We will now briefly enumerate the uses to which 
photography might be put in decoration. 


Much might be done in this direction by an appro- Panelling 

priate choice of subject. For panels bits of landscape J^ d 

i T J , r . -, -, r n friezes, 

of strongly marked types, sea pieces, dead game, and 

plants might be admirably, done. By landscapes of 
strongly marked type, we mean such things as a dead or 
leafless tree overhanging a pond, a pollarded willow in 
winter, and like subjects, where the elements are few, 
the composition simple, and where there are no subtle 
atmospheric effects. For this work the subject must be 

262 Naturalistic Photography. 

expressed with great terseness and directness, for the form 
is what is required, not subtlety of tone or mystery. A 
group of dead mallard or teal, or an arrangement of 
bulrushes and water-lilies, are all suitable and admirable 
Negatives, subjects. Negatives for this class of work should be rather 
dense, and in some cases they may be as sharply focussed 
as possible, it being remembered that for form (diagram- 
matic form) decision is what is required. There are certain 
subjects, however, which will bear being only just sug- 
gested, such as bulrushes, reeds, &c., which are full of 
character in themselves. These objects should be photo- 
graphed against flat-tinted backgrounds, the colour chosen 
being ruled by the colour of the furniture of the room. 
The best method of procedure would be to sensitize the 
panel and print directly on to it by the platinotype pro- 
bed cess, or perhaps by some of the carbon processes, red 
carbon, carbon being especially suitable for this work. The 
Platinotype Company give directions for sensitizing 
various surfaces, all of which can be obtained from their 
offices in Southampton Bow, High Holborn. 

Friezes. For friezes, beautiful arrangements could be made of 
suitably draped figures of girls, of athletes, and of 
animals, the draped figures being in white, taken against 
a black background. These subjects printed in red carbon 
would look admirable if properly arranged. Enlarge- 
ments could be used in these cases, as it does not matter if 
the original negatives are made microscopically sharp. 
Various subjects and methods of treatment will suggest 
themselves to the thoughtful and artistic student. 
Tiles. We cannot help thinking there is a field for the 

photographic decoration of tiles. For -this purpose, as 
they are low down and seen close to, tone pictures might 
be used ; but any quality of landscape would not be 
admissible for this work. Mr. Henderson's method of 
enamelling is fully given in the late Baden-Pritchard's 
" Studios of Europe." These tiles would have to be 
cautiously used. 

Windows. There is little or nothing to be done in the decoration 
of windows by photography. Of course, transparencies 
will immediately suggest themselves, but they, like 

Decorative Art. 263 

modern glass painting, are false art. The first requisite 
of glass painting is that all the light possible shall 
pass through the pane, and that the colours shall be flat. 
Modern window-painters overstep the limits of the art, 
anl try to render tone as well, the result being bad 
artistically and bad decoratively, as utility is affected. 
Glass transparencies and opals are, to our mind, worth- 
less for decorative purposes, and should not be encouraged. 

M. Lafon de Camarsac was the first to apply photo- Enamels, 
graphy to porcelain work, in the year 1854. He worked 
with colours and produced some marvellous results, 
applying gold, silver, and various pigments in this way. 
His method was used for producing enamels for jewel- 
lery, but, of course, such things could be utilized in 
decorative work. But to produce pictures' on tea-cups, 
saucers, brooches, &c., seems to us, against all principles 
of truth. We think that with great care and taste 
this class of work might be artistically utilized in deco- 
rative art, but none but an artist must attempt it. So Poitevin's 
we shall give Poitevin's method. 

A positive on glass is obtained, and a glass plate is 
coated with gum sensitized with bi-chromate of potash. 
The positive is then placed in contact with the prepared 
plate and exposed to the light, the result being in- 
visible as in carbon printing. A very fine hair sieve is 
now taken, and dry powdered charcoal is sifted over the 
coated plate, and it will be found that the charcoal 
adheres to the parts acted upon by light. Thus is pro- 
duced a delicate portrait in as perfect tone as the origi- 
nal. This portrait is temporarily secured by brushing 
it over with collodion. The collodion film has now to be 
separated by delicate knives, and it brings away with it 
the charcoal picture. This film is next placed on a white 
enamelled copper plate, which plates are bought ready 
prepared, and a fixing paste (that used by ceramic painters 
being employed) is spread with a brush over the enamel. 
This paste combines with the charcoal image. All is now 
ready for placing in the enamelling furnace, when vitri- 
fication takes place, and all the organic bodies are 
destroyed, the vitrified charcoal image alone remaining. 

264 Naturalistic Photography. 

We think that with taste even china services might be 
decorated by means of photography. At any rate there 
is a wide field for any one with taste and feeling. 
Wall- We do not know whether or not photography has bean 

papersand applied to the manufacture of either of these materials, tut 
hangings, ,-j F r . . -. ., T , , , -. , 

there is wide scope for it. It must be remembered, how- 
ever, that definite patterns are obtrusive and undesirable. 
A rather monotonous geometrical pattern is required, the 
suggestion, however, coming from nature. Thus a good 
pattern could be obtained from a transverse section oi a 
rose-bud, or from various seed-cases, such as those of 
the convolvulus and rose. Histological specimens also, 
and desmids and diatoms, all suggest beautiful and varied 
forms of geometrical patterns. This has often occurred 
to us when examining the wonderfully varied and 
beautiful forms of the diatom family. It would, it seems 
to us, be very easy with multiplying backs to get large 
numbers of a 'form on one plate, and then to reproduce 
them by cheap photo-mechanical means, and though we 
have never yet heard of photographic wall-papers, yet 
there is no reason why they should not be manufactured, 
if made artistically. 

For hangings these same patterns might be woven in 
or even printed directly upon the materials, by the platino- 
type process. The company who brought forward that 
process keep prepared nainsook, why not other mate- 
D'Oyleys. rials ? For small things, such as d^Oyleys, an endless 
and pleasing variety might be introduced. 

In short, photography can and should be made ame- 
nable to the principles of decorative art, and employed 
legitimately in thousands of ways ; but the student must 
never forget that he must rigidly and resolutely keep 
within the bounds of his art, which bounds we have 
briefly indicated here. Common sense, taste, and study 
are his best safe-guards. In all attempts, however, let 
him go to nature for his suggestions; she, if he be 
humble and patient, will not be less lavish to him than 
to the painter. So we find ourselves at the end of this 
chapter, and our considerations on photography as 
applied to decorative art lead us to conclude that the 

Decorative Art. 265 

form in which it is at present chiefly applied, i.e. trans- 
parencies, is false in principle, and therefore undesir- 
able. We felt this long before we studied art at all, and 
although we made many opals and transparencies at one 
time, we soon gave them up as vanity and foolishness. 
Those, however, who with training and artistic feeling 
care to explore the undeveloped fields above indicated, 
will be sure to find many .new treasures. 


easier 10 ^ioe as ihs liz^i-earritz z>-. 
ker works. 

" In such an age as this, painting should be understood, not looked on 
with blind wonder, nor considered only as poetic inspiration, but as a 
pursuit, legitimate, scientific, and mechanical" 





WE wish from the first to make it clearly understood as The aim. 
to what is our object in comparing photography with the 
other pictorial arts. It is not to condemn any of the other 
arts as inadequate for artistic expression, for we hold 
that good art, as expressed even by a lead pencil, is better 
than bad art expressed on the largest of canvases, but 
our object is to inquire what position the technique of 
photography takes when regarded side by side with the 
methods and limits of each of the pictorial arts. The 
earliest pictorial expressions of the human mind were, as 
we all know, rude rock-scratchings in the form of out- Eock 
line. This outline drawing served the earliest nations, scratch - 
as it still serves children, to express in a conventional " 

. . ,. .. T . ., f \ f . T Outline 

way certain limited truths, tor the power or seeing and drawing. 

analyzing nature is of recent development, and is even 
now far from fully developed. Keeping this in mind, we 
must nevertheless not allow ourselves to despise these 
efforts of the undeveloped mind. Line drawing, it must 
be remembered, has nothing to do with tone. If you 
look at a line drawing of a figure by a great master, it sug- 
gests to you, in a certain limited way, the real thing, for 
the lines bound spaces, hence there is a suggestion of the 
solid figure. With almost any medium, even with pen, ink, 
and paper, an artist will often draw a subject in outline, to 
see " how it will come." Sculptors nearly always do this, 
but these men do not consider these outlines as finished 
works, but simply as an aid to their work, mere brief 
sketches suggestive of what shall be. Of course, such 
notes when done by a great artist become invaluable, as 
suggesting great truth of impression. Yet there are men 

2 7O Naturalistic Photography. 

who seem to stop at this stage, and revel in " beauty of 
line," or else they elaborate these drawings until they 
pass beyond the legitimate limits of the art by which 
they are expressed. 

We will now briefly enumerate these arts with their 

Lead Lead Pencil. The scale between the white and black 

pencil. i s verv H m ited, for, as any one who has drawn with lead 
pencil will remember, the lowest tones are grey as com- 
pared with dead black. They are also shiny because 
light is reflected by the plumbago. An artist can, 
however, express a suggestion of tone within a limited 
scale, and, notwithstanding this limitation, a first-rate 
lead pencil drawing may give a far truer impression of 
nature than a bad painting, and will accordingly rank 
higher artistically. 

Pen and Pen and Ink. The scale in this case is also limited and 
ink. there can be no tone, but an artist, by shading can give 

an impression of tone, as can be seen in the clever draw- 
ings by an artist in the " German Punch." Of course, 
as in lead pencil drawings, all subtle tonality is left out, 
the lightest tones being lost in white, and the darkest in 
black, but the suggestion may be a truthful impression if 
well done, and in such cases the work commands the 
greatest respect, ranking far higher than inferior work 
done with a more perfect technique. Sometimes washes 
are added to pen-and-ink drawings to increase the 
impression of tone. Here, again, the bad craftsman goes 
beyond the legitimate limits of the art, by the pen- 
rendering detail, and by the wash-rendering tone, impos- 
sibilities except in monochrome work. We have seen 
some detestable hybrids of this class, the result of the 
misspent energies of amateurs and others. 

Chalk. Chalk. This gives the artist greater scope, for his 

scale is greater, and, in addition, chalk is not shiny and 
unnatural. This material is generally used for large 
work, and is better suited to that purpose, for the line is 
not so regular and has more of the decision and indecision 
of a natural outline as seen in a figure standing against 
a background. By choosing an appropriately colored 

Photography a Pictorial Art. 271 

chalk an artist can give a potent suggestion of texture, 
and, therefore, of truthfulness. Chalk was formerly much 
used for studies, but charcoal has now largely taken its 

Lithography. In this art a peculiar stone is chosen, kitho. 
which has an affinity for water and grease. The stone is grap y * J 
drawn upon with a greasy, specially prepared litho- 

fraphic ink. From this many copies can be taken, 
or reproducing chalk drawings the method is worked a 
little differently. It is of little use now for original 
work, on account of the introduction of the cheaper, more 
certain, and more beautiful photographic processes. We 
are all only too well acquainted with the outcome of 
this process of lithography, chro mo-lithographs, mon- 
strosities which, it is needless to say, do not enter into 
the category of the fine arts. Chromo-lithography, 
however, has a commercial value, being very useful in 
the reproduction of patterns, &c. 

Engraving. This is drawing on metal with a burin in Line en- 
a special manner ; that is by pushing the burin away from graving, 
the operator. Considerable pressure must be exerte ; 
and it is evident that lines cut in this way must be formal, 
It is, perhaps, for this reason that it is scarcely ever used 
for original work, but only for. copying. The scale in 
this case is limited between the black ink and white 
paper, and is greater than in the arts above dealt with ; 
but there can be no subtleties of tone. Engravers supply 
this suggestion of tone by cross-hatching, and so suggest 
a natural impression, as can be seen in some of the land- 
scapes engraved from nature by Albert Durer. Personally 
we are but very little interested in engraving apart from 
its historical interest. Artistically, the early work of 
Durer, and some of that of the so-called " little masters " 
is, in our opinion, the best ever done. All the work 
and there is much of it which has overstepped the 
narrow limits of the art of line engraving is to us dis- 
tasteful, because it could have been so much better 
expressed by other methods. Engraving with a burin, 
even when assisted by dry point work, is always hard, 
f ormal, textureless, and without tonal subtlety ; while the 

272 Naturalistic Photography. 

quality of modern engravings, by which popular editions 
of well-known authors are illustrated, is to us positively 
unpleasing and false. There is at the present day a 
vigorous attempt to bolster up engraving, and give it a 
fictitious value, but we feel sure it is doomed. Such a 
narrow, limited, untrue method of expression could never 
live beyond the day of necessity, when there was no 
better mode of expression. That day is already past, as 
there exist more complete methods. A good pen-and- 
ink work by Du Maurier is, artistically, far better than 
any engraving Cousins ever did ; and as for the fearful 
travesties exposed for sale in dealer's windows, we can 
only wonder who buys them. Perhaps the same mild 
imbeciles who collect " old engravings " promiscuously, 
not for any art qualities they possess, for the best of them 
are bad in many ways, but in order to collect, and appear 
learned (?) and artistic (?) to their less gifted (in purse) 
brethren. Of all the painters and sculptors we have 
known, we have never found one really interested in the 
class of engravings we are now describing. 

Stippling, or engraving in dots, seems to us a yet 
worse device than cross-hatching. It is done with pre- 
pared needles, or a toothed wheel called a roulette. 
Stippling was by Bartolozzi and others combined with 
etching, and a hybrid was produced which, like all 
hybrids, was doomed to extinction. 

As compared with photo-etching for the reproduction 
of pictures, no one but a fanatic would maintain its 
superiority. By using orthochromatic plates relatively, 
true values or tone, and true texture can be rendered, 
and no translator steps in to add to, or subtract from, the 
originality of the work. The student will soon find as 
he studies nature and the best art together, that line en- 
graving is but a sorry method, its artificiality will soon 
disgust him, and no one with any real insight into the 
mysteries of nature can derive much pleasure from en- 
gravings, except, perhaps, from some -of the best of the 
simple line engravings, such as some of Durer's works. 
Wood en- Wood engraving. In wood cutting the parts left un- 
graving. cut print dark, and those that are hollowed out or cut 

Photography a Pictorial A rt. 273 

away do not print at all; thus, the white is cut out 
from a dark ground. The workman cuts with special 
graving- tools on a block of box- wood, cut sectionally. 
Durer's woodcuts are simply drawings on wood, parts of 
the wood being cut away, for in this way many could 
be readily printed. They were simply fac-similes of 
the lines of Durer's drawing, and had no artistic 
aim of their own. With Bewick, however, the matter Bewick, 
was different. He saw the limits of wood engraving, and 
kept resolutely within those limits, like the true artist 
he was. 

With Bewick the flat black and white spaces were the 
limitations, as we consider they are and always will ba 
for original work, notwithstanding the American school 
of wood engraving, of which we shall have something to 
say presently. The scale in wood engraving is limited by 
the ink and paper, and the suggestion of tone is got by 
representing the light greys as white, and the darker darks 
as blacks. There is no subtle tonality in Bewjck's work, 
and though there is much suggestion of nature and truth, 
the expression is limited. But here, as in other arts, 
directly the legitimate limit is overstepped the work be- 
comes bad. Bewick, of course, and a few of his pupils, did 
original work, but the modern wood engraver, though he 
expresses greater subtlety of tone, is, after all, only a 
fac-simile worker. In the American magazines the per- American 
fection of this fac-simile work is to be seen, and, in our 
opinion, this school started with the intention of imitating 
the delicacies of photography. That such work is most 
useful no one can doubt, but in our opinion it has out- 
stepped the proper limits of wood engraving, and therefore 
no longer interests us. It must not be.f orgotten, too, that 
the works are fac-simile work and not original. In fact, a 
good fac-simile wood engraver may be no artist at all. 
It serves a certain use certainly, but, judged by artistic 
standards, an intaglio copper-plate print produced by 
photography is far more satisfactory. Would, however, 
that all the art-craftsmen who work in fac-simile, kept up 
to the standard of the American engravers, for the feeble 
works of this class to be seen in this country in the book and 


274 Naturalistic Photography. 

pnper illustrations of the day are lamentable. They are 
travesties of nature ; but what more can be expected when 
a block is often cut into separate pieces, and engraved 
by different workmen? Lamentable, too, is it that many 
a good photograph, brought home by travellers from 
abroad, should be botched and ruined by these wood 

A great deal of cant has been talked lately about the 
harm done to engraving by photography. The harm 
was done long ago, when artists ceased to practise the 
art of engraving as an original art, as was done by 
Bewick and some few others, and when the work of cheap 
reproduction fell into the hands of craftsmen. If photo- 
graphic processes do anything, they will either raise 
the standard of fac-simile art-craft by competition, or, 
which would be, perhaps, as well, kill it altogether. For 
artists in wood engraving like Bewick there is always 
room ; and among the first to appreciate such work and 
to foster it, will be. the artist who works in photography ; 
he will understand the limits of the art, and appreciate 
any artist who uses it artistically. 

Etching. Etching. As the public become more educated in art 
matters, we find etching rapidly replacing line engraving, 
just as we think original photo-etching will in time 
replace etchings. 

Etching is drawing on zinc or copper with a needle, the 
plate being first prepared with a ground, the nature 
of which varies with different practitioners. Wax, bur- 
gundy pitch, and asphaltum form a common combination 
for producing a ground. This ground is often smoked to 
produce a uniform surface, and then the artist sketches 
on it as freely and lightly as he would on paper. The 
lines are afterwards bitten in by immersing the plate in 
acid. Some etchers assert that they etch whilst the plate 
is in the bath, but we cannot imagine such a method being 
very successful, for want of proper control over the work. 
Tone is produced by thickness of lines and by cross- 
hatching, and also by the printer in the manner of wiping 
the plate, I nd finally touches are otten added with a dry 
point. In i/ddition separate bitings can be given to a 

Photography a Pictorial Art. 275 

plate by " stopping out " the portion not requiring further 
biting,with some substance which resists the acid, usually 
a varnish. Another method is to silver the plate and cover 
it with a white wax ground, so that the etcher gets a dark 
line on a white surface. The plate is finally covered 
with a thin coating of steel by electricity, this process 
being called "acierage." This facing is given to the 
plate to resist the wear and tear of printing. 

Etching, it will be seen, is far more amenable to the 
artist's will than line engraving and wood-cutting. Still 
it has its limits, for in it all the subtleties of tone are 
wanting, and there is, therefore, imperfect modelling. 
The values cannot be relatively truly rendered, nor is tex- 
ture well rendered. All this great artists have recog- 
nized and have therefore resolutely confined themselves 
within the legitimate limits. The masters of etching, as 
Rembrandt in the past and Whistler in the present day, 
never try for delicacies of tone in their plates, but by line 
and cross-hatching, like an artist in pen and ink, they 
express themselves, and their works are beautiful and 
priceless. But as with all the other arts, so with etch- 
ing, inferior men have tried by this method to rival more 
complete methods, and the result has been failure. By 
complicated line work and by printing flat tones, etchers 
are daily striving to express in translation the perfect 
technique of painting, and the results are unsatisfactory. 
Here, again, we find that the art-craftsmen, the translators 
of pictures, and not original artists, are the chief sinners, 
and this is a fact to be carefully remembered. A good 
etching by Rembrandt or Whistler gives us a satisfac- 
tion we cannot well express ; but carefully elaborated 
etchings from pictures give us no satisfaction ; on the 
contrary, they have gone so far that they compel us to 
compare the work with a more complete technique, and 
the result is great disappointment. 

As mere art-craft for the translation of pictures, photo- 
etching will give etching points (points not ot taste but 
of artistic facts), and beat it hollow, as any first-rate 
judge will allow. The best etchers we have met are 
unanimous in condemning elaborated work in etching, 

T 2 

274 Naturalistic Photography. 

paper illustrations of the day are lamentable. They are 
travesties of nature ; but what more can be expected when 
a block is often cut into separate pieces, and engraved 
by different workmen? Lamentable, too, is it that many 
a good photograph, brought home by travellers from 
abroad, should be botched and ruined by these wood 

A great deal of cant has been talked lately about the 
harm done to engraving by photography. The harm 
was done long ago, when artists ceased to practise the 
art of engraving as an original art,, as was done by 
Bewick and some few others, and when the work of cheap 
reproduction fell into the hands of craftsmen. If photo- 
graphic processes do anything, they will either raise 
the standard of fac- simile art-craft by competition, or, 
which would be, perhaps, as well, kill it altogether. For 
artists in wood engraving like Bewick there is always 
room ; and among the first to appreciate such work and 
to foster it, will be.. the artist who works in photography ; 
he will understand the limits of the art, and appreciate 
any artist who uses it artistically. 

Etching. Etching. As the public become more educated in art 
matters, we find etching rapidly replacing line engraving, 
just as we think original photo-etching will in time 
replace etchings. 

Etching is drawing on zinc or copper with a needle, the 
plate being first prepared with a ground, the nature 
of which varies with different practitioners. Wax, bur- 
gundy pitch, and asphaltum form a common combination 
for producing a ground. This ground is often smoked to 
produce a uniform surface, and then the artist sketches 
on it as freely and lightly as he would on paper. The 
lines are afterwards bitten in by immersing the plate in 
acid. Some etchers assert that they etch whilst the plate 
is in the bath, but we cannot imagine such a method being 
very successful, for want of proper control over the work. 
Tone is produced by thickness of lines and by cross- 
hatching, and also by the printer in the manner of wiping 
the plate, I ad finally touches are otten added with a dry 
point. In addition separate bitings can be given to a 

Photography a Pictorial Art. 275 

plate by " stopping out >} the portion not requiring further 
biting,with some substance which resists the acid, usually 
a varnish. Another method is to silver the plate and cover 
it with a white wax ground, so that the etcher gets a dark 
line on a white surface. The plate is finally covered 
with a thin coating of steel by electricity, this process 
being called "acierage." This facing is given to the 
plate to resist the wear and tear of printing. 

Etching, it will be seen, is far more amenable to the 
artist's will than line engraving and wood-cutting. Still 
it has its limits, for in it all the subtleties of tone are 
wanting, and there is, therefore, imperfect modelling. 
The values cannot be relatively truly rendered, nor is tex- 
ture well rendered. All this great artists have recog- 
nized and have therefore resolutely confined themselves 
within the legitimate limits. The masters of etching, as 
Rembrandt in the past and Whistler in the present day, 
never try for delicacies of tone in their plates, but by line 
and cross-hatching, like an artist in pen and ink, they 
express themselves, and their works are beautiful and 
priceless. But as with all the other arts, so with etch- 
ing, inferior men have tried by this method to rival more 
complete methods, and the result has been failure. By 
complicated line work and by printing flat tones, etchers 
are daily striving to express in translation the perfect 
technique of painting, and the results are unsatisfactory. 
Here, again, we find that the art- crafts men, the translators 
of pictures, and not original artists, are the chief sinners, 
and this is a fact to be carefully remembered. A good 
etching by Rembrandt or Whistler gives us a satisfac- 
tion we cannot well express ; but carefully elaborated 
etchings from pictures give us no satisfaction; on the 
contrary, they have gone so far that they compel us to 
compare the work with a more complete technique, and 
the result is great disappointment. 

As mere art-craft for the translation of pictures, photo- 
etching will give etching points (points not oi: taste but 
of artistic facts), and beat it hollow, as any first-rate 
judge will allow. The best etchers we have met are 
uDanimous in condemning elaborated work in etching, 

T 2 


Naturalistic P \otography* 



and they themselves work within the limits of its 
technique. Equally averse are they to the hybrid process 
of combining etching 1 with photo-etching, a hybrid 
only practised by inferior men and appreciated by the 

We must now leave line work, for though, as we have 
shown, very subtle suggestions of tone can be obtained by 
the use of cross-hatching, still true tonality and modelling 
cannot be obtained by any save more perfect methods. 
Directly an artist has a method by which he can express 
subtle tonality, he has a great additional power. 

Charcoal. With this method the scale is limited as 
the black is not so deep as many other blacks used in the 
arts, but by its means delicate tonality can be obtained, 
but not the most delicate. The values too in a charcoal 
drawing are not true for this reason, because the most 
delicate light greys are lost ; neither do we like the tex- 
ture it gives. It is not true ; nevertheless the result is 
often very fine. We had quite lately the opportunity of 
comparing the charcoal drawing of a very fine subject 
with nature, and also with a very fine painting of the 
same subject, and our opinion is that the charcoal draw- 
ing suggested the scene better than any line method 
could have done, but the suggestion was very far off the 
suggestion offered by the painting. 

Monochrome Painting. A monochrome painting may 
be in any colour, but since the scale is so limited, say in 
red for example, and the effect, except for portraits, is 
so incongruous that no artist dares use it. Indian ink 
and sepia are the commonest colours used. Monochrome 
painting, did it portray the different colours, would fol- 
low the same laws as painting, and would have to be con- 
sidered from, the same stand-point. Therein then lies the 
difference, a good artist may express much in mono- 
chrome, and give the suggestion of nature to a very great 
extent, but he is limited by this method. Delicate 
tonality and modelling can be obtained, but there is 
an unnaturalness of the middle tints and an artificial 
look in the textures. Notwithstanding, very fine work 
is done in this way, especially by some of the modern 
French and Dutch painters. 

Photography a Pictorial Art. 277 

Aquatint, as its name implies, is a form of engraving Aquatint, 
best suited to reproduce water-colours. The plate 
is prepared in much the same way as it is for photo- 
etching, the acid biting between the dots of resin. 
This method is now rarely used. 

Mezzotint. In this process the plate is roughened all Mezzotint, 
over by an instrument called a ' ' cradle " or berceau. 
This is really a broad chisel with a cradle-shaped edge, on 
which are small rough edges. This is worked by the 
hand all over the plate until it is rough enough to hold 
iok. The scale in this method is wide, the blacks being 
very deep. The tones are formed by scraping away the 
ink by the engraver, the highest light being the deep- 
est. It gives a very good tonality, and is really the 
only rival to photo-etching, but the plate will not last well, 
thirty good prints often being all that can be taken from 
a plate. The engraver, too, has not sufficient control over 
his work. As a rule it is only used for fac-simile work, 
and not for original work. It will in our opinion be the 
last form -of engraving to succumb to photo-etching. It 
is better suited for portraiture than landscape work ; the 
mezzotints from Constable's paintings are very feeble and 

Photography. Now we come to photography, which Photo- 
possesses a technique more perfect than any of the arts S ra P n y 
yet treated of. Photography, in fact, stands at the 
top of the tone class of methods of expression ; so 
nearly perfect is its technique that in some respects 
it may be compared with the colour class. The scale 
here, too, is limited, but less so than that of any 
other black and white method. Its drawing is all but 
absolutely correct, that is if the lenses are properly used, as 
has been shown. It renders the values relatively correct if 
orthochromatic plates are used, and it renders texture per- 
fectly. Its one limitation is that it must always be worked 
from models ; but from what we have already said, we con- 
sider this no limit of consequence when the end in view is 
artistic expression. When, on the other hand, the end in 
view is utilitarian, this is, in certain cases, a limitation, but 
as we are considering it only as a method for artistic ex- 
pression, we do not now consider that side of the question. 

278 Naturalistic Photography. 

As a facsimile method, it is unrivalled, for some of the art- 
craftsmen who have worked in this direction have so per- 
fected it that little now remains to be done so far as 
copperplate work goes, though much remains to be done 
in connection with delicate blocks for the printing-press. 
As a recorder of scientific facts and as an adjunct to the 
traveller, it has no equal, for nothing need be allowed for 
the personal equation of the individual. Its immense 
value in all the sciences and arts has been touched upon. 
Critics opposed to photography, and they are now-a-days 
the old and prejudiced, are fond of citing Mr. P. GK 
Hamerton's reasons for not considering photography one 
of the pictorial arts. Some of his arguments were per- 
fectly admissible when he wrote them, but as he has 
not taken the trouble to correct them since, we suppose 
he still rests in the fancied security of having slain photo- 
graphy for ever. But photography was not killed by Mr. 
Hamerton. It could not resist him then, for it was but a 
little child, but now that it is well grown and can resist 
him it will do so through us here. 

Mr. Ha- Mr. Hamerton says when any new art is under con- 
merton sideration, we must ask, " Can it interpret nature ? Can 
criticised. ^ express emotions ? Can it express fact and truth and 
poetry ? Within what limit can it do these things ? and 
finally has any one with it expressed human knowledge 
and feeling ? Will it record the results of human obser- 
vation ? Has it ever been practised by great men, or do 
they pay much regard to it ? " 

Beginning, then, with question I. : 
Can it interpret nature ? Yes, that at any rate is the 
opinion of more than one good sculptor, painter, and photo- 
grapher, and plates can be produced which we challenge 
any one to prove are not interpretations of nature in the 
strictest sense of the word. 

II. Can it express emotions ? Yes, and so faithfully 
and subtilely that the late Charles Darwin used it to illus- 
trate from nature, his work " On the Expression of 
Emotions in Man and Animals." Of these photographs 
taken by Rejlander, Mr. Darwin writes in the work men- 
tioned, " Several of the figures in these seven heliotype 

Photography a Pictorial Art. 279 

plates have been reproduced from photographs, instead of 
from the original negatives ; and they are in consequence 
somewhat indistinct; nevertheless, they are faithful copies, 
and are much superior for my purpose to any drawing, 
however carefully executed/' 

III. Can it express fact and truth ? Yes, and there is 
no need fco say any more on this head, except that it can 
express fact and truth more perfectly than any other 
black and white process. It is not absolutely perfect, 
but no art is. 

IV. Within what limits can it do these things ? The 
answer to this we have shown in this work. 

V. Has it ever been practised by great men ? Yes, 
and is practised now by many of our greatest living 
painters and sculptors, whose names we could 

M. Adam Salomon, a sculptor of ability, a Chevalier Adam 
of the Legion of Honour, took the photographic Salomon's 
world by storm, by his portraits exhibited at the Paris P rtraits - 
Exhibition of 1867, and he continued, to practise it 
up to within a short time of his death. Let the best 
sculptors and painters be asked how they regard photo- 
graphy especially when they are at work on posthumous 
works. Finally we will give here an opinion on photo- 
graphy as written by an able landscape painter namely, 
T. F. Goodall. 

" Photography has undoubtedly played an important 
part in the development of modern art, both in figure 
and landscape. In landscapes we are inclined to think 
that the influence of photography was for a time hurt- 
ful, for this reason, painters were apt to. emulate the de- 
tail of the photograph, and lose the breadth of man's 
view of Nature in consequence. They did not take into 
account the fact that the lens commonly used was a more 
powerful mechanism than the human eye, or that it re- 
produced at once every detail of a scene with more dis- 
tinctness on the plate than the eye would on the retina, 
even if the attention was concentrated on one part only 
at a time, and that therefore the resulting picture was 
not a true representation of Nature, as impressed on the 

280 Naturalistic Photography. 

mind by human vision. But for artistic purposes tjiis 
may be remedied, and it appears to us that photogra- 
phers must take the point into consideration if they would 
use the camera as a means of artistic expression. 
Hitherto the chief aim of the photographer seems to 
have been a biting sharpness of detail in the negative, 
which is generally quite fatal to the result from an artis- 
tic point of view, for in breadth lies the beauty and sen- 
timent of landscape. To produce a picture the photo- 
grapher must select his lens and adjust his focus, so as 
to get an expression as nearly identical with the visual 
one as possible, and he must print in such good tone as 
will give the closest approximation to the values in nature. 
In all these matters the result will depend on the taste 
and intelligence of the author, and bear the impress 
of his mind. If that be commonplace, his negative will 
be so also ; if artistic, so will be his picture. There is 
no reason why photography, in capable hands, may not 
be made a means of interpreting nature second only in 
value to painting itself, destined to supersede all other 
black and white methods in bringing an extended know- 
ledge of and taste for art to the masses of the people. 
The prejudice existing against photography arises from 
the fact that hitherto it has been worked merely as a 
mechanical process ; but if by results it can show that it 
is worthy, it will rank as a fine art. Dr. Emerson was 
the first to advocate rationally the claims of photography 
to this distinction, and, artists will admit, has by his 
subsequent work made good his position so far as his 
own productions are concerned, There should be a 
great future for photography if followed on really artis- 
tic lines. It should be hailed as a most powerful ally 
by the modern school of painting, as by means of it 
people may be taught to perceive how false are many of 
the pictures they believe in, and how much more beauti- 
ful and interesting- is truth. From an art-educational 
point of view its value can scarcely be overrated ; much 
has been done, by photogravure and other processes of 
reproduction, to spread a knowledge of pictures, and 
there is no reason why the same methods should not be 

Photography a Pictorial Art. 281 

used for original work. A good photogravure is to be 
preferred to a bad painting or second-rate engraving, 
and is incomparably better than the odious chronaos 
and wretched prints with which so many walls are 

If, instead of being satisfied with mere topographical 
views or foreground sketches, the photographer has cul- 
tivated artistic feeling, means are at his command for 
communicating to others what has impressed himself, 
and he may produce work of permanent value. Every- 
thing depends on what he finds to say and how he tells 
it. If the operator has artistic insight, it will show itself 
in his negative, just as it would on his canvas, if he were 
a painter. The mechanical and chemical processes, the 
practical judgment necessary in timing his exposures, the 
skill and knowledge necessary in developing his plates ; 
these are his technique; but the art value of the result 
will depend on what he communicates to us by its aid. 
As long as his ideas of pictorial art are confined in land- 
scape to views of churches and ruins, rustic bridges and 
waterfalls, or topographical views of the haunts of 
tourists, taken from the guide-book point of view, 
and in figure to artificial compositions, reminding one of 
an amateur theatrical performance, so long will his work 
be destitute of artistic qualities, and therefore valueless, 
but- if he brings to his work a genuine appreciation of 
the picturesque in landscape and figure, and a knowledge 
of how so to place a subject on his plate as to convey 
his impressions to others, he may produce most beautiful 
and meritorious results. He must learn, as the painter 
has to do, to distinguish what in nature is really suitable 
for pictorial purposes, on account of beauty of form, or 
tone, from what merely gives him pleasure by some 
quality which, however impressive in nature, it is not 
possible to transfer to canvas. A picture being a 
design enclosed by four straight lines, can only please 
and impress by certain suitable decorative qualities in 
the subject. To know what will make a picture is one 
of the most difficult secrets in landscape art ; knowing 
just how much of a scene to take in, where to begin and 

282 Naturalistic Photography. 

where to end, decides whether the result will carry a 
distinct and complete impression, or be merely a hap- 
hazard study." 

What great artists elsewhere have thought of photo- 
graphy is shown by the following extract from one of J. 
F. Millet's letters to his friend Feuardent. After asking 
Feuardent to bring him some photographs from Italy, 
Millet continues, " In fact, bring whatever you find, 
figures and animals. Diaz's son, the one who died, 
brought some very good ones, sheep among other things. 
Of figures, take of course those that smack least of the 
Academy and the model in fact all that is good, ancient 
or modern." 

The daily use made of photography by artists is 
another proof of the good opinion in which it is held 
by them. You could not get these men to say a 
word in favour of chromo-lithography, because that is 
a hybrid craft with few possibilities. These questions 
being disposed of, we will proceed to discuss an asser- 
tion of Mr. Hamerton's, that photography is like a re- 
flection in a mirror. Now from what we have shown in 
this book, means are at the artist's command to influ- 
ence the final picture in every stage of its development. 
If an artist such as Carolus Duran, say, were thoroughly 
versed in photography, and a craftsman, like one of the 
numerous operators employed by the large photographic 
firms, were to be placed together, say on one of the Nor- 
folk Broads for a week, according to Mr. Hamerton's 
reflection theory, they would both return with work of 
the same quality, differing only in points of view ; for 
Duran's reflections would be the same as the crafts- 
man's, point of view always excepted. A theory that 
allows such an absurd application needs little comment, 
one remark only will we put forward. In what igno- 
rance of optics Mr. Hamerton has allowed himself to 
remain ! when every one knows that a reflection in a 
mirror is a virtual image, and does not exist. By pushing 
this theory to its logical conclusion, a monkey with a 
camera could produce as good pictures as Mr. Hamer- 
ton could make with the same instrument. 

Photography a Pictorial Art. 283 

In " Thoughts on Art " Mr. Hamerton speciously com- 
pares photography with painting. Why not compare it 
with etching ? It can never be compared with paint- 
ing until photography in natural colours is an accom- 
plished fact. Mr. Hamerton, after speaking of the 
limited scale of light in all art, goes on to say, " But look 
at poor photography's scale compared with the scale in 
painting/' Just so, but it has a much greater scale than 
any other black and white method, far greater than the 
scale of his pet etching. Why did he not state this ? 
Why did he ignore it? Further on Mr. Hamerton 
enunciates that if we expose for the glitter of the sea, 
everything on the bank will be without detail. It is 
unnecessary to say this is not so, and any good photo- 
grapher can easily prove this statement. Of course the 
only excuse for these untrue statements is that such 
marvellous strides have been made in what is called 
" instantaneous photography" since Mr, Hamerton com- 
mitted his last criticisms to paper (in 1873), that pro- 
bably he does not know that photographs can now be 
taken at midnight by a flash of light in a fraction of a 
second, and with very fair results, as any one can 
prove for himself. Mr. Hamerton finds too that the sum 
of detail in good topographical drawings is greater 
than that in a good photograph. Well, Mr. Hamerton 
may do so, just as some people see green as red, but all 
good photographers will laugh at the statement, and we 
challenge Mr. Hamerton that we will produce a greater 
sum of detail in a photograph of a set subject than he 
will by any amount of drawing, and consider it no 
great feat either. But this has nothing to do with 
the artistic value of photography, or with its comparison 
with painting. Mr. Hamerton is here comparing it with 
architectural drawing. 

Mr. Hamerton next says the drawing of mountains is 
false in photography. If that were so in 1860, it was Mr. 
Hamerton' s fault for ignorantly using his lens, for, as we 
have shown, lenses are true perspective delineators if 
correctly used. 

Finally Mr. Hamerton, in 1873, sums up his objections 

284 Naturalistic Photography. 

to photography from the purely artistic point, as 
follow : 

L <( It is false in local colour, putting all the lights and 
darks of natural colouring out of tone." With the aid of 
orthochromatic plates it does no such thing, as any 
reader can prove for himself by getting a chromograph 
with yellow, red, blue, or any other bright colours, photo- 
graphed by Mr. Dixon, of 112, Albany Street, London. 

II. " It is false in light, not being able to make those 
subdivisions in the scale which are necessary to relative 
truth." This is not so. It is false in light so far as all 
art is false in light, but photography can make more 
subtle distinctions in the scale than any other known 
black and white method. 

III. " It is false in perspective, and consequently in 
the proportions of forms." It is not. This remark con- 
victs Mr. Hamerton of ignorance of optics and the proper 
use of photographic lenses. Vide Cap. II. 

IY. "Its literalness, incapacity of selection, and 
emphasis, are antagonistic to the artistic spirit." Photo- 
graphy is not literal, as the flexible technique shows ; it is 
capable of selection almost to any extent, though, of 
course, it is incapable of leaving out a tree, and putting 
in an imaginary man. What an incapacity for emphasis 
means, we neither know nor care to know. 

Following in Mr. Hamerton's steps other critics have 
raised their objections to photography, and these we shall 
discuss briefly. 

"A. photograph," it has been said, " shows the art of 
nature rather than the art of the artist." This is mere 
nonsense, as the same remark might be applied equally 
well to all the fine arts. Nature does not jump into the 
camera, focus itself, expose itself, develop itself, and print 
itself. On the contrary, the artist, using photography as 
a medium, chooses his subject, selects his details, gene- 
ralizes the whole in the way we have shown, and thus gives 
his view of nature. This is not copying or imitating 
nature, but interpreting her, and this is all any artist 
can do, and how perfectly he does it, depends on his 
technique, and his knowledge of this technique; and the 
resulting picture, by whatever method expressed, will be 

Photography a Pictorial Art. 285 

beautiful proportionately to the beauty of the original and 
the ability of the artist. These remarks apply equally 
to the critics who call pictures "bits of nature cut out." 
There is no need to slay the slain, and give any further 
answer to the objection that photography is a mechanical 
process, if there were, it would be enough to remind the 
objectors that if twenty photographers were sent to a 
district of limited area, and told to take a given composi- 
tion, the result would be twenty different renderings. 
Photographs of any artistic quality have individuality as 
much as any other works of art, and of the few photo- 
graphers who send artistic work to our exhibitions, we 
would wager to tell by whom each picture is done. 
Of course, the ordinary art-craftsman has no indi- 
viduality, any more than the reproducer of an archi- 
tectural or mechanical drawing. But where an artist, 
uses photography to interpret nature, his work will 
always have individuality, and the strength of the 
-individuality will, of course, vary in proportion to his 

Photography has been called an " irresponsive 
medium." This is much the same as calling it a 
mechanical process, and, therefore, disposed of, we 
venture to think. A great paradox which has to be 
combatted, is the assumption that because photography is 
not " hand-work," as the public say, though we find there 
is very much "hand- work and head- work-in it therefore, 
it is not an Art language. This is a fallacy born of thought- 
lessness. The painter learns his technique in order to 
speak, and as more than one painter has told us, " paint- 
ing is a mental process," and as for the technique they 
could almost do that with their feet. So with photography, 
speaking artistically of it, it is a very severe mental pro- 
cess, and taxes all the artist's energies even after he has 
mastered his technique. The point is, what you have to 
say, and how to say it. It would be as reasonable to 
object to a poet printing his verse in type instead of 
writing it in old Gothic with a quill pen on asses' skin. 
Coupled with this accusation, goes that of want of origi- 
nality. The originality of a work of art, it should be need- 
less to say, refers to the originality of the thing expressed 

286 Naturalistic Photography. 

and the way it is expressed, whether it be in poetry, pho- 
tography, or painting, and the original artist is surely he 
who seizes new and subtle impressions from nature, 
" tears them forth from nature," as Durer said, and lays 
them before the world by means of the technique at his 
command. That one technique is more difficult than 
another to learn, no one will deny, but the greatest thoughts 
have been expressed by means of the simplest technique 
namely writing. 

As we have shown, all arts are limited, some in one 
way, some in another, two limitations of photography 
are that it "cannot express an intention" and "it must 
take whatever is before it." We shall endeavour to 
answer these objections, which we frankly allow are the 
only serious objections to be brought against it. "It 
cannot express an intention." This, at first sight, seems 
an insuperable objection, but on reflection it is no real 
objection at all when the object of photography is ar- 
tistic expression. As we pointed out in Book I., it is' 
our opinion that all the best art has been done direct 
from nature, and that no " intention " requires expression. 
No artist worthy of the name ever drew a picture evolved 
from his inner consciousness ; if it is a brief note to see 
how a thing will come ; it is either from nature, or from 
his remembrance of nature. The photographer then must 
compose on his ground glass or in nature, or if he wants 
to see how it will come, he too can draw the lines on his 
ground glass. But the great point is, such drawing is 
perfectly unnecessary for artistic purposes; only for 
architectural uses is it necessary, for the architect must 
draw a plan of his building before it can be built. This 
distinction has either been overlooked or speciously sup- 
pressed by Mr. Hamerton. But then we have nothing 
to do with architectural drawing ; and if in this instance 
photography cannot help the architectural draughtsman, 
yet there are hundreds of instances in scientific studies 
in which nothing can help so well as photography, for ex- 
ample, in astronomy, spectral analysis, bacteriology, &c., 
&c. Finally, we are not aware that sculpture can help 
the architectural draughtsman. The second objection that 

Photography a Pictorial Art. 287 

the camera will take everything- before it, is not of any 
vital importance. It only makes the field to select from 
more limited, and gives the artist greater credit when 
he does a good thing. And if we are true to one of 
our principles, namely, that the subject should so strike 
the artist that he wishes only to reproduce it, it is no 
objection at all, for a subject with an eyesore marring it 
would not, or should not, appeal to the artist sufficiently 
to make him wish to reproduce it. We will also give 
the opinion of a painter on this point. Mr. Goodall 
writes : " These two subjects serve well to illustrate 
how unnecessary it is to alter the natural arrangement 
of things in order to make a picture. Although they 
are literal transcripts, it is hard to find a line in them 
which could be altered with advantage. The designs 
presented by nature ready made, always interest us far 
more than the artificial compositions of painters who pick 
and choose, arrange and alter, the material around them 
in constructing their pictures. When a picture is patched 
together, as it were, a bit here and a bit there, whatever 
the gain in composition, there is always a more than 
corresponding loss in those little subtleties which give 
quality to the work. If the beauty of a subject in nature 
does not appeal to the painter with sufficient force to 
make him wish to paint it exactly as it is, he had better 
leave it alone altogether, and seek some other that does. 
A man must be moved too deeply by something to 
dream of improving it by alterations, before he can 
possibly paint a really good picture." But has not this 
very limitation its advantages as well as its disadvantages ? 
There can be no scamping or dishonest work, and the 
artist must always go to nature. Had the ancient Greeks 
known and handed down photography and a sculptor 
friend of ours is inclined to think they did have something 
of the kind there would not have followed the terrible 
decadence in art which came after them owing to the neg- 
lect of nature, as we have shown. Again, an immense power 
which photography possesses over any other art is the 
rapidity with which an effect can be secured. The 
painter is limited to a portion of the day his effect is 

288 Naturalistic Photography. 

only present at certain times, or his model tires ; but the 
artist working with photography, when he sees his effect 
is right, can secure it in the twinkling of an eye. This 
advantage over all the other arts far outweighs the limi- 
tation of the field of selection. 

It has been said, te The camera sees far more than the 
eye takes in at any given moment, and sees it with an 
impartiality for which there is no parallel in the human 
vision." This objection has been answered in the body 
of the work ; it only holds true with bad work, and with 
that we are in no way concerned. 

A kindly critic, who did us the honour of reviewing 
us in the Spectator, said if our " contention were true, 
painting would have said its last word, and sculpture 
would no doubt soon be superseded by some mechanical 
contrivance, which would be to clay and mai^ble what the 
camera is to plane surfaces." Now we must break a lance 
with this reviewer and gentleman ; we wish all reviewers 
deserved the last title. We fail to see why painting 
should have said its last word for our contention is 
true pace our reviewer. The great fact of colour 
alone places true painting as a method of expression 
far above any other method. When photographs can be 
taken in natural colours, then will be the time to discuss 
the probable dying groans of painting. As to sculpture, 
it seems to us useless to discuss the merits of " probable 
mechanical contrivances ; " when they are invented the 
time will come to discuss them. At present the only 
comparison that can be made is that between a cast of, 
say, a hand from life, and a modelled hand. When this 
comparison is made, the " cast from life " will be found 
poor and mean it is not a true impression. The 
modelled hand may be so, if the sculptor is good. It is 
of course needless to point out that the principle of tone 
holds in sculpture as in painting, but the cast from life 
cannot have subtleties of tone for a very obvious physio- 
logical reason, namely, reflex action. If you touch a 
hand with a foreign substance, reflex action is set up, 
and there is an alteration in the heights and depths of 
the modelling, and the play of light gives a different 

Photography a Pictorial Art. 289 

impression. Now, when a living hand is covered with 
plaster a rough model is obtained a model of its struc- 
ture merely, and all the subtleties of tone are lost. Those 
subtleties would, however, all be given in a photograph, 
for nothing is touched, and a true impression is rendered 
of the hand. What more hideous travesty of nature is 
there than a cast taken from a dead subject the cast 
being merely an exaggeration of the faults in a cast 
taken from life ? 

Here, then, we must leave photography at the head of 
the methods for interpreting nature in monochrome, and 
we feel sure that any one who comes to the study of 
photography with a rational and an unbiassed mind will 
admit there is no case to be made out against it as a 
means of artistic expression. This much has been 
allowed by very many of our friends, who are at the 
same time accomplished artists etchers, painters, and 

The student must remember, then, that a first-rate 
photograph, like a first-rate pencil drawing 1 , pen-and- 
ink drawing, etching, or mezzotint, is far and away 
superior to a second-rate painting. The greatest 
geniuses in art will admire the one and will not tole- 
rate the other ; but the student must also remember that 
a false tf picture " is worse than nothing. 

The student should acquaint himself with the best 
specimens of the various pictorial arts mentioned in this 
chapter, and he can do this with little difficulty by ob- 
taining a ticket for the print-room at the British 
Museum; while in the provinces there are no doubt good 
specimens at the local galleries. Cambridge, we know, 
is very rich in Rembrandt's work. The masters in each 
department whose work we recommend for study are Some 

In Lead Pencil Harding and Bonington in Engand, 
and Ingres in France. arts . 

Pen and Ink. Titian, Albert Durer, Rembrandt, 
Fortuny, Eousseau, abroad ; and among Englishmen 
Leech, Caldecott, I)e Maurier. 

Chalk. Da Vinci, Andrea del Sarto, Rembrandt,, 
Raphael, Titian, Constable and Millet. 

2 go Naturalistic Photography. 

Lithography. Harding. 

Chrome-lithography. Greg. 

Line Engraving. Albert Durer, and Cousins. 

Wood Engraving. Bewick, Thompson, and Linton. 

Facsimile Wood Engraving. " The Century/' Scrib- 
ner's, and Harper's Magazines. 

Etching. Rembrandt, Millet, Meryon, Raj on, and 

Facsimile Etching. Brunet-Debaines. 

Charcoal . Lhermitte. 

Monochrome Painting. Mauve and Eossi. 

Mezzotint. Turner's and Lupton's reproductions of 
some of the plates of Turner's " Liber Studiorum," 
Smith's reproductions of Sir Joshua Reynolds' pictures, 
and Lucas' plates after Constable. 

Photography. Adam Salomon, Rejlander, and Mrs. 

Photogravure in facsimile. A. Dawson, W. Colls, and 

Final. j^ must not be forgotten that water-colour drawing 

and etching have both been despised in their time by 
artists, dealers, and the public, but they have lived to 
conquer for themselves places of honour. The promising 
young goddess, photography, is but fifty years old. 
What prophet will venture to cast her horoscope for the 
year 2000 ? 


" Very few poets get their inspiration from nature. The majority of 
them have read other poets, and they use the same ideas, clothed in 
different language. The painter has to go directly to nature, or he is 
a mere copyist. He cannot paint his picture like somebody else. He 
must tell his own story if he has any to tell. Please to look out of 
the window ! You'll get something different from what you get out 
of books, for it never has been seen before ! " 



WE are continually receiving letters from correspondents asking Books on 
us to recommend them some books on art. art. 

Now we can deeply sympathize with these earnest fellow- 
workers, for at one period we wasted much time in vexation 
of mind in reading the works of " self-appointed preachers, 
who knew many things save their subject." When we en- 
deavoured to learn something of art we put the very same ques- 
tion to our teachers, and the answer came, " There is nothing 
worth reading ; some good things have been written by painters 
but they are old now, for art has developed greatly of late years, 
one thing only we can advise you, don't read anything not 
written by a practical man." 

When we came to consider the writings of artists, we found 
that but very little had been written by them, and we can only 
repeat to the student, with the full conviction of experience, 
that he must read nothing save that written by practical artists. 

The technique and practice of art can be taught in studios, Technique 
and its principles can be scientifically recorded, but the poetry ^ /art. 
of art cannot be taught, only hints can be thrown out. The 
poetic qualities which make an artist as distinguished from the 
craftsman are born in a man and cannot be acquired by any 
amount of training. It is for this reason we must suppose that 
artists have, as a rule, thrown out suggestions and hints rather 
than enunciated any laws: these hints and suggestions, then, 
coupled often with the rhapsodies of literary men, form the body 
of all writings on art. 

The only books we know of from which the student will ^ e c ^. 
derive some benefit are Leslie's " Life of John Constable." mended. 

William Hunt's " Talks about Art." This excellent little 
book is often contradictory and illogical, but nevertheless we 
heartily recommend it. 







In the body of this work we spoke of recommending a few 
books which every photographer should have in his library, 
and if he has no library he should at once make a modest 
beginning. The library is, to the intellectual man, the armoury 
wherein are kept the arms which he must wield in the battle 
for truth. 

Every photographic society in the world, worthy of the 
name, should collect all journals, pamphlets, and books 
bearing on photography, as well as all books illustrated by 
photography and photographic processes. Scrap-books should be 
kept in which are pasted all newspaper and magazine articles 
on photographic subjects. Photography is but young, and 
there is plenty of time to make such a collection complete. If 
all the numerous societies subscribed, it might be worth while 
to reprint whole volumes of rare journals. 

The numerous photographic societies in this country could 
easily get library subscriptions, or even organize entertainments 
amongst their members and friends to procure the necessary 
funds for a library. 

The Camera Club has set an admirable example in this direc- 
tion which will no doubt be followed. Among the books we 
should recommend the student to begin with are 

Captain Abney's Treatise on Photography, Longman and Co. 

Professor Tyndall's Lectures on Light, Longman and Co. 

Dr. Lommer's Optics and Light ") international 

Dr. Vogel's Chemistry of Light and Photography j fS; e 

The late Mr. Sawyer's ABC of Carbon Printing. The 
Autotype Company. 

Dr. Eder's Modern Dry Plates, Piper, Carter, and Co. 

Dr. Ganot's Physics, Longman and Co. 

Professor Koscoe's Lessons in Elementary Chemistry, MHC- 

The late Professor Bloxham's Laboratory Teaching, Mac- 
millan. \ 

Messrs. Hardwich and Taylor's Photographic Chemistry, 

Mr. Jerome Harrison's History of Photography , Triibner and 

Dr. Wilson's edition of Burnet's Treatise on Painting. 
This book can be obtained of Messrs. Lund and Co., St. John 
Street, Bradford. 

The late Mr. Baden Pritchard's Photographic Studios of 
F.urope, Piper, Carter, and Co. 

Appendix. 295 

Mr. Bolas' Cantor Lectures on Photo-mechanical Processes, 
Piper, Carter, and Co. 

Mr. Hodgson's Modern Methods of Book Illustration. Mr. 
Hodgson's was the first book on photo-mechanical processes, 
and it still remains one of the best. 

Dr. Liesgang's Manual of Carbon Printing, Sampson Low 
and Co. 

Messrs. Welford and Sturmey's Photographer's Indispensable 
Handbook. Ilitfe and Son. 

Mr. Chapman Jones' Science and Practice of Photography. 
Iliffe and Son. 

Traite Encyclopedique de Photographic, par Dr. Charles 
Fabre. Paris, Gauthier-Villars. 



(A Paper read at the Camera Club Conference, held in the 
rooms of the Society of Arts, London, on March 26th, 

Before beginning this paper I would fain ask of you two 
things, your attention and your charity, but especially your 
charity. The reception which you accord me, ladies and 
gentlemen, assures me you will give both, and I thank you 

Since all mental progress consists, as Mr. Herbert Spencer 
has shown, for the most part in differentiation, that is in the 
analysis of an unknown complex into known components, 
surely it were a folly to confuse any longer the aims of Science 
and Art. Eather should we endeavour to draw an indelible 
line of demarcation between them, for in this way we make 
mental progress, and Science and Art at the same time begin 
to gather together their scattered forces, each one taking under 
its standard those powers that belong to it, and thus becoming 
integrated, and necessarily stronger and more permanent ; for 
evolution is integration and differentiation passing into a 

296 Appen dix. 

coherent heterogeneity. Now, I do not mean to premise that 
this confusion between Science and Art exists everywhere, it 
does not. But I feel sure that it exists largely in the ever- 
increasing body of persons who practise photography. The 
majority of them have not thoroughly, nay, not even adequately, 
thought the matter out. It is obvious then, according to the 
teachings of evolution, that, if we are to make progress, this 
differentiation must be made, thoroughly understood, and 
rigidly adhered to by every practitioner of photography. Each 
one must have his aim clearly stamped upon his mind, whether 
it be the advancement of Science or the creation of works whose 
aim and end is to give aesthetic pleasure. Proceed we now to 
analyze the difference between the aims and ends of Science 
and Art. 

Let us first approach the subject from the scientific stand- 

Assuming that we have before us a living man, let us 
proceed together to study him scientifically, for the nonce 
imagining our minds to be virginal tablets, without score or 
scratch. Let us proceed first to record the colour of his skin, 
his hair and eyes, the texture of his skin, the relative posi- 
tions of the various orifices in his face, the number of his limbs, 
the various measurements of all these members. So we go on 
integrating and differentiating until we find that we have 
actually built up a science, ethnology. If we pursue the 
study, and begin to compare different races of men with each 
other, we find our ethnology extends to a more complex anthro- 

We next observe that the eyelids open and close, the lips 
open, sounds issue from the mouth, and our curiosity leads us 
to dissect a dead subject, and we find that beneath the skin, fat, f 
and superficial fascice there are muscles, each supplied with 
vessels and nerves. We trace these vessels and nerves to their 
common origins, and are led to the heart and brain. In short, 
we find the science of anatomy grows up under our hands, and 
if we go on with our studies we are led into microscopy. Then 
we begin to ponder on the reasons why the blood flows, on the 
reasons why the corrugator supercilii and depressores anguli 
oris act in weeping, the musculus superbus in practical arrogance, 
and the levator anguli oris in snarling or sneering. So we go 
on studying the functions of all the organs we find in our man", 
and lo ! we are deep in physiology; and if we go deeply enough 
we find the thread lost in the most complex problems of organic 

Appendix. 297 

chemistry and molecular physics. And so we might go on 
studying this man ; and if our lives were long enough, and if 
we had capacity enough, we should he led through a study of 
this man to a knowledge of all physical phenomena, so wonder- 
ful and beautiful is the all-pervading principle of the conservation 
of energy, and so indestructible is matter. As we proceeded 
with our studies we should have been observing, recording, 
positing hypotheses, and either proving or disproving them. In 
all these ways we should have been adding to the sum of know- 
ledge. And in the greatest steps we made in our advancement 
we should have made use of our constructive imagination, the 
highest intellectual power, according to recent psychologists. 

The results of these investigations, if we were wise, would 
have been recorded in the simplest and tersest language possible, 
for such is the language of Science. It is needless to point out 
that in these records of. our studies, as in the records of all 
scientific studies, too many facts could not possibly be registered. 
Every little fact is welcome in scientific study, so long as it is 
true. And thus the humblest scientific worker may help in the 
great work ; his mite is always acceptable. Such is, alas ! not 
the case with that jealous goddess, Art : she will have nothing 
to do with mediocrity. A bad work of art has no raison-d'&re ; 
it is worse than useless, it is harmful. 

To sum up, then, " Science," as Professor Huxley says, " is 
the knowledge of the laws of Nature obtained by observation, 
experiment, and reasoning. No line can be drawn between 
common knowledge of things and scientific knowledge; nor 
between common reasoning and scientific reasoning. In strict- 
ness, all accurate knowledge is Science, and all exact reasoning 
is scientific reasoning. The method of observation and ex- 
periment by which such great results are obtained in Science is 
identically the same as that which is employed by every one, 
every day of his life, but refined and rendered precise." 

Now let us turn to Art, and look at our imaginary man from 
the artistic standpoint. Assuming that we have learned the 
technique of some method of artistic expression, and that is 
part of the science we require, we will proceed with our work. 

Let us look at the figure before us from the sculptor's point 
of view. Now what is our mental attitude 1 We no longer 
care for many of the facts that vitally interested us when we 
were studying the man scientifically ; we care little about his 
anatomy, less about his physiology, and nothing at all about 
organic chemistry and molecular physics. We care nothing for 

298 Appendix. 

his morality, his thoughts, his habits and customs, his socio- 
logical history, in fact ; neither do we care about his ethno- 
logical characters. If he be a good model, it matters little 
whether he be Greek, Italian, or Circassian. But we do care, 
above all, for his type, his build, and the grace with which he 
comports himself for our aim is to make a statue like him, a 
statue possessing qualities that shall give aesthetic pleasure. 
For the raison-d'dre of a work of art ends with itself; there 
should be no ulterior motive beyond the giving of aesthetic 
pleasure to the most cultivated and sensitively refined natures. 

The first thing, then, we must do is to sit in judgment on our 
model. "Will he do for the purpose ? Are his features suitable 1 
Is he well modelled in all parts 1 Does he move easily and 
with grace ? If he fulfils all these conditions we take him. 
Then we watch his movements and seize on a beautiful pose. 
Now with our clay we begin to model him. As we go on with 
our work we begin to see that it is utterly impossible to record 
all the facts about him with our material, and we soon find it 
is undesirable to do so, nay, pernicious. We cannot model 
those hundreds of fine wrinkles, those thousands of hairs, those 
myriads of pores in the skin that we see before us. What, 
then, must we do? We obviously select some, the most 
salient, if we are wise, and leave out the rest. 

All at once the fundamental distinction between Science and 
Art dawns upon us. We cannot record too many facts in 
Science ; the fewer facts we record in Art, and yet express the 
subject so that it cannot be better expressed, the better. All the 
greatest artists have left out as much as possible. They have 
endeavoured to give a fine analysis of the model, and the Greeks 

It is beside the question to show how Science has exercised 
an injurious influence upon certain schools in art; but that 
would be very easy to do. At the same time, the best Art has 
been founded on scientific principles, that is, the physical 
facts have been true to nature. 

To sum up, then, Art is the selection, arrangement, and re- 
cording of certain facts, with the aim of giving aesthetic pleasure ; 
and it differs from Science fundamentally, in that as few facts 
are compatible with complete expression are chosen, and these 
are arranged so as to appeal to the emotional side of man's 
nature, whereas the scientific facts appeal to his intellectual 

But, as in many erroneous ideas that have had currency for 

Appendix. 299 

long, there lurks a germ of truth, so there lurks still a leaven of 
Art in Science and a leaven of Science in Art ; but in each 
these leavenings are subordinate, and not at the first blush 
appreciable. For example, in Science the facts can be recorded 
or demonstrated with selection, arrangement, and lucidity ; that 
is, the leaven of Art in Science. Whilst in Art the physical 
facts of nature must be truthfully rendered j that is, the leaven 
of Science in Art. 

And so we see there is a relationship between Science and 
Art, and yet they are as the poles asunder. 


We shall now endeavour to discuss briefly how our remarks 
apply to photography. Any student of photographic literature 
is well aware that numerous papers are constantly being 
published by persons who evidently are not aware of this radical 
distinction between Science and Art. 

The student will see it constantly advocated that every detail 
of a picture should be impartially rendered with a biting accu- 
racy, and this in all cases. This biting sharpness being, as 
Mr. T. F. Goodall, the landscape-painter, says, " Quite fatal 
from the artistic standpoint." If the rendering were always 
given sharply, the work would belong to the category of 
topography or the knowledge of places, that is Science. To 
continue, the student will find directions for producing an un- 
varying quality in his negatives. He will be told how negatives 
of low-toned effects may be made to give prints like negatives 
taken in bright sunshine ; in short, he will find that these 
writers have a scientific ideal, a sort of standard negative by 
which to gauge all others. And if these writers are questioned, 
the student will find the standard negative is one in which all 
detail is rendered with microscopic sharpness, and one taken 
evidently in the brightest sunshine. We once heard it seriously 
proposed that there should be some sort of standard lantern- 
slide. My allotted time is too brief to give further examples. 
Suffice it to say, that this unvarying standard negative would 
be admirable if Nature were unvarying in her moods ; until 
that comes to pass there must be as much variety in negatives 
as there are in different moods in Nature. 

It is, w r e think, because of the confusion of the aims of 
Science and Art that the majority of photographs fail either as 
scientific records or works of art. It would be easy to point 
out how the majority are false scientifically, and easier still to 

300 Appendix. 

show how they are simply devoid of all artistic qualities. They 
serve, however, as many have served, as topographical records 
of faces, buildings, and landscapes, but often incorrect records 
at that. It is carious and interesting to observe that such work 
always requires a name. It is a photograph of Mr. Jones, of 
Mont Blanc, or of the Houses of Parliament. On the other 
hand, a work of Art really requires no name, it speaks 
for itself. It has no burning desire to be christened, for its 
aim is to give the beholder aesthetic pleasure, and not to add to 
his knowledge or the Science of places, i.e. geography. The 
work of Art, it cannot too often be repeated, appeals to man's 
emotional side ; it has no wish to add to his knowledge to his 
Science. On the other hand, topographical works appeal to his 
intellectual side ; they refresh his memory of absent persons or 
landscapes, or they add to his knowledge. To anticipate criti- 
cism, I should like to say that of course in all mental processes 
the intellectual and emotional factors are inseparable, yet the 
one is always subordinated to the other. The emotional is 
subordinate when we are solving a mathematical problem, the 
intellectual is decidedly subordinate when we are making love. 
Psychologists have analyzed to a remarkable extent the intel- 
lectual phenomena, but the knowledge of the components of the 
sentiments or the emotional phenomena is, as Mr. Herbert 
Spencer says, "altogether vague in its outlines, and has a 
structure which continues indistinct even under the most 
patient introspection. Dim traces of different components may 
be discerned ; but the limitations both of the whole and of its 
parts are so faintly marked, and at the same time so entangled, 
that none but very general results can be reached." 

The chief thing, then, that I would impress upon all be- 
ginners is the necessity for beginning work with a clear dis- 
tinction between the aims and ends of Science and Art. When 
the art-student has acquired enough knowledge that is, 
Science to express what he wishes, let him, with jealous care, 
keep the scientific mental attitude, if 1 may so express it, far 
away. On the other hand, if the student's aim is scientific, let 
him cultivate rigidly scientific methods, and not weaken himself 
by attempting a compromise with Art. We in the photographic 
world should be either scientists or artists ; we should be aiming 
either to increase knowledge, that is, science, or to produce 
works whose aim and end is to give aesthetic pleasure. I do 
not imply any comparison between Science and Art to the 
advantage of either one. They are both of the highest worth, 

Appendix. 301 

and I admire all sincere, honest, and capable workers in either 
branch with impartiality. Bat I do not wish to see the aims 
and ends of the two confused, the workers weakened thereby, 
and, above all, the progress of both Science and Art hindered 
and delayed. 


Next I shall discuss briefly the ill-effects of a too sedulous 
study of Science upon an Art student. 

The first and, perhaps, the greatest of these ill-effects is the 
positive mental attitude that Science fosters. A scientist is 
only concerned with stating a fact clearly and simply ; he must 
tell the truth, and the whole truth. Now, a scientific study of 
photography, if pushed too far, leads, as a rule, to that state of 
mind which delights in a wealth of clearly-cut detail. The 
scientific photographer wishes to see the veins in a lily-leaf and 
the scales on a butterfly's wing. He looks, in fact, so closely, 
so microscopically, at the butterfly's wing, that he never sees 
the poetry of the life of the butterfly itself, as with buoyant 
wheelings it disappears in marriage flight over the lush grass 
and pink cuckoo-flowers of May. 

I feel sure that this general delight in detail, brilliant sun- 
shiny effect, glossy prints, &c., is chiefly due to the evolution 
of photography : these tastes have been developed with the art, 
from the silver plate of Daguerre to the double-albumenized 
paper of to-day. But, as the art develops, we find the love for 
gloss and detail giving way before platinotype prints and photo- 

The second great artistic evil engendered by Science, is the 
careless manner in which things are expressed. The scientist 
seeks for truth, and is often indifferent to its method of ex- 
pression. To him, tf Can you not wait upon the lunatic 1 " is 
as the late Matthew Arnold said, as good as, " Canst thou not 
minister to a mind diseased 1 ?" To the literary artist, on the 
other hand, these sentences are as the poles asunder, the one 
in bald truth, the other literature. They both mean the same 
thing; yet what a3sthetic pleasure we get from the one, and 
what a dull fact is, "Can you not wait upon the lunatic?" 
There are photographs and photographs ; the one giving as 
much pleasure as the literary sentence, the other being as dull 
as the matter-of-fact question. The student with understanding 
will see the fundamental and vital distinction between Science 
and Art as shown even in these two short sentences. 

302 Appendix. 

And now, ladies and gentlemen, I do not think I can do better 
than finish this section by quoting another passage from the 
writings of the late Matthew Arnold. 

"Deficit una mihi symmetria prisca. ' The antique sym- 
metry was the one thing wanting to me/ said Leonardo da 
Vinci, and he was an Italian. I will not presume to speak for 
the American, but I am sure that, in the Englishman, the want 
of this admirable symmetry of the Greeks is a thousand times 
more great and crying than n any Italian. The results of the 
want show themselves most glaringly, perhaps, in our archi- 
tecture, but they show themselves also in our art. Fit details 
strictly combined, in view of a large general result nobly con- 
ceived : that is just the beautiful s>jmmetria prisca of the 
Greeks, and it is just where we English fail, where all our art 
fails. Striking ideas we have, and well-executed details we 
have ; but that high symmetry which, with satisfying delightful 
effect, contains them, we seldom or never have. The glorious 
beauty of the Acropolis at Athens did not arise from single fine 
things stuck about on that hill, a statue here, a gateway there. 
No, it arose from all things being perfectly combined for a 
supreme total effect." 


And now I must finish my remarks. I have not perhaps 
told you very much, but if I have succeeded in impressing upon 
beginners and some others the vital and fundamental distinction 
between Science and Art, something will have been achieved. 
And if those students who find anything suggestive in my paper 
are by it led to look upon photography in future from a new 
mental attitude, something more important still will have been 
attained. For, in my humble opinion, though it is apparently 
but a little thing I have to tell, still its effect may be vital and 
far-reaching for many an honest worker, and if I have helped a 
few such, my labour will have been richly rewarded indeed. 


ABNEY, CAPTAIN, F.R.S., 13, 160, 

's fog-clearing solution, 


hyposulphite of soda 

eliminator, 175. 

on exposure, tables, 


" Photography with 

Emulsions," 162. 

" Treatise on Photo- 
graphy," 294. 

Abolition of medals, 226. 

Accidents and faults in dry 
plates, 174. 

to the camera, 132. 

Adam Salomon, 147, 252. 

on retouching, 


's portraits, 279. 

^Eolus, 254. 

Aerial perspective, 248. 

After-treatment of plates, 173. 

Agatha.rchos, 34. 

Aim of " Naturalistic Photo- 
graphy," 8, 29. 

Albums, 220. 

Alkaline developer, 170. 

"Amateur "and "Professional" 
photographers, 12. 

American art, 78. 

wood engraving, 273. 

Amount of landscape to be in- 
cluded in a picture, 255. 

Analysis, 17. 

Ancient Greek and Italian art, 

Anderson's " Pictorial Arts of 

Japan,'' 54. 

Angelo, Michael, 64, 93. 
Angle of view, 139. 
" Antiques " for tourists, 39. 
Apelles, 36. 
Apollodoros, 35. 
Apotheosis of Homer, 41. 
Apparatus, 141, 257. 
Appendix, I., 293. 

II., 295. 

Aquatint, 277. 
Aristotle, 23. 
Art, 17. 

among the Philistines, 52. 

and culture, 258. 

and legerdemain, 255. 

and photography, 5. 

at home, 258. 

blocks, 204. 

criticism, 39. 

division, 10. 

principles, 114. 

of feeling nature, 250. 

" Artist photographer," 254,257. 

Artistic, 18. 

" Artistic opals," 257. 

" Art- Science," 18. 

Artificial light, 147. 

Assyrian art, 32. 

bas-reliefs, 33. 

lion hunt, 33. 

Astigmatism, 100. 



Astronomical photography, 2. 
Atkinson, Dr., 22. 
Atmosphere, 115. 

BAD wood engraving, 255. 

Backgrounds, 146, 243. 

Bags, 129. 

Balance, 248. 

Barometer of Naturalism, 95. 

Baseboard of Camera, 126. 

Bastien-Lepage, 90. 

Beautiful poses, 256. 

Bewick, 70, 273. 

Binocular vision, 111. 

Biting process, A second, 216. 

Bitten plates, 212, 214, 216. 

Blind spot, 100. 

Blisters, 176. 

Bloxham's "Laboratory teach- 
ing," 162. 

Bolas' " Cantor Lectures," 295. 

Books on art, 293. 

recommended, 294. 

Boucher, 85. 

Bouquet, 157. 

Boy and thorn, 41. 

Branches of Photography, 8. 

Breadth, 18, 240, 255. 

Breton, Jules, 91. 

British Museum, 40. 

Brown fog, 176. 

Bruciaui's plaster casts, 93. 

Brunn, 35. 

Buddhism, 54. 

Bunsen, Professor, 158. 

Burnet's "Treatise on Paint- 
ing," 238: 

" Laws of Composi- 
tion," 238. 

Burns, Eobert, 24. 

Busy Insanity, 258. 

Byzantine art, 46. 

Cadett's studio-shutter, 146. 
Callcott, 77. 
Camera, 125. 

, choice of, 125, 126. 

clamp, 129. 

, hand, 132. 

Camera, length of, 127. 

, register test for, 132. 

, size of, 126. 

, square, 127. 

, studio, 128, 146. 

Camera obscura, 66, 149. 

Cameron, Mrs, 152, 164, 189. 

Canova, 94. 

Caracalla's bust, 40. 

Carbon printing, 191. 

Catacombs, 45. 

Cellini-Benvennto, 93. 

Chalk drawing, 270. 

" Character " in portraiture, 

Charcoal drawing, 276. 

Charlemagne, 47. 

Chemicals, 169. 

Chemical solutions, 142. 

Chemistry and Photography, . 

Chiaro-oscuro, 35, 239. 

Chinese Art, 54, 58. 

renascence, 55. 

Choice of district to work; in, 

lens, 136. 

Christmas Cards, 257. 

Cimabne, 49. 

Classification of Exposures, 154. 

Clays, 75. 

" Clearness," 259. 

Cloud negatives, 197. 

Cold process in platiuum print- 
ing, 194. 

College of Photography, 13. 

Collotypes, &c., 205. 

Colls, W. L., 209. 

on Photogravure, 


Colour, 18, 108. 

, differences of, 108. 

of Platinotype prints, 


of landscape in sun- 
shine, 257. 

Combination printing, 197, 199. 
Commercial groups, 244. 
Commodus' bust, 41. 
Composite photography, 137. 



Composition, 237, 238, 240, 248. 

Constable, 75, 227, 268. 

Constable's dicta on art, 75. 

Contents of " Naturalistic Pho- 
tography," 8. 

Cooke, 77. 

Copper-plate printing, 210. 

Copy of schedule for copyright- 
ing, 222. 

Copyright, 221. 

Cordianus' bust, 40. 

Corot, 85. 

Correggio, 65. 

Cover for developing dish, 142. 

Cox, David, 73. 

Creative artist, 19. 

Creswell, 77. 

Criticism, 29, 259. 

Critics, 259. 

Crome, Old, 75,76. 

Cuyp, 83. 

DAGUEEEE and the French 
Academy, 1. 

Dallmeyer's new long-focus 
lenses, 135. 

Damages for infringement of 
copyright, 224. 

Dark room and apparatus, 141. 

, ventilation of, 141. 

Darwin, Charles, on photo- 
graphs, 278. 

Daubigny, 86. 

Da Vinci, 27, 64. 

Dawson, A., 209. 

Decoration, D'Oyleys, 264. 

of hangings, 264. 

wa ll papers, 264. 

windows, 262. 

Decorative art, 260. 

enamels, 262. 

panels and friezes, 

261, 262. 

: r - tiles, 262, 

Defects in gelatine plates due 
to damp, 178. 

De Hooghe, 75, 83. 

De la Croix, 85. 

De la Eoche, 85. 

Del Sarto, Andrea, 65. 
Delia Eobia, 93. 
Dense negatives, 177. 
Deposits on the film, 178. 
Depth of focus," 139. 
Descamps, 85. 
Desideratum, A great, 206. 
Developing rule, A, 141, 168. 
Development, 162. 
byjdftififcial light, 


conditions in, 167. 

', method of, 167. 

-, slow, 167. 

De Wint, 73. 

Diagrammatic blocks and 
plates, 204. 

Diaphragm, 138. 

Direct and indirect vision, 

Direction of light, Law of, 102. 

Dirty backs of negatives, 178. 

Dishes, 142. 

Dispersion of light, 99. 

Dixon and Gray's Orthochro- 
matic Photography, 

Doctoring negatives, 189. 

Donatello, 92. 

Double-backs, 129. 

Drainage rack, 142, 

Drawingof photographic lenses, 
118, 136. 

Dull spots and pits on nega- 
tives, 179. 

Dulwich Gallery, 68, 69, 70. 

Duplicate plates, 173. 

Durer, Albert, 23, 61. 

Dutch Art, 80. 

EARLY Christian Art, 44 
Easel pictures, 35. 
Eastern Art, 52. 
Eder's, Dr.,Intensifier, 175. 

, "Modern dry plates. 


potash developer, 171. 

reducer, 177. 



Educated fight, 233,238. 
Edwards's, B. J., clearing solu- 

ti n, 177. 

plates, 182. 

yellow screens, 


Egypt, Ancient, works to be 
studied, 31. 

Egyptian art, 30. 

artists, 32. 

lions, 81. 

Emerson on ' Ventilation of the 
dark room," 141. 

's " Ammonia poison- 
ing,' 3 141. 

" An ideal photogra- 
phic exhibition," 227. 

" Photography ; a 

pictorial art," 9. 

" Pharyngitis and 

Photography," 141. 

Emperors' School, 46. 

Engineering and Photography, 

English Art, 69. 

sculpture, 94. 

v. French photogra- 
vure, 209. 

Enlargements, 200. 

Enlarging and tonality, 201. 

Enquiry into JSTaturalism in Art, 

Etching, 81, 274. 

Eupompos, 36. 

Evolution in Art, 61. 

Exhibitions, 225. 

Experiment for forming a 
rough rule for use of 
lenses, 136. 

Exposure, 154. 

, method of, 154. 

, variation of, 157. 

Exposures, classification of, 154. 
, lens and stop in, 157. 

, meteorological con- 
ditions in, 157, 

, no rule for, 159. 

, quick, 154, 155, 156. 

Exposures, tim^, 155. 

, shutter, 156. 

, tables of, 160. 

Expression, 252. 

FABIUS, 38. 

Fa.ling of prints, 192. 

Failure, 257. 

Falsity of photographic por- 
traits, 255. 

Fantin's flowers, 152. 

Fechner's Law, 107. 

Ferro-prussiate printing paper, 

Perron s-oxalate developer, 169. 

Fiddle-brown trees, 258. 

Figure and landscape, 251. 

Fine Art, 19. 

Finish, 257. 

Flare-spot, 139. 

"Flat and weak" negatives, 

Flemish Art, 69. 

Fluorescence, 100. 

Focussing, 101, 148. 

, example of, 150. 

, mental attitude in, 


f ru le for, 119, 150. 

- the eye, 101. 

Fog, 175. 

Forensic medicine and photo- 
graphy, 4. 

Forfeiture of pirated works, 224. 

Fort tiny, 68 

Foster's, W. Michael, Physio- 
logy, 97. 

Fovea Centralis, 101. 

Frames, 219. 

Framing, 218. 

French (Modern) Art, 84. 

Frilling, 176. 

Fuseli, 70. 

Fuzziness, 120. 


Gambling for medals, 227. 
Ganot's "Physics," 134. 
Gelatino-bromide paper, 192. 



Gelatino-chloride paper, 192. 

Geography and photography, 3. 

German (Modern) Art, 61, 68. 

Ghiberti, 92. 

Gibson Gallery, 43. 

Giotto, 49. 

Girtin, 73. 

Glass slabs, 143. 

Glazing a studio, 145. 

" Good Art," 256. 

Goodall, T. F., on colour, 18. 

, on composition, 


, " Mere trans- 
scripts of Nature," 26. 
,on photography, 


Good work, 257. 
Gothic Art, 48. 

Greek and Grseco-Roman sculp- 
ture, 39. 

and Italian Art, 33. 

chiaroscuro, 35 

coins, 42. 

- landscape art, 38. 

painting, 34. 

perspective, 35. 

scene-painting, 35. 

vases, mosaics, and stone 

paintings, 38. 
Green fog, 176 
Green plates, 252. 
Greuze, 85. 

Ground-glass pictures, 149. 
Groups, 244. 
Grown plates, 212. 
Guilds, The, 48, 50. 


Hamerton on Photography ,278. 

Hand cameras, 132. 

Hardwich and Taylor's "Pho- 
tographic Chemistry," 

Harrison, 78, 79. 

',$, J., "History of Pho- 

togr^phy," 294. 

Head-re 4s, 146. 

Heffiicr, 68 

Helmholtz, Professor, 103, 108, 

109, 110, 111. 

Henderson's enamels, 262. 
Hering's theory, 108. 
Hick's opaque measuring- 
glasses, 142. 
" High Art," 20, 185. 
Hints on copper-plate printing, 

Hints on development, 164, 165. 

lenses, 140. 

photo-etching, 210. 

pictorial art, 254. 

platinotype printing, 

Historical value of Assyrian 

bas-reliefs, 33. 

History of Greek painting, 34. 
Hobbema, 83. 
Hodgson's " Modern methods of 

book illustration," 294. 
Hogarth, 69. 
Hokusai, 58. 
Holbein, Hans, 63. 
Homer's bust, 41. 
Hood for camera, 128. 
Horizon line, 44. 
Horse of Selene, 42. 
Hunt's, W., "Talks on Art," 

79, 124, 292. 
Hydrokinone developer, 171. 

IDEAL, 20. 
Idealism, 29. 
Imaginative, 22. 
Impression, 118, 249. 
Impressionism, 22. 
Impressionists, Modern, 120. 
Impressions v. absolute fact. 


Index, 303. 
Individuality, 258. 
Indoor work, 243. 
Industrial arts and photography. 


Industrial division, 11. 
Ingres, 85. 
Intensification, 175. 




Intensity of lenses, 138. 

light, 103. 

Interiors, 257. 
Interpreting nature, 22. 
Introduction, 1. 
Israels, Josef, 83. 
Ivan the Terrible, 47. 

JAPANESE Art, 54, 58. 

-, 1st Period, 54. 

, 2nd Period, 54. 

, 3rd Period, 55. 

1 4th Period, 57. 

at British Mu- 
seum, 58. 


Japers at photography, 259. 
Jewellery, 244. 
Justinian, 46. 

Kauffman, 70. 
Ivaulbach, 68. 
Korin, 57. 

LAMP for developing-room, 195. 

, travelling, 142. 

Landscape, 245. 
Landseer, 77. 

's lions, 31. 

Lantern slides, 202, 203. 
Law of projection, 102. 

corresponding points, 102. 

visible direction, 103. 

Laws of composition, 237. 
Lawrence, Sir Thos., 120. 
Lea, Carey, Dr., 180. 
Lead-pencil drawing, 270. 
Le Brun, 84. 

Le Conte's, Prof., Division, 98. 
Lenses, 134. 

for special purposes, 137. 

recommended, 135. 

U Envoi, 266 269. 
Leslie, 77. 

's "Life of Constable,"293. 

Lewes, G. H., 20. 
Lhermitte, 91. 

Libraries and Photography, 4. 
Liesgang's '' Manual of Carbon 

Printing," 295. 
" Life " of the model, 256. 
Light, 98. 

Lighting of picture, 118. 
Limits of art, 256. 
Limpet-shell markings, 178. 
" Lines," 247. 
Line Engraving, 271. 
Linnell, 77. 
Lithography, 271. 
Little Masters, 271. 
Local colour, 22. 

development, 171 

Lommer's, Dr., " Optics and 

Light," 294. 
Lorraine, Claude, 84. 
Low-Art, 22. 
Ludius, 38. 


Macula lutea, 101. 

Makart, 68. 

Man and vulgarity, 254. 

Marblings in negatives, 178. 

Masks, 199. 

Mason, 77. 

Massy s, Quintin, 60. 

Masters, 96. 

Masters of the minor arts, 289. 

Matahei, 56. 

Material for dresses, 244. 

Measuring-glasses, 142. 

Medals, Art, 226. 

Mediaeval Art, 47. 

, glass paintings, 48. 

, guilds, 48, 50. 

, miniaturists. 47. 

Medical and Biological Photo- 
graphy, 3. 

Meicho, 55. 

Melanthios, 36. 

Merit of photographs, 254. 

Metallic patches on negatives, 

Meteorology and Photography, 
3, 157. 



Meteorological conditions and 
development, 167. 

Method of copyrighting, 221. 

reproducing nega- 
tives, from nature for 
copperplate process, 

Mezzotint engraving, 277. 

Microscopy and Photography,2. 

Military and Naval Photo- 
Millet, Jean Francois, 44, 86, 

's dicta on art, 86. 

Miniatures, 46. 

Modern French School of 
Painting, 43, 91. 



Modified stops, 138. 

Mohammedan Art, 52. 

Monarchies of Western Asia, 32. 

Monochrome Painting, 276. 

Morland, 70. 

Mosaics, 45, 46. 

Mouldings, 219. 

Mountants, 218. 

Mounting, 218. 

Monnts, 219. 

Miiller, 77. 

Miiller's Law, 102. 

Mulready, 77. 

Munkacsy, 68. 

Murillo, 68. 

Muy bridge's canteringhorse, 42. 

photographs, 161. 

Mystery of Nature, 257. 


National Gallery, 60, 63, 65, 66, 

67, 69, 73, 77, 80, 83. 
Naturalism, 22. 

in Art, 28. ^ 

in decorative Art, 

Naturalistic photography, 259. 

wor k, 258. ' 

Nature and photography, 259. 
pictures, 258. 

Nature and sanity, 258. 
Nature of a copyright, 223. 
Negative finishing, 179. 
Negatives for decorative work, 


Nero's bust, 40. 
Newton, Sir W. J., 152. 
Nicpl, Dr., on sensitometer, 160. 
Ni 0, The, 54. 
Nobuzane, 55. 
Nude, 54. 

OKIO, 57. 

On breadth and simplicity,. 255. 

copyright agreement, 221. 

" form,'; 256. 

" going in for photography," 


impression andf act, 11 8, 131. 

opinions on art, 258. 

publishing, 257. 

reproduction, 256. 

studying photography, 256. 

success, 257. 
Optic nerves, 97. 
Optics, 134. 
Original Artist, 24. 
Origin of retouching, 186. 
Ortho-chromatic Photography, 

Out-door portraiture, 243. 

work, 243. 

" Outings," 246. 
Outline drawing, 269. 
Over-exposure, 174. 
Over-production, 169. 

PALEOLITHIC stone scratching!?, 

Pamphilos, 36. 

Paper negatives, 180. 

Paris Salon, 91. 

Parrhasios, 35. 

Parthenon Frieze, 42. 

Pausias, 36. 

Pecuniary Penalties for in- 
fringing copyright,224. 

Pen and Ink drawing, 270, 

Perspective, 35, 112, 239. 



Perspective, four kinds of, 112. 
Pertinax's bust, 40. 
Phenomena of sight and art 
principles deducted 
therefrom, 97. 

Photographs as historical re- 
cords, 257. 
" Photographic," 24. 

haunts, 247. 

Libraries, 294. 

Society of Great 

Britain, 185, 227. 
"Photographies,'' Dr. Wilson's, 


Photographing Clouds, 198. 
Photography, 277. 

and Art, 259. 

a pictorial art, 


applied to deco- 
rative art, 261. 
Photo-etching, 207. 
Photo-mechanical printing pro- 
cesses, 204. 


of, 204. 

Pictorial Art, 230. 
Picture-buyers, 53. 
Pin-hole photography, 131. 
" Pisanello," 93. 
Pisano, Andrea, 92. 

, Niccola, 49, 92. 

, Nino, 92. 

, Vitture, 93. 

Plate-making, 163. 
Plates, 163. 
Plate- washer, 142. 
Platinotypes, 205. 
for book illustra- 
tion, 205. 

, framing of, 219. 

" sinking in " of, 


spotting, 195. 

; , texture of, 195. 

Platinotype Company, 195. 

, new cold 

process, 194. 
Poetry in works of art, 250. 

Point of sight, 254. 

Poitevin's method of enamel- 
ling. 263. 

Polygnotos, 34. 

Portraits taken with rapid recti- 
linear lens, 137. 

Portraiture, 243, 252. 

in studio, 252. 

Posthumous portraits and busts. 

Poussin, 84. 

Practical Hints, 254. 

Preface, V. 

Pre-Eaphaelites (modern), 25. 

Prettiness, 2o6. 

Principles of studio lighting, 

of Decorative art, 261. 

Printing, 191. 

frames, 143. 

clouds, 198. 

papers, 191. 

Prints, 191. 

, carbon-, 191. 

, gelalino-chloride, 192. 

, gelatine- bromide, 192. 

, permanency of, 192. 

, platinotype, 191. 

, silver, 191. 

, tonality of, 192. 

Print-sellers, 7, 81. 

Pntchard's, Baden, " Studios of 
Europe," 262. 

Prizes for " set subjects," 254. 

Procrastination, 255. 

Prolonged and patchy fixings, 

Protogenes, 37. 

Pseudo-scientific photographers 
and art, 254. 

Psychological data of sight, 111. 

QUALITY, 24, 256. 

of greatness, 257. 

Qualities of a picture, 251. 

of good lenses, 140. 

Queer judges, 227. 



Realism. 24. 

Red-carbon process for decora- 
tive work, 262 

Red fog, 176. 

Reflections and shadows, 256. 

Reflectors, 146. 

Reform in exhibitions, 227. 

Registration of photographs, 

Rejlander, 0., 199. 

, on combination 

printing, 199. 

, on retouching, 


Relative tone or value, 2o. 

" Rembrandt pictures," 254. 

Rembrandt's etchings, 81. 

paintings. 80. 

Remedies for infringement of 
copyright, 224. 

Removal of varnish from nega- 
tives, 178. 

Renascence, European, 59. 

Replicas, 224. 

Resolution, 254. 

Retouching negatives, 184. 

, Adam Salomon on, 


. Cameron, Mrs., on, 


, Definition of, 184. 

, Rejlander on, 188. 

Retrospect of Photography, 2. 

Reubens. 69. 

Reynolds, Sir J., 69. 

ou rules, 241. 

Rhetoricians, Roman, 39 

Rhyparographi, The, 37. 

Ribera, 66. 

Rising front of camera, 129. 

Roller slides, 180. 

Roman Art, 38. 

Roscoe's "Lessons in Elemen- 
tary Chemistry," 162. 

Rousseau, 85. 

Ruby glass, 141. 

SABLE-HAJK brush, 142. 
Sargent, 78, 79. 

Sawyer's, J. R., " ABC of Car- 
bon Printing/' 294. 

Scales, 143. 

Scene-painting, 34. 

Science and Art, 295. 

division, 11. 

Scientific diagrams, 152. 

photographic work to 

be reconsidered, 136. 

Scratches on plates, 179. 

Sculpture, 92. 

Sea-air and dry plates, 178. 

Sensational in nature, 256. 

Sensitometer, Warneke's, 159. 

, Dr.Vogelon, 159. 

Sentiment, 25, 256. 

and poetry, 256. 

Sentimentality, 25. 

Sesshiu, 56. 

Setting up the Camera, 129. 

" Sharpness," 257. 

Shijo School, 57. 

Shiubun, 55. 

Sight, 7. 

Size of plate, 127. 

Slabs of glass, 143. 

Slow development, 167. 

Soga chokman, 56. 

Jasoku, 55. 

Soul, 25. 

South Kensington Museum, 74, 
77, 79, 93. 

Spanish (modern) Art, 67. 

Spherical aberration, 99. 

Spiller, A., " on permanency of 
gelatine-bromide prints," 

Spirit-Levels, 126. 

Spontaneity, 257. 

Spotting negatives, 189. 

prints, 195. 

Spurious pictures, 224. 

Standard developer, 170. 

Stansfield, 77. 

Stereoscopic Slides, 202. 

Stolen bits, 258. 

" Stopping down," 149. 

" Stops," 138. 

St. Peter's Statue at Rome, 45. 

3 I2 


Studio, 144. 

, building, 144. 

, camera, 128, 146. 

, Dr. Wilson's specifica- 
tions for, 144. 

effects, 147. 

furniture, 145. 

glazing, 145. 

lighting, 147. 

, objets d'art, 145. 

, principles of lighting, 

144, 252. 

, rule for lighting, 147. 

, top and side light, 144. 

walls, 145. 

Study of Chemistry, 162. 

Tone, 173. 

Subject of a picture, 250. 

Sun and shadows, 259. 

Supplementary poles, 129. 

Surveying and Photography, 3. 

Swing-backs, 130. 

, use of, 130. 

Swiss Art, 63. 

TABLE of contents, ix. 

Taine's " La philosophe de 1'avt 

Grec," 43. 

Teaching of Art, 294. 
Technical criticism, 43. 
Technique, 26, 123, 293. 

and practice, 123. 

Teniers, 69. 

Terminology, 17. 

Textures of printing papers, 195. 

Theban- Attic School, 36. 

Theon of Samos, 37. 

ThirteenthCentury Sketchbook, 


Thorwaldsen, 94. 
Thumb-screws, 126. 
Timanthes, 35. 
Timomachos, 38. 
Titian, 66. 

Tonality and development;, 164. 
Tone, 26, 115, 248. 
Topography, 258. 
Torso at British Museum, 41. 
Trajan's bust, 40. 

" Transcript of Nature," 26. 
Transparencies, 202. 
Transparent spots in negatives, 


Travelling-lamps, 142. 
" Treatise on Painting,"237, 238. 
Treatment of model, 244. 
Tripod he-ad, 128. 
Tripods, 128. 
Trovon, 86. 

Turbidity of media of the eye,l 00. 
Turner, 73. 

's " Frosty Morning," 74. 

Tyndall, Prof., 158. 

Tyndall's " Lectures on Light," 

12, 294. 

Typographic blocks, 205. 
Etching Company, 


UNDER exposure, 174. 
Undeveloped Islands, 179. 

VALUE of a picture, 256. 
Van der Velde, 83. 
Vandyck, 69. 
Yan Eyck, The brothers, 59. 

's portrait, 60. 

Vanity, 257. 

Van Ostade, 69, 82. 

Varnish, Dr. Carey Lea's, 180. 

, removal of, 178. 

Varnishing a negative, 179. 
Velasquez, 67. 
Verestchaxin, 68. 
View-finder, 138. 

maker, 100. 

Vigilance committees for plates, 


Vignetting, 196. 
Vogel, Dr., 177. 
, on chemical action 

of sky, 158. 
, exposure tables, 

Warneke's sensi- 

tometer, 159. 

plates, 182. 


3 [ 3 

Vulgarity, 255. 

WALKER, F., 77. 

Walker and Eastman films, 180. 

AYater-colours, 53, 71. 

Watteau, 84. 

Welfordand Sturmey's " Photo- 
Handbook," 295. 

Wet-plate process, 163. 

Whistler, J. M., 16, 78. 

, on mounts, 218. 

, " Art and Art 

critics," 78. 

Ten o'clock," 


Wilkie, 77. 

Wilkinson's " Ancient Egyp- 
tians,'* 32. 

Willis, W., Jun., 193. 

Wilson 69. 

Wilson's, Dr. E., " Bnrnet's 
Treatise on Painting," 
237, 294. 

Wilson's, Dr. E., " Photogra- 
phies," 144. 
Woermann, Dr., 28. 
Woltmann, Dr., 28 
Wo 'l-engraving, 71, 272. 
Work and faith. 255. 
" Working up" in oils, &c., 184. 
Wu-Tao-Tsz, 59. 

"YEAR'S ART for 1887," 223. 
Year-book of Photography and 

Photo News Almanac, 

1885-87, 141. 
and British 

Journal Almanac, 

1887, 141. 
Yellow fog, 176. 
Yellow stains on negative, 177 
Young Satyr at British 

Museum, 41. 

ZEUXIS, 35. 





" If any one wants to convert an artist to photography, he should present him with some of 
Emerson's picture* ; but, whether with this object or otherwise, we earnestly recommend eo"r>f 
photographer to obtain, ^nd to study, Emerson's books." Mr. W. J. Harrison in "The 
International Annual of Anthony's Photographic Bulletin' 1 for 1888. 


Life and Landscape Series. 

COLLECTORS and Librarians should take notice that all Dr. 
Emerson's previously published Works are strictly limited to the 
numbers herein advertised. After the completion of the adver- 
tised editions all plates and blocks will be at once destroyed. 
Intending purchasers should therefore complete their sets as 
soon as possible, before the works become scarce and advance in 
price. These works can be obtained through any bookseller or 
from the publishers direct. 

Separate Plate. 


Size of Plate, 14^ x 11 inches. India Proofs, mounted on plate paper, 
size 23 x 17, limited to 150 copies. Price 10s. 6d. each. 

Prints on plate paper, size 23| x 17 inches, 7s. 6d. each. Limited 
to 1000 copies. 

To be obtained of the AUTOTYPE COMPANY, 74, New Oxford Street, London. 


By P. H. EMERSON, B.A., M.B. (Cantab.), and T. F. GOODALL. 

Illustrated with Forty Plates from Nature, mounted on plate paper, 
size 17 x 12 inches. Edition de luxe, limited to 100 copies, bound in 
vellum, with black and gold decorations, plates mounted on India paper, 
and text printed on finest white paper. Price 10 10s. Ordinary 
Edition, handsomely bound in cloth, plates mounted on finest plate paper, 
and text printed on fine white paper, limited to 750 copies. Price 6 6s. 

This Work contains a valuable Essay on " Landscape," including Pho- 
tography, by the landscape painter T. F. Goodall, and should be studied 
by all Photographers. 

(SAMPSON Low & Co., Ld., St. Dunstan's House, Fetter Lane, E.G.) 

Opinions of the Press. 

" We feel grateful to Dr. Emerson and Mr. Goodall for a most fascinating volume. There is 
something singularly characteristic and attractive in the scenery of the Norfolk Broads, as there 
is much that is peculiar and picturesque in the manners of the primitive p .pulation. . . . The 

series of illustrations seem to embrace and exhaust the whole range of local subjects. We are 


that watery world, where the tumble-down cottage of the fisherman or the fowler hangs over the 


taken through wildernesses of wood and water, t rough sedgy solitudes, haunted by shy water- 
fowl, along winding river-reaches with wherries under sail. We are landed in quaint nooks of 

rushy creek ; we see the lonely farmhouse, with its sedge-thatched and straggling outbuildings, 
standing somewhat apart between marsh and cloudland ; or the sequestered hamlet huddled 
round the little church, with the rude spire which is a landmark for leagues along the water-ways. 
We are shown the amphibious people following their multifarious occupations, with their 
farming, and their fishing, and their strange fashions ot fishing. . . . The set of landscapes which 
c ose the vo'ume are excellent as works of art, and they give an admirable idea ot the somewhat 
melancholy charms of the scenery, when it does not happen to be lighted up by brilliant sun- 
shine." TAe Times. 

"Good wine needs no bush, and the Norfolk scenery needs no praise; but one may blamelessly 
sing in praise of good wine and the singing be but good, and write of or photpgraph Norfolk 
meritoriously. This Messrs. Emerson and Goodall have done, and done well, for which they 
deserve much thanks." Saturday Review. 

"The life depicted in this charming series of photographs is still redolent of the past. The wide 
e pause of flowery pasture-land, the smooth and pellucid waters, the picturesque cratt, and the 
hardy good-humoured Broadsmen with their nets and meaks, are admirably represented, while the 
descriptive letterpress will recall many of his, own experiences to the reader familiar with East 
Anglian waters." Morning Post. 

" Dr. Emerson has in this work appMed the art of photography in so triumphant a manner, that 
the fitful bree/.es are clearly caught on the water, and seen playing amongst the heads of the 
reeds. . . . We can vouch for their wonderful fidelity to Nature. Nothing like it has ever been 
published."-TAe F, e id 

" ' Lite and Landscape on the Norfolk Broads ' is a book of unique artistic interest . . . The 
prevailing tone of the pictures is restfnl and subdued. There is much of quiet cloudy sky and 
long evening light. And the general impression left by the illustrations, even when representing 
the characteristic industries of the Norfolk work-a-day world, is singularly free from anything 
approaching to hurry and turmoil The claims of photography to rank among the true means of 
artistic production were never better exhibited than in this series of studies. . . . They leave no 
possible doubt of Dr. Emerson's manipulatory skill, or of the tasteful discrimination of the fellow 
art-workers." The Globe. 

" ' Life and Landscape on the Norfolk Broads ' is the name of a really beautiful book. . . . The 
text is descriptive, and pleasantly descriptive, of the scenes reproduced from nature. . . . We have 
seldom, perhaps never, seen such successful studies of landscape made by any mechanical 
process. . " Daily New?. 

" It is enough to know that they are exquisitely beautiful. It has sometimes been contended that 
photography is not art. That view has had to be modified. It has been shown that in the hands 
of artists photography can be used with admirable effect. If proof of this be required, it will be 
found in this volume- There is nothing of the wooden stiffness of the old photographs about the 
pictures. . . . Some of them might be reproductions in monochrome of Corot's pictures. Light 
and shade are exquisitely managed. Every picture is arranged with the truest taste- . . . Then all 
the plates are redolent of the spirit of the scene."- Scotsman. 

"The volume of Plates from Nature ' which Messrs. Emerson and Goodall have just published 
to illustrate ' Life and Landscape on the Norfolk Broads' is an extraordinary achievement in 
photography. . - . Messrs. Emerson and Guodall have now taken them up, and mirrored their 
river highways and their shy retreats alike with a uniform success, which must have been the 
result of extraordinary skill and patience. - . . The peasants and watermen gave, it is clear, much 
information about life on the Broads, which the authors have occasionally worked up into very 
interesting letterpress." Pall Mall Gazette. 

" That beautiful series of forty plates, with their accompanying letterpress, illustrating ' Life and 
Landscape on the Norfolk Broads,' are an unanswerable refutation of those who say there is no art 
in photography. Mr. P. H. Emerson, B.A., and T. F. Guodall have been round the fens with 
camera and note-book to some purpose. . . . There is every quality in many of them of thoroughly 
good pictures. ... No episode or incident seems to be inaciessible to these skilful artists." Daily 

" They have studied the Broads in all seasons and in all aspects, in the full light of the cloudless 
summer mornings, and in the autumn evenings when the light grows dim, and the result is forty 
plates in platinotype, of great variety, of singular interest, and of remarkable beauty. . . . Both 
the authors of the illustrative text are accomplished writers, and their articles are of unusual 
merit." The School Board Chronicle. 

" ' Life and Landscape on the Norfolk Broads' is an epoch-making book: because such perfection 
of photography, such perfection of reproductive processes, and such perfection of artistic feeling 
have never before been brought together." Amateur Photographer. 

" Now and then in the past we ha*e seen occasional photographs such as Dr. Emerson now 
presents, but to him is due the credit of endeavouring to form a real and truthful school of photo- 
graphic representation-" Photographic News. 

" Thus we have fishermen and women engaged in all the phases of labour which the water- 
wastes of Norfolk afford, and all happily unconscious that they are standing for their portraits 
none of them starinsr into the camera in ordinary photographic fashion, but all pursuing their 
avocations in an unaffected and natural niflnner. This is a rare excellence, which is deserving of all 
praise, and the value of the plates as truthful illustrations of the ordinary work and demeanour of 
the people is greatly enhanced by the judgment and skill manifested in this particular. . . . The 
letterpress which accompanies the plates is not the least entertaining part of the book." 
Manchester Guardian. 


By P. H. EMERSON, B.A., M.B. (Cantab.). 

Being Twenty Plates in Photogravure reproduced from Dr. Emerson's 
Original Negatives by Messrs. Dawson & Co., Boussod, Valadon & Co., 
Walker & Boutall. and the Autotype Co., together with au Introductory 
Essay on Photography and Pictorial Art. The Plates are enclosed in a 
handsome Portfolio. Edition de luxe, limited to 50 numbered copies, 
Plates on India paper, size 20 X 16 inches. Price 5 5s. Ordinary 
Edition, limited to 550 copies, with Plates on fine plate paper, same size. 
Price 3 3s. 

N.B. The Author reserves the right of publishing separately, on plain. 
paper, any one of these Plates until the edition is completed, after that 
all plates will be destroyed. 

(GrEO. BELL & SON T , York Street, Covent Garden, W.C.) 

Opinions of the Press. 

" His compositions remind us more of paintings than of any mechanical reproductions of Nature. 
'Sunrise at Sea,' ' The Barley Sele,' 'The Faug >t-Cutters,' ' At Plough," A Winter's Morning,' 
and ' The Mangold Harvest,' are all well chosen and cleverly arranged compositions, and they show 
us that it is by no means so impossible to cclhibine in photography the human figure and natural 
landscape, and to tell a simple pictorial story, as is commonly believed. We congiatulate 
Mr. Emerson on this achievement : his work, at all events, deserves that praise which is due to 
those who try to raise the art to which they are devoted, and to carry it a step farther than is 
usually considered necessary. It is something to have carried photography a step farther in the 
direction of art, and Mr. Emerson is fairly entitled to claim this praise." Spectator. 

" He has spoken, as well as taken, twenty original negatives, and has done both to good 
purpose. A man must have penetrated into the inner circle of the lives of our East Anglian 
peasantry before he could have the chance of witnessing some of the scenes which he so 
sympathetically represents . . . Many will look at the beautiful series of plates in photogravure, 
and be charmed with the skill with which they have been manipulated. We find our highest 
pleasure in approving the caiefulness with which the real types have been selected and the 
'.environment' made appropriate." The Field. 

"Dr. Emerson's verv handsome folio of twenty plates of varied subjects, mostly found in the 
above county, is useful as showing what care in grouping, and tact and judgment in selecting 
points of view, will do towards producing effective pictures when the photographer combines the 
qualities referred to."Jrtist's Record. 

" Dr. Emerson . . . has been the teacher of a new school of art photography and he has now 
a lu-ge following, many of whom are endeavouring to do work as good and true to the 'school ' as 
the examples that are before us. ... As a source of study for amateur photographers and as a 
drawing-room book we highly recommend Life in Field and Fen ' to all our readers. As 
specimens of reproductions of photographs the plates are beyond praise, and the book is beauti- 
fully printed and got up in a most artistic manner." Amateur Photographer. 

" How far photography can go is well shown in this ca.efully prepared defence of it as an art." 

"When we say that Dr. Emerson has so used his camera as to truly represent Nature, we say 
the highest. . . . Having with rare judgment steered clear of doubtful and, to the camera, 
impossible subjects, Dr. Emerson has given us some delightful photographic pictures, which not 
only represent, but also interpret Nature. . . Dr. Emerson evidently intends to form a school in 
photography, and has resolved to show photography at its best." Photographic News. 

"Dr. Emerson, the producer of this fine portfolio of photogravures, represents to some extent a 
new effort to get home once more to Nature, and he enters into the battle as a photographer. . . . 
His seascapes are exquisite. . . . ' A Suffolk Dyke' (a charming [study ot river and Suffolk fen) 
and ' Breydon Water,' sea-fog coming up (a sweet picture, full of all the feeling of the place;. . . . 
The work is of a very choice character." t>ch<n,l noard chronicle. 
"Exquisite photographs exquisitely reproduced." Pall Mall Gazette. 

" They are in themselves of artistic merit as regards grouping and selection. Some of them, such 
as ' The Poacher' and the ' Dame's School,' are distinctly dramatic, and they are produced with 
much care and nicety by the automatic etching process." -Daily Telegraph. 

" It is marvellous how completely Dr. Emerson appears to have mastered the difficulties which 
have alit ended the use of the camera. No painter could have produced anything more charmingly 
true to Nature, more suggestive of real life and interest, than many of the pictures in this volume. 
They are admirably taken, with a carefulness in regard to light and shade that has rarely bee 
approached." The Scotsman. 


Separate Plate. 


Size of Plate, 22 X 17 inches, taken direct. 

India Prints on paper, 34 x 26 inches, limited to 100 copies. Price 
15.. a copy. 

Prints on fine plate paper, size 31 x 2(5, limited to 400 copies. 
Price 10s. a copy. 

After the advertised number has been pulled, the plate will be 

Copies to be obtained of the TYPOGRAPHIC ETCHING COMPANY, 3, Ludgate 
Circus Buildings, E. C. 

Opinions of the Press. 

" We have received ... a very beautif 1 reproduction of a picture by P. H. Emerson, which is a 
triumph both for photographer and process. . . . There is much poetical feelinsr in the prroupiiMf. . . . 
The general tone of the picture is a subdued red, and gives on . the idea of summer twilight." 
The Camera. 

" We have here a magnificent plate." Photographic News. 

" From the Typographic Etching Company we have a reproduction of a landscape by P. H. 
Emerson ... by a process . . . possessing decided individuality and capable of effect of light and 
atmosphe e which the present example shows may be s,ng estive and pleasii g. Here the figures ot 
the labourers and the laden wain are realized with considerable fidelity to the conditions of light 

ana air mat constitute a vague glimmering environment, ine cnarm 01 tranquillity tnat oeiongs 
to mild diffused light and spacious windless atmosphere can scarcely have suffered by translation 
in this instance." Saturday Review. 

"Whether in composition or general treatment it is a picture of which the artist may justly fee 
proud." British Journal of Photography. 

" We have received a large plate of a beautiful meadow scene also photographed by Mr. Emerson. 
It is indeed a June idyl of the marshes, with the women in picturesque attire piling upon a hay 
waggon the weet-scented grasses for transport to the neighbouring stackyard."- Scotsman. 

*' It is most certainly a splendid production, though its beauties dp not dawn upon one at the first 
glance, yet after a little contemplation we must confess that it is one of the best examples of 
photogravure we have ever seen." Photographers' World. 

A Series of Twelve Plates, depicting Pastoral Life in East 
A n^li a, reproduced in Autogravure from Original Negatives, 
with accompanying descriptive Notes, by the Author, P. H. 
EMEUSON, B.A., M.B. (Cantab.). 

Numbeted Proofs printed on India and Plate paper, outside size 17 X 13 
inches, in gold-lettered portfolio. Price 1 11s. Gd. 

The issue of these proofs is limited to 150. 

Prints on Plate paper, outside size 17 X 13 inches, in lettered port- 
folio. Price 1 Is. 

The issue of these Prints is limited to 600 copies. 

(AUTOTYPE Co., 74, New Oxford Street, London, W.) 

Press Notices. 

"It contains a dozen exquisite studies of the Broads and their borders reproduced by their well- 
known delicate piocess of autogravure. These p ctures are selected with true artistic feeli g, and 
in almost every case they have ' composed ' as perfectly as though they were arranged at will and 
not by Nature. There is but ne word which fitly indicates their merit, and that is one borrowed 
from their title idyllic." land and Water. 

' In a handsome, delicate portfolio, in white and gold, in choice and luxurious form, are presented 
a dozen deeply mounted autogravure plates, on India paper, from photographic negatives. They 
are loving studies of beloved aspects and incidents in the land of the fimous Broads, in every season 
of the year and in various phases of the quiet life of that country. Mr. Emerson's text, printed on 
fine old English rough quarto paper, poetically descriptive of the country and of the scenes of the 
pictures, makes beautiful bits oi' writing." School Hoard Chronicle. 

" In ' Idyls of the Norfolk Broads " Mr. P. H. Emerson still further adds to our knowledge of the 
pastoral life and landscape of the English Fens. He is in love with the country he calls it an 
earthly paradise ; and never did lover sing the praises of his mistress with more enthusiasm than 
does Mr. Emerson the distinctive beauties of this land of mists and marshes and sweet-scented 
meadows, with its industrious and homely people. . . . The scenes have been selected with an 
artist's eye, and are reprodxiced in really a delightful manner two especially are very pleasing- 
Flowers of the Mere,' in which we have the head of a charming little village maiden, and 'A Grey 
Day Pastoral,' the silvery tones of which have at least been suggested in black and white. 
Accompanying each plate is a concise, well-written description of the scenery depicted." Scotsman. 

" The present volume of proofs on India paper, reproducing original negatives by the autotype 
process, presents some of the most charming and characteristic types of East Anglian life and 
scenery." Daiiy Telegraph. 

'' That Mr. Emerson is an enthusiastic lover of the Norfolk Broads is very evident. To him East 
Norfolk is an earthly paradise, replete with all the elements that conduce to poetry and art. Of 
these the former finds an outcome in the descriptive letterpress, and the latter in twelve photographs, 
which illustrate one or other phases of life or nature in these broads. . . . 

" These pictures are, in most cases, full of feeling. In technical merit ' The Windmill ' excels. It 
is a very charming little picture, about lour inches square, representing a windmill standing close 
by a stream, boats lying at repose alongside. The engraving, printing, and general get-up are of a 
high order of merit." -British Journal of Photography. 

Mr. Emerson gives a poetic account, almost with the loving fervour of Virgil, of the beauties 
that he so much feels. . . . Altogether Mr. Emerson has in this last series done an excellent thing, 
and should the time come when photographers in general do similarly, artists will not speak of 
photography as they very often do at present."- Photographic News. 

" On the whole, the series is representative of the district of which Mr. Emerson writes with the 
knowledge that comes of enthusiastic study. 'The Mill,' 'The Haysel,' and the marshy pasture. 
No. 3, are charming pictures ' A Grey Day Pastoral' is a pleasing example of the cool, moist, and 
luminous effect of mild diffused light under a thin veiled sky. Mr. Emerson's text is pleasant 
reading."- Saturday Review. 

" Mr. Emerson is well known as the producer of some of our most artistic photographs and these 
' Idyls ' cannot fail to increase his reputation. . . . Each one is a delightful study. . . . The 
composition in each case is admirable, and they are printed in a manner which shows advance in 
photographic art." Artist. 

" This is truly a book for the drawing-room table. The introductory matter, as well as the 
descriptive text, give proof that Mr. Emerson is as successful a worker with pen as with sun-pencil, 
for the matter is full of poetic touches which only a true lover of Nature would be capable of, and 
which few could express in such a charming manner." The Camera. 


Illustrated with Thirty-two Photogravures and Fifteen 
smaller Illustrations. The text, divided into twenty-six 
chapters, treats of the East Anglian peasantry, and is full 
of interesting information of the habits and customs of the 
peasantry and nsherfolk, of their ghost stories, witchcraft, 
and of natural history, poaching, &c. 

The Edition de luxe, size 20 X 16 inches, is handsomely bound in vellum, 
with green morocco back, and black and gold decora'ions. The text ia 
printed on best English hand-made paper ; the small Illustrations, as well 
as the larger ones, are printed on India. This sumptuous Edition is 
limited to 75 numbered copies. Price 7 7s. a copy. 

The Ordinary Edition is strongly bound in cloth and leather. The 
Plates are printed on best plate paper, and the text is printed on best 
white paper. This Edition is strictly limited to 500 copies. Price 
5 5s. a copy. 

(SAMPSON Low & Co., Ld., St. Dunstan's House, Fetter Lane, E.G.) 

Press Opinions. 

"It is a monograph, pictorial and literary, on the Suffolk peasantry and fisherfolk a natural 
history of one of the most interesting of English race-types. . . . Hedger and ploughman, fisher and 
boor, as they are pictured in these exquisite engravings, they have a not too remote resemblance to 

the melancholy peasant of Millet. . . . The author has something of his eye for the bovine-human 
type, for the fine artistic gloom of life and mind of the fields." Daily >'<?. (Leader). 

"After a hasty glance at Mr. P. H.Emerson's handsome large quarto volume . . . one is disposed 
to characterize it as the prose of Dr. Jessop's ' Arcady.' On better acquaintance, we see that there is 
in Mr. Emerson's book also a great deal of the poetry of real life. We . . . claim that in ordinary 
village ways as sketched by Mr. Kmerson, and in village character, hard and uninviting as it seems 
to the outsider, there is ' i>oetry ' enough. ... He has plenty of quiet humour. ... Of some of the 
plates, which form such a feature in this volume, it is impossible to speak too highly." The Graphic. 

" It might almost be said to be descriptive by anecdote, of which the author seems to have a rare 
store, on every aspect of the subject with which he deals. His book is undoubtedly . . . ' A 
contribution to a natural history of the English peasantry and fisherfolk.' ... In this series of East 
Anglian books Mr. Emerson has distinctly elevated landscape photography His scenes are selected 
with the eye of a true artist. ... To a certain extent Mr. Emerson may be said in these pictures to 
have done for the peasantry of East Anglia what Jean Francois Millet did for those of his own 
country."- Scotsman. 

"In 'A Stiff Pull 'and 'In the Barley Harvest,' both capital subjects, capitally treated, he has 
been successful enough to make us wish that Millet had painted in >uffolk instead of at and about 
Chailly-en-Biere. In another plate, ' The Farm by the Broad,' he contrives to give us something 
of the effect of . . . a Corot. In . . . ' Going Out ' and . . . ' Coming Ashore ' he reminds us a little 
of Mesdag; in other plates . . . of the followers of Bastien Le Pa>.'e." Saturday Review. 

"The volume may be taken, therefore, as representing pretty completely the present state of the 
art of photo-engraving in England. . . . Mr. Emerson is to be congratulated on having brought 
distant East Anglia and its people before us with a completeness that has not been attempted with 
any other considerable portion of the British Islands." Manchester Guardian. 

41 The tales and interesting folk-lore are simply and pleasantly told. The philologist will find in 
these pages many fresh words and expressions ; the artist and naturalist many curious and novel 
observations. . . . The book is a valuable addition to the natural history of the English peasantry 
and fisherfolk."- Daily Telegraph. 

" Dr. Emerson's new book is one which no county family's library in Suffolk should be without. 
. . . Dr. Emerson has studied the Suffolk peasantry with conscientious thoroughness and approached 
his subject with sincere sympathy for the hardness of their life." Pall Mail Gazette. 

" All who have felt the peculiar attraction of East Anglian scenery are grateful to Dr. P. H. 
Emerson for his splendid photogravures. . . . This splendidly gol-up folio is an important work, 
reflecting hisjh credit on all concerned in its production. We hope Dr. Emerson will not allow his 
camera to lie idle. . . . Dr. Emerson has been a close observer of their character and intelligence, 
and has much that is curious to say." Westminster Review. 

" We have, in short, a delightful history of the inner life of the Norfolk and Suffolk peasant, and 
of the things dear to him, illustrated by such a series of truthful nature-pictures as is approxi- 
mated to in no other work of which we know, unless in Dr. Emerson's earlier series " Photographic 

" Mr. P. H. Emerson has produced a really valuable book. His text, descriptive of the life, 
superstitions, and character of Suffolk peasantry and fisherfolk, their stories of the land and 
stories of the sea are all of the greatest interest, and in many cases hyve the merit due to original 
inquiry and research. . . . Mr. tmerson. one of the foremost, and in some respects one of the most 
successful, of living photographers, has illustrated his large work with thirty-two photo- 
gravures . . . the full page plates are often of the highest merit ' The Clay Mill,' and especially 
' The Haymaker with Rake,' are so good in tone that they almost suggest the work of Millet. 
' Where winds the Dike,' reminds the spectator of Corot." Mayazme / drt. 

"This book is handsomely got up, well-bound, finely printed, and copiously illustrated. . . . His 
text is thoroughly well worth reading on account of ... its sardonic sense of humour, keen zest 
for the grotesque provincialisms of the people of out of-the-way districts, quick ear for laughable 
oddities of pronunciation, quick eyes for old-world customs and whimsicalities, and deep sympathy 
with the sufferings of the poor and helpless. . . . There are, too, many quaint anecdotes." 

" Dr. Emerson gives us not only a mass of valuable and interesting letterpress, but a collection of 
very remarkable photo-engravings. By no one has photography been more diligently and more 
successfully applied to illustrate not country scenes only, but country life. . . . His pictures never 
look like compositions indeed, he is as successful with some of his groups as with mere 
landscapes. . . . The letterpress . . . proving on every pae that he has not only lived among the 
people whom he describes, but that he is quite in touch with them. . . . ]>r. Emerson is a keen 
observer ot men as well as of nature. ... He is for the most part thoroughly reasonable. ... I 
am grateful to him, for I have learnt much from his book, and have been put in the way of (I 
hope) learning much more." Academy. 

" Nothing could well be better selected or executed than are the photograynres, and even the 
small illustrations of the book. In these he has caught 'the very form and spirit of the times ' in 
East Anglia. . . . His landscapes . . . recall Constable's pictures."- Fit-Id. 

" This is a delightful book . . . indeed, no one can study the illustrations and read the accompany- 
ing text without becoming imbued with the author's enthusiasm, and without feeling that he 
h s gained an entirely new insight into the character and surroundings of the English peasant. 
So artit-tic are the illustrations, witn their Corot-like softness of outline, that in future no book that 
deals with an unfamiliar country will seem complete without sucli aids. . . . There should be, ;:iid 
no doubt there will be, books such as this about every corner of the globe, and Mr. Emersou 
is to be thanked for setting the example." Kew Fork " Ration." 




By Dr. P. H. EMERSON. 
'Crown 8vo. Cloth, 5s. Second Edition, revised. 

Opinions of the Photographic Press. 

"In the work just issued, that the author endeavours himself to look directly at his subject 
without feeling himself bound by what others have said, constitutes the chief charm, and the 
reader soon finds he is not in contact with an author who is either an echo of others, or wishes 
to make his readers mere echoes of himself; indeed, the reader soon finds that his teacher is not 
one who expects and strives to mould his readers to his own image, but one who hopes to rather 
read them to think and act for themselves. If our author's spirit was more current among the 
teehnical teachers of our day, we would probably be in a more hopeful condition as regards future 
progress in the arts and crafts. The literary style of the work is excellent, and it contains a fund of 
useful information conveyed in a pleasant manner. . . . The mass of the book is composed of 
valuable and thoughtful essays on the various branches of photographic work both from the 
technical and the artistic aspects embodying the author's own experience. Altogether ' Natural- 
istic Photography ' is a work which should be possessed and read by every one interested in the 
practice of Photography." Photographic News. 

"Suffice it to say that the book is distinctive from any other book on photography, and there 
is reading worth studv on every page. We have been so fascinated by the freshness of language 
and the forcible way in which the author endeavours to bowl over o'd ideas and institute new 
ones, that we have had a difficulty at times in laying aside the admirably printed and got-up 
volume. We can only say that we heartily commend it to all who are interested in artistic 
photography, and who are not above learning from a master in the subject." Photograph^ Journ.ul. 

"When he comes to the part that really concerns photographers he is simply admirable . . . his 
boldness and originality of treatment, the ability with which he analyzes, arranges, and treats his 
subject, and his practical conclusions, are as charming as they are valuable, as pleasant to read as 
they will be useful to practise. . . . The latter part of the book on technique and practice is capital, 
and ought to meet with acceptance, and must be valuable to the photographic world. . . . Carefully 
thought out, ably written, boldly expressed, original in treatment, ' Naturalistic Photography ' is a 
valuable contribution to our literature." Photography. 

"Dr. Emerson's book has come at last. It was well worth waiting for, and fully justifies 
expectation". ... It has evidently already helped a considerable number of photographers to 
ideas. . . . The general acceptance of evolution principles, thought freed from trammels, and the 
adoption of scientific methods, tend to give us treatises in which a rational and natural basis for 
all phenomena is sought. Dr. Emerson's book is distinctly of this class. ... It is brimful of 
interest, and will furnish texts for art argument for some time to come, as well as afford solid 
instruction for the earnest student." Camera Club Journal. 

" C'estun volume a lire, ie dirai meme a relire, car le Dr. P. H. Emerson e*met des id6es qui 
lui sont tellement personnelles, qui souvent contredisent si fort les ide"es ge'ae'ralement recues, qu'il 
faut s'y reprendre a deux fois pour bien se rendre compte de sa maniere toute nouvelle d'apprecier 
1'art photographique. . . . II se compose d'une introduction, dans laquelle nous trouvons tout 
d'abord la preuve de 1'originalite' des ide"es de 1'auteur, &c. . . . On le voit, le sujet est traite" dans 
tous ses details, et ajoutons qu'il est trait^ d'une f'acon tres interessante. . . . II taut recorinaitre 
que la lecture de ce volume s'impose non seulement a ceux qui s'occupent de photographic, mais a 
tous ceux qui s'occupent de l'6tude des beaux-arts." Journal de V Industrie Photographique. 

" It is enough to say that we have read this beautifully got-up book with interest, and consider 
the opinions and many doctrines of the author very remarkable; and finally we can in good faith 
recommend the book." (Translation of part of review in the) Deutsche Photographen-Zeitung . 

"A most enjoyable book to every true lover of nature. . . . Erudite, embracing a very large 
field . . . this work must claim the careful attention of an earnest student . . . the ordinary text- 
book of photography is superseded, and technique and practice is dealt with in a thorough and 
somewhat original manner . . . the reader will find much which will be well worth careful 
Study." Photographic Art Journal. 

" ' Naturalistic Photography ' is a splendid contribution to photographic literature." 

Wilson's Photographic Magazine. 

" This book is highly to be recommended to those acquainted with the English language." 

(Translated from) Photographitche Ifittheilungen. 

" Cet ouvrage si bien e"tudi< sera lu avec grand fruit par les photographes amateurs, surtout aux- 
quels il est destine", car ils y trouveront les conseils pratiques dont ils tireront profit, soit dans 
atelier, soit dans les e"tudes en plein air." L' Amateur Photographe. 

" The practical part of Dr. Emerson's book is most admirable. . . . Dr. Emerson has produced 
some of the most superb work ever achieved by photography, and all who have admired his 
beautiful compositions are anxious to know his methods. He treats the subject in a clear and 
forcible way, and with mu<h ori ginality . . . . One reads and reads again with pleasure from page 
to page, and is often delighted with the novelty of presentation. The great virtue ot Dr. Emerson's 
book is its freshness. The reader is not wearied with reiteration of old hackneyed ideas and mis- 
application of stereotyped rules. It is a record of the author's own opinions." 

American Journal of Photography. 

" This book contains a greater amount of information on the artistic elements to be considered 
in photography than any that we know of. The author . . . has elucidated very concisely, yet also 
very fully, the principles which should be kept in view in making artistic and attractive photo- 
graphs. . . . In these days of amateur photography, when the mechanical and chemical manipula- 
tions necessary to obtain a good photograph are so easily acquired, a book like this, calling 
attention in simple language to the elementary conditions that should be observed in making 
artistic photographs, will be greatly appreciated. Scientific American. 

" Da Londra, coi tipi Sampson Low & Co.. ci giunge una recentissima pubblicazione del Sig. 
Emerson, coltito 'Naturalistic Photography, essolutamente originate ed interessante. L'autore 
si rivela per un artista intelligentissimo della fotografia e facendone la critica con sicurezza di 
giudizio e con esempii tratti, nella parte estetica, dai gran di maestri." 

Bollettino dell' Associa;ione degli Amatori di Fotografia da Roma. 





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Great Photographic Exhibition; The Gold Medal for Photo. Instrument, Melbourne 
International Exhibition. In 1887 The only Medal for Photo. Apparatus, Adelaide 
International Exhibition. In 1886 The only Gold Medal for Photo. Apparatus, Liverpool 
International Exhibition. 


Steam Factory 9, 10, 11, Fulwoods Rents, W.C. 



Photographic Apparatus Manufacturers, 



Is specially constructed for Tourists, combining 
both strength and lightness, is portable and per- 
fectly rigid, has long extending focus, reversing 
holder, double swing back with independent 
motions, rack and pinion focusing adjustment, 
best quality leather bellows, &c. 

The back and front can be fixed at any part of 
the baseboard, and are firmly fixed by clamping 

The ground glass focusing screen is protected 
by the baseboard when closed for travelling. 

N.B. The above camera is now fitted with 
Sands and Hunter's New Patent Swing Back. 
Price, including 3 double backs with spring fastenings : 
4ix3ior5x4 6*x4f 7x5or8x5 8x6* 10x8 12x10 15x12 

6 6s. 8 10s. 9 5s. 10 12 15 18 15s. 

Brass Binding Camera and 3 double backs: 8x5 and under, 1 10s.; 8 x6 to 10x8, 

2: 12x10, 2 5s.; 15x12. 3. 

Russia leather bellows, extra : 4 x 3i or 5 x 4, 17s. ; 6| x 4f to 8 x 5, 1 2s. ; 8 x 6|, 1 4s. ; 
10x8, 1 6s.; 12xlO,l 15s.; 15x12, 2 10s. 

Illustrated Catalogue post free. SANDS & HUNTER, LONDON. 

The Amateur pmE2d - 





In Field, Studio, Camp ; Afloat, Ashore ; in Town or Country ; at Home 
and Abroad. 

N.B. All communications respecting Advertisements to be addressed to 
PARRY & CRAWFORD, 52, Long Acre, LONDON, W.C, 

A dvertisements. 



or Fixed Focus Hand Apparatus (Patent). 

CAMEHA OPEIT Folded for the Pocket. Enclosed in Detective Case 

ready for use. Weight 12 ounces, with Roller Slide for 48 Pic- 

for Pictures 44 x 3 j. tures or three Double Backs. 

We would call special attention to the superiority of the results obtained with this little 
instrument over those of the many others introduced since we first made the Eclipse. As 
a first-class working instrument it still has no rival. 

Street Views, Groups, Architectural subjects, Landscapes, Panorama, &c., are obtained 
with marvellous detail, particularly suitable for Lantern Transparencies and for enlarging 
to an extraordinary extent. 

Detective Case for 

^rr^w-* Fitted with Three Double : Roller Slide, and 

blze - Comnletft. orm Roller Slide Backs fitted Camera open, or 

for 48 Pictures. 


8 , 


6$x 4f 

12 x 9 centimeters, 
16 x!2 
18 x!3 


Complete, one 

Double Back. 









7 10 

8 15 
8 15 

Screw and fitting plates to Camera for use on Stand, Clip, or Camera Rest, for Landscap? 
or Portrait, either size, 2/- 

for three Double Backs. 
1 13 

1 13 I 1 

1 18 6 150 

250 150 

1 16 150 

250 176 

280 1 10 


or Support for Hand Cameras. 

An Ingenious Substitute for a stand where it is impossible, through want of light or other 

causes, to obtain an instantaneous exposure. Instantly attaching the Camera to any 

wooden projection. Wo tourist should be without it. 

Weight. Size. Price, post free. 

For J-Plate Cameras 2% oz 4^x2 x fin 3/3 

For^-Plate , 6 3 , 7^x2xl 4/3 


See special circular, free on application to 

J. F. SHEW & CO., 88, NEWMAN ST., 'SSfS^- 




26, Calftorpe Street, Gray's Inn Road, LONDON. 

FOURTEEN PRIZE MEDALS have been awarded to G. HARE'S Cameras and Changing- 
Box for Excellence of Design and Workmanship. SILVER MEDAL awarded at the 
International Inventions Exhibition for Excellence in the manufacture of Cameras. 




The Best and most compact Camera ever Invented. Since its introduction, this Camera 

has received several important modifi- 
cations in construction. It stands un- 
rivalled for elegance, lightness, and 
general utility. It is specially adapted 
for use with the Eastman- Walker Roll 
Holder. A 6 x 4f Camera measures 
when closed 8x8x2^ in., weighs only 
4 Ibs., and extends to 17 in. The steady 
and increasing demand for this Camera 
is the best proof of its popularity. 
"Little need be said rf Mr. George Hare's well-known Patent Camera, except that it 

forms the model upon which nearly all the others in the market are based." Vide British 

Journal of Photography, August 28, 1885. 

Square, with Re- Brass 

versible Holder. Binding,. 
9 16 ... 140 
11 ... 160 

13 5 ... 1 10 

These prices include one Double Slide. 

Since this Camera has been introduced, it has been awarded THBEE SILVER 
MEDALS: at Brussels International Photographic Exhibition, 1883; at the Royal 
Cornwall Polytechnic Society, Falmouth; and at the INTERNATIONAL INVENTIONS 
EXHIBITION, 1SE5. Also Bronze Medal, Bristol International Exhibition, 1883 

G. HARE'S Improved Portable Bellows Camera. 


Size of 
6*x 4| 
7*x 5 

Square, with Re- r 
versible Holder. 
...1 726 
7 10 
8 15 


Size of 
10 x 8 

This Camera offers many advantages where a little extra weight and bulk is not objected 
to. It is very solid and firm in construction, and especially suited for India and other 
trying climates. 

PRICES, with one Double Slide and Hinged Focussing Screen : 

For Plates. 
6*x 4 
8*x 6* 
10 x 8 
12 xlO 
15 x!2 
18 X16 

Horizontal and 
7 18 
10 13 

13 6 
20 15 

Square, with 

Reversible Holder 

7 12 6 


10 16 

12 5 

15 10 




1 10 

2 10 

For Prices of Extra Dark Slides and Inner Frames, See Catalogue. 



HINTON'S FOLDING PLATE BACKS, 4000 sold in one year. 


HINTON'S PURE CHEMICALS, always reliable. 


all the best makers. 



Registered G.W.W. Trade Mark. 



Wholesale Landscape Photographers and 
Photographic Publishers, 


Catalogues and Price Lists Post Free on application. 




From Photographers' own Negatives carefully executed, by 
Richard Keene, so as to secure the BEST RESULTS. 


Price List Post Free on application to 





Field, Studio, Camp ; Afloat, Ashore ; in Town or Country ; at Home 

and Abroad. 

N.B. All communications respecting Advertisements to be addressed to 




rr 12 


A Popular Illustrated 

MATEUR 1 Jo " al 

Devoted to 

Photography and the 
kindred Arts. 



London : HAZELL, WATSON & VINEY, Ld., 52, Long Aere,W.C. 

And through all Newsagents and Photographic Dealers. 


1O/1O per year, 5/6 for Six Months 

A dvertisemcnis. 

Polytechnic School 




THE SCHOOL is open daily for Practical Instruction in all 

branches of PHOTOGRAPHY. The STUDIO and DAKK 

ROOMS are lit by Electricity, and the appliances are complete 
in every respect. 


s. d. 
In Dry Plate Photography and Silver Printing, until proficient ... 5 5 

,, Retouching ... ... ... ... ... ... 5 5 

,, Developing (special course) ... ... ... ... ... ... 2 12 6 

Carbon Printing 230 

Enlarging 220 

Platinum Printing 1 10 


Have been awarded to Students of the School at Exhibition*. 

A year's practical Training at the School is the best 
Photographic Education obtainable in the World. 




Have received the Highest Awards wherever Exhibited, 

' The Cameras of MEAGHEB deserve 
special Examination, as 
well for the perfection 
of their workmanship as 
for their perfect adapta- 
tion to the purpose for 
which they are de- 
signed." Yide Report 
of Jurors, Class IX., 
International Exhibi- 
tion, Paris. 

Fio. 1. 

FIG. 2. 

This Camera is Light, Portable, and quickly set up ready for use, and is 
perfectly rigid when extended. Fig. 1. shows the Camera packed up. 

Fig. 2 shows the 'Camera with Reversing Frame and Front extended. 
Each Camera is supplied with two Fronts which can bs raised or lowered as 


Specially constructed for use with Dry Plates. It is fitted with Single or 
Double Action Swing Back, and the focussing is effected by Screw or Back 
Adjustment. Prices, with Single Swing Back and three Double Backs, each 
carrying two Prepared Plates : 

For 6x4 ~ 515 

Ditto, with Double Swing Back, Reversing Frame, and Extending Front for 

Long Focus - 

For6*x4j ... 

Ditto, with Double Swing Back, Reversing Frame, and Extending Front for 

Long Focus ... ... 

For7*x5 ~ 

Ditto, with Double Swing Back, Reversing Frame, and Extending Front for 

Long Focus 

For 8* x 6* 

Ditto, with Double Swing Back, Reversing Frame, and Extending Front for 

Long Focus .. ~ 

For 10x8 .. - -. ... 

Ditto, with Double Swing Back, Reversing Frame, and Extending Front for 


BRASS-BINDING CAMERA, and Three Double Backs up to 
8*x6*, 1 8s.; 10x8, 1 13s. 


Illustrated Catalogues Post Free. Ten Per Cent. Discount for Cash with 





MANUFACTORY: 21, Southampton Row, High Holborn, LONDON, W,C. 

8 5 
7 1 

9 11 
7 5 


9 15 


10 5 


14 5 









Artists in Photography, 

74, Midland Road, Bedford. 

Messrs. R. & J. BECK. 
Dear Sirs, 

The No. 5 Lens, after severe testing-, has 
proved to be a Splendid and Reliable Instrument, and 
candidly we expected a good thing ; but with this Lens, 
for all the purposes we have tried it, the results are far 
above our expectations. During Twenty-five Years' ex- 
perience in Photography, only Lenses of the two Best 
Makers have been used. We can confidently say we 
prefer your Lens to any of the others we have. 
We are, Dear Sirs, yours respectively, 



R. & J. BECK, 68, ConddD, LOHNHL 


RETURN TO the circulation desk of any 
University of California Library 
or to the 

Bldg. 400, Richmond Field Station 
University of California 
Richmond, CA 94804-4698 

2-month loans may be renewed by calling 

1-year loans may be recharged by bringing books 

to NRLF 
Renewals and recharges may be made 4 days 

prior to due date 


APR 1 7 2006 


>00 pp., post free, 7 St 





CASH PRICES of thpri 



See descriptive Catalogue. 


for Cabinets, in snort rooms, 

dia.. 2f in,, distance 14 ft. 13 

for GabfhAfrsjip to 8^x65, dia. 
3^ in., disfanee.5tt.ft, 


for Cabinets upTKJA9x7, dia. 

4 in., distance 24 ft 27' 5* 

for Imperial Portraits and 10 x 8, 

dia. 4| in., focus 14 in 38 10 

for plates 15 x 12 and under, 

dia. 5 in., focus 18 in. ... ...50 

for plates 20x16 and under, 

dia. 6 in., focus 22 in 60 


Portraits 8x6f, Views 10x8, 

dia. 2^ in., focus 10^ in. ... $' 

, Portraits 10 x 8, Views 12 x 10 * /** 

dia. 2| in., focus 13 in. ... / >y? P /*C&/9 

, Portraits 12x10, Views 15' - ., 

dia. 3iin., focus 16 in. .. 
, Portraits 15x12, View 

dia. 4 in., focus " ir / ,. 16 

, Portraits 18 x " J / y V ' >> 20 

dia. 5 in., f / J / ,,21 

.Portrait? ,- ~. " j be had in , 

dia. 6i ~y /^ /* 

Size of View 
or Landscape. 

Size of Group 
or Portrait. 




4| by 3^ in. 

3* by 3| in. 

4 in_ 

3 15 

5 4 

, 3i,, 


4 10 

8 5 

, 4 


5 10 

8* 6^ 

, 5 

11 -, 


10 P 

, 6|,, 




, 8 





.eh size 
y 10 in. 




. 12 



. 16 




, 20 




ral Views in Confined 


i Equiv. 
I Focus. 



1 4 in. 

4 10 

4f )> 


5 10 


1 7 

7 10 



10 10 




14 , 




! 19 


irs for gter.eoscopic Views. 

for .Landscapes, pure and simple. 


'. 2, Ditto ditto Gin. iocus 2 ~b 

ct. Stereo. Lenses, 2 in. & 2|in. 

bcus 4 

itended for use with the Optical Lantern only. 
. 1 Lens, .li.gfiid If in, dia. with 

.lack Motion ...*" 4 4 

). 2 do. If ary3 2 in. do. do. 5 5 
ndensers SJin. dia^aaounted, ea. 5 5 
. Do. .'4?in. do. do-. ...-.6 6 



Largest Dimen- I Diameter 
sions of Plate. of Lenses. 

6|by 4 Jin. 










4 15 



10 5 

12 10 




Size of 


'* Price. 


5 by 4 

5| in. 






3 15 





4 10 





5 10 










8 10 





9 10 





10 10 





14 .0.. 




. 25 ' 

l" 0' -0 

For Distant. Objects and Views. 

Largest Dimen- 
sions of Plate. 

by 4 in. 

of Lenses, 









Equiv. | 


9 in. 4 10 
12 ,* 5 15 
7 10 
9 10 
11 10 
17 10 

.LLMEYER "On the Choice and Use of Photographic Lenses." 

Eighth Thousand (Enlarged), Is. Descriptive Catalogue free on application.