A Treatise on Calico Printing, Of Pattern-Drawing

A Treatise on Calico Printing, VOL. I-II
Printed for C. O'Brien, Bookseller, Islington, and fold by Bew, Paternoster-row: Richardson, Royal Exchange: Murray, Fleet-Street: And the Booksellers of Manchester, Glasgow, Dublin, &c.
For reasons which will afterwards appear this Work is not paged;—and every Secion or Branch of the Business treated of, is begun on this Side.

As designing or drawing Pattern is the obvious source of the business on which this tract is written, it may be expected that something will be laid on it by way of instruction or advice; but, as Pattern-Drawing depends so much on what every one understands by genius, and is so much governed by fancy, little can be said on it to any advantage j however, as bearing some assinity with it, it will be considered in what the ex cellency of a Pattern-Drawer consists, arid what some of the helps are, which genius may possibly receive from that experience which forms the basis of prosessional judgment.

By a good Pattern-Drawer should be under stood one, who poflesles a sertility of invention, with judgment to adapt that sertility to the best purpose, as it regards taste, effect, execution and expence; or at least, one who can improve on what is doing by others, or can readily catch the reigning style, and by adopting it, form his designs accordingly.

He should likewise have a knowledge of the business in every stage of its process, and conse quently be enabled to answer, in some degree, how every intended effect may be obtained pre vious to the executive part being put into operation.

Hence the Writer ventures to say, that how ever excellently a Drawer can copy nature, or combine a number of colours, yet, if that be all, his utility is very limited, when compared with him, who without great neatness of drawing or brilliancy of colouring, can produce that variety which gives a spring to a business, ever dependant on the capriciousness of taste, and the fickleness of fancy.

It may nevertheless be observed (making a transition from Pattern-Drawing to the Patterns themselves) that it is difficult to say, what really constitutes a good pattern, as decisions on that subject are formed by different persons from very different motives; for instance, a Drapers determination of one is biassed by what will best suit his line of trade; a Printer's, that which is adapted to produce the desired effect at the least expence; while a buyer's opinion is guided by what is most generally exhibited in the shops; and many patterns acquire the character of being good ones, merely from a Draper having it in his power to command a general display of them under every advantage; for the most fanciful and best executed pattern would have little chance of selling well, if seen but in a few places, or the sale not otherwise forwarded; as it then would not have the appearance of a generally approved one, and consequently it would be disregarded in a proportionate degree. But, as this will be occasionally considered in other places, a few sentiments-respecting Genius, Fancy, and Invention, as more immediately the subject of this section, will be now offered; as well as what those helps are,of which genius may avail itself, toward directing its progress; with the needsulness and means of restraining its impetuosity, or preventing itsccentricity: some other thoughts will likewise be advanced, rather more remote to the immediate subject, but still having so much affinity with it, as to come under the cognizance of a Designer, or those who have, or desire to have, any concern in that department. But, it may be necessary to observe, that as the subject gives rise to several observations, not sufficiently close to be interwoven with it, theresore, for the sake of being as methodical as possible, and the keeping together what is more immediately to the point, they will be reserved for the Essay surther on.

Previous likewise to what will be said in this, and the following section, relative to putting-on the block, the writer intimates, that, to avoid consusion of terms, when speaking of Pattern- Drawers, he shall most frequently call them designers; patterns he shall call designs; Putters-on the Block he shall call Drawers; and their performances putting-on; but, in displaying the irules, such distinction will not be affected, as he shall use them indifferently as best suits the im mediate purpose. As for the terms Genius, Invention, and Fancy, though distinct ones, Fancy will be most, likely adopted to serve for either, as being most applicable to designing for Callico-printing.

In the beginning of this section, it being said a deal depends on Genius in regard to the subject now in view, it may be expected, that,preparatory to what will be exhibited as mechanical helps tolt, something will be said wherein it consists, how it is to be improved, what are its indications, and the like; it will therefore be attempted, not as aspiring to any thing doctrinal, specifically descriptive, or as seeking controversy, but only as it seems to hold a connection with the subject treated of; for, till terms are explained, understood, and universally received in one unequivocal sense, we animadvert in the dark, hence to ask what Genius is, how it originates, how it performs, or where is it seated? leads into such metaphysical obscurity or perplexity, that the most intelligent are at a loss how to satisfy such inquiries; for knowing little of the elementary principles of things, as the sources are so remote, how can positive or clear consequences be educed? therefore we sit down at last with simply calling it a faculty of the mind, and to express its operations, say something like what is ventured to be offered surther on, taking certain positions as principles or maxims, and accordingly draw our deductions and argue from them.

As for the display or productions of genius or fancy, enough is visible in every station, and therefore though only treating of pattern-drawing, an occupation of little worth or merit in the eyes of those who hold a high rank in the scale of artists, as if requiring little strength of intellect, compass of invention, or accuracy in execution; yet, in its proper sphere, taken in all circumstances, it is with those whom it immediately concerns, of as much importance, and as difficult to attain, as many arts or sciences that are universally dignified.

Genius in any shape, it is observed, is not satisfied unless exploring unbeaten tracks, or rendering that perfect which cannot be rendered so by the efforts of mediocrity; to constitute which and to empower it so to act, there must be fancy, judg ment and taste: by fancy, various ideas seem to be carried to the mental repository and there, stored up to he occasionally made use of; but then fancy should be restrained or governed by judgment, or its emanations will be eccentric or extravagant; and this faculty of judgment seems to be properly employed in going through its collection of ideas, to separate or arrange them as maybe required; er in other words, judgment is a kind of counterbalance to the eccentricity of fency, curbing it (as before intimated) when im petuous, and guiding it when prone to deviate.

Further, As judgment is chiefly understood to keep the fancy within proper bounds, so that no thing be unnatural or distortive; another power is requisite to render whatever is produced, not merely free from fault, but to give it a beauty, and an elegant and highly polished finish; which power is generally expressed by the term taste; of which much has been written to define, and to bring under certain rules, but with little effect, being a faculty more acquired by accident than by nature, and partly depending upon circumstances not always regulated by strict propriety; but as it takes in the consideration or knowledge of what is generally, and (in some cases) universally, allowed to give a finish to the works of art; it is therefore able to form a decision, either as applicable to the performance under the designers hands, or in determining on the works of others. Taste, however, according as it is employed, is either superior, or subordinate to judgment; as the arbitrator of ornament, it is despotic; but in following nature, it must be subjective; hence, according as the fancy or judgment is likely to be employed, let the designer attend to this distinction, as, in the instance of pattern-drawing, taste is to he understood as the uppermost quality to be acquired, nature being no way in that business likely to be very closely imitated; but in other situations where the performance consists in its resemblance of nature, and that, resemblance is required, there, judgment (with taste however at its call) must claim the precedency or first notice.

Again, either of these three qualities is of little service without the assistance of the others, fancy alone being very inadequate to produce what is requisite (even when required to be wild or grotesque) for though its productions may please, it can be but for a moment; but, when regulated by judgment and adorned by taste, it strikes almost universally; the decorative part pleasing those who know but little, or overlook that of the natural; and those who look for propriety, find it, with the addition of that heightening or vivification which true taste imparts; for when these are united, they of course strengthen and add to each others power and effect, exhibiting something novel, expressed with propriety, and embellished with elegance; genius, which is the vivifying spark, giving a spring and spirit to the whole; and without which, the most elaborate works of judgment will never give much pleasure to any one of a refined and comprehensive turn, though for a while they may please a frigid observer.

It is not the business of this little effusion to particularize the indications of genius further than as immediately applicable to the mechanical operations displayed further on; the writer how ever will just mention that many have been de ceived by an early indication of such a gift, forming great expectations that when ripened, it would acquire much celebrity; but, it is not easy in juvenile objects to say into what road it may hereaster strike, for until their productions may be supposed to be regulated by that degree of discernment, which requires some maturity of years, there can be little of what is termed judgment: hence many youths have been put to designing though it has afterwards appeared their talents have been much over-rated,; and in deciding on such indications, a caution mould be observed, for though genius may seem to improve as maturity approaches; yet ere that epocha conimences, it may have pasted its meridian; which is seen,  frequently to be the  case, whenever a remarkable early display of genius has been visible: besides, people who thus hastily decide, are not aware, that while they do not expect a perfect perform ance, and look but for an attempt, they only commend its proximity to perfection; but when the time comes that something masterly should be produced, the performer may shew that his genius was not of the kind to arrive at that height; and then, those who predicted great effects, are proportionably disappointed and mortified.

* This may be alluded to as particularly applicable to lads being put out to Pattern-drawers who work at home (and it holds good respecting Cutters and Engravers) though this is an error in those who put them out; for when out of their times they have in effect another term to serve before they know any thing beyond the use of the pencil, the knife, or graver, otherwise than by mere precept; and, of course, can be but of proportionate service at a manufactory.It is impossible to specify all the impediments to a lad's improvement, or the helps he may receive, a deal depends on either; for instance, a youth with strong indications of genius may be placed where there is no one proper to cultivate it, the situation or course of work may not be congenial to his natural aptitude, or he may be precluded those circumstances which are necefc sary to give him considence, and improve his understanding in general matters; these are points (lamentably for the youth) too often totally disregarded,—and from these and other reasons, it may be advanced, that there are so very few good pattern drawers, (according to the de finition just given) though such numbers have served as apprentices, or been pupils to pattern drawing, and this leads to say, thinking how forward many are, to take pupils or apprentices to drawing (leaving the weighty consideration of premiums out of the question) that those who have youths to put out, and those who are inclined to take them, should not be very prompt either way, from the considerations mentioned above, as well as what follows; for it is of little signification to say, that such a lad shews a great genius or taste for drawing, or any business de pending on fancy, unless there is some indication of an understanding equally acute and comprehensive in general matters, with other concomitants of vivacity, good disposition, and a plastic temper; as then, and then only, there seems hopes of his genius, whatever bent it may take, furnishing itself in its approaches to maturity, as circumstances offer, with every requisite towards improving it, and that without the formal imposition of precept, rule, and frigid advice; consequently when arrived at that age, in which something beyond a mere effort is expected, his own hopes and views, as well as those of others, will not be disappointed.

It is begged that what is above advanced be not understood as giving into the common mode of inveighing against taking apprentices, from the probability of lessening the value or scarcity of designers, who have pasted their noviciate (as may likewise be said of other branches) what has been said, is more directed to parents, who are prejudiced in favor of their children's talents, or through fondness mistake their inclination for genius, for unless a lad is likely to shew those faculties which will get him through lise with credit and ease as an artist (in which class designers may be included) he had better be put to any common mechanical employment, as certainly nothing can be a greater misery to a man, than to think his living depends upon the productions of fancy, and he is unfortunate enough not to possess a single ray of it, and that, consequently, his utmost exertions are despicable, and of course not worth exhibiting.

The writer will now endeavour, perhaps not over methodically, to throw in such documents as seem to him most likely to assist the fancy in its exertions, and with such remarks as occasionally arise, either as more or less applicable to the designer or his employer; and before he speaks of the mechanical parts of designing, he will dwell a little on some circumstances not totally irrevalent to such employment, and probably not absolutely unworthy the notice of either party; for, though the aim may be milled, the intention is to render the performance more easy to one party, and consequently more advantageous to the other.

* Those are particularly alluded to here, who are engaged as Designers to work a stated number of hours in a day. But to treat Designers with proper address is what few Principals are competent to. — See something to this effect in the Note at the end of PinningIn the first place, it is suggested, a Designer ought not, by any means, to be considered in so mechanical a light, as if fancy or invention were of such a nature, that he can at all times command a successful operation*; similar to a person performing a merely mechanical piece of work, in which little more than utensils are needsul, and the subject to be acted on is imme diately and conveniently at hand. To illustrate which, it may be observed, that Principals them selves, at times, afsect to say, Designers should only work when so disposed, yet many of them,- inconsistently with such a position, think nothing done unless they see something on paper; making hardly any account of wliat the invention is at work upon; but, contrary to this practice, it is here said, that the designer mould not be asked, except on singular occasions, how he means to ido such a part? what will be put in this or that place? what will be the colour of this object? and soon? but that a proper mode is, (when not left entirely to work from his own fancy) for him to be told what sort of patterns is wanted; on which, he accordingly draws a number slightly, or perhaps nearly perfects agreeable to the nature of them; from these a selection is made as having the best effect; afterwards another is made, including that quality, with their adaptation for working; and even from these it may be needsul to make a selection as proper to shew, or to be put into execution.

All this is however offered as matter of opinion, or only to be put in practice where and when it can be done conveniently, as at all times and in all places it cannot, neither is it always necessary; but this is however insisted on, that a Designer can do little with pleasure to himself at a Printing-ground, if under restraint, or subject to that kind of controul, or enquiry, which has been expresied above; or if his employer be of that cast, who consider all under them as but mere machines to procure themselves profit, and that as such, they have nothing to do but to spur every one on by any method, however coarse and unfeeling.

Respecting this operation, and indeed any other, it may likewise be noted, that one person only is proper to give orders (no matter how many have been previously advised with) for rarely do two or more agree in opinion; and for a designer or any other to receive orders from several, and those orders different, or countermanding, no one need be informed, is productive of much embarraffinent, and often subversive of what each party desires.

But turning now to the immediate subject of this section; and in particular alluding to fancy, it is suggested that every one is prejudiced in savor of his own ideas, or what he concludes or wishes to be understood as such, Principals are particularly prone to be much in love with such apparently new ideas, and not being always un der the necessity of consulting any one, they often adopt and put in execution, too precipitately, what has struck them as valuable; not discovering how they have deceived themselves, till they find no other person seems struck by its appearance when displayed, as they were by it in idea; for if they first speak of such an idea to their subordinates as very striking, they not being always at liberty to pass sentence, or even give their opinions with that freedom which the principal can and will on what they might offer, the insatuation does not go off so soon, nor is it seen as such till too late.

* The above suggestions lead the Writer to observe that some will say if they could but use the pencil, they are sure they could produce something wonderful new, and striking in effect ! — to combat unthoughtful prepossessions of such a kind the writer knows would be to little purpose; he will only say of this, that he who advances such a notion, can know nothing of the operation of the inventive facility in such a case, and of course does not distin guish between a certain end or point represented to him by the liveliness of imagination, divested of all obstructions to its appearing so forcible in novelty and effect, and the operation neceflary to produce or display it on paper by a mechanical or manual process, with the usual interruptions of objections, impediments, revisions, dissatisfactions, &c.

** Speaking of this infatuation in favour of selfcreated ideas, the following little anecdote is offered, and which (hews at the same time how with a little finesse, a weak side may be played with: A person having to shew a number of patterns, as townsman (when it was the custom to take a quantity of patterns only at stated times, and after shewing them, to make them general) having displayed them before a Draper, He, after praising some, and rejecting others, said of one, that if altered in such a manner it would be much better; the person who shewed the patterns, willing to tempo rize, told him his observation was judicious, and added, to heighten the flattery, that several others had made exactly the same observation; this so pleased the Draper, that he set about altering every one of the patterns in the same judicious stile, and took such pleasure in his employment, and retained the other so long, that he had little time to go else where that day, resolving to take care for the future, how he commended the alterations suggested by the same person again.

*** This may be illustrated by a capital connection in town, fruitlessly attempting for two or three seasons to force stripes into vogue; but though the work was generally good, the effort subsided under the prevalency of a different style.

**** This was at West-Ham, Essex.

***** What is a man's genius or fancy worth, when distressed, brow beaten, or otherwise illiberally treated? and how little do many think of what are often the real causes of the great difference which at times appear in the works of men of genius?

******These may seem to many but trivial observations, the writer however, from experience, knows the contrary; and he is certain some others in the most eligible situation as engaged Designers, know the same; indeed an engaged Designer at a Printing-Ground is now little more than a Compiler.
Drapers likewise frequently getting hold of an idea, adopt it as a good one, and endeavour to communicate it (perhaps with a friendly intention) but are often greatly disappointed when, what is drawn in consequence of such communication does not give the effect they want*. A great deal of time, trouble, and other inconvenience would however certainly be prevented, by letting those wonderfully striking ideas rest a little till thought of more coolly; and then, if no dimunition happens in their apparent value,  or ideal effect, there is the greater probability of their succeeding and striking more universally.**

It often happens too, that many (Drapers particularly) are violent in requiring something  new, or totally different from what has ever been seen; all this has a busy sound, and in idea promises great deal, or at least implies the hope of a great deal; but could it be procured, the expectation might not be answered, as it generally seems that when any thing happens to be produced, very different from the common run or appearance of work, or what may be called the reigning style; it has not the chance of getting into vogue, for reasons already given, except when a Draper of eminence, who holds his connections as it were by a bridle, is determined to push what is a favourite of his; though even that will not always succeed; for somehow or other capital blunders are now and then made by the most experienced, in the chusing of patterns. Cautious Drapers however are not very forward in this respect; they know, indeed all must, that though at all times there are certain classes of patterns that ensure sale, yet a continuation of one stile, will tire in time; and the utmost efforts to continue it, will not always be propitious;*** for innovations in style, rarely happen abruptly; they are brought about by flow degrees, or in fact more by accident than design, and oftentimes in a manner contrary to what any one might conceive. Much, to be sure, is sometimes said of the fickleness and whimsicalness of Drapers and others, but there surely is little cause, it being natural to be tired of any thing ever so excellent when very familiar, and of course novel or different appearances are sought after; but when interested views are annexed, and those variations cannot be sufficiently obtained, it is just as natural to repine.

There was a time when no one thought grounding off the table could be performed as it now is; the writer well remembers when it was in agitation, to print two reds and two olaves at the house where first executed****. All the Printers exclaimed that the two after-colours could never be put in according to the designs;it was however attempted, and it succeeded, an J nothing but that course of work wa« done there that season. The next season, indeed ihortly after, it was attempted at other places; and now little difficulty (comparatively speaking) is ex perienced in it.

It may likewise be said of black, dove, and yellow patterns; at first the grand objection to executing them was that a black could not be procured; hence when dove was introduced, it was done off the table, by those, who wedded to the old system, execrated an innovation, which then, for the honour of a good black, appeared discreditable; but others, who were less tenacious of such honour, as well as for other sufficient reasons, soon brought that course of work into vogue; and now, or at least very lately, what course was more general? it may be said too, in speaking of black, that formerly it was a maxim no pattern with a mixture of colours would do without it; but it is not thought so now.

What the writer has now to advance, as rules or documents respecting designing, would follow here properly enough, but having little to advance, and that little not satisfactory even to himself, he will defer it to the end of the section; observing however, as leading to what he means to say about Genius, Fancy, Invention, and drawing, that more might very probably be said or advanced as Rules, but Genius or Fancy cannot be dictated to; Fancy must, in many cases, be left almost intirely to itself, as not coming under a mechanical description, or analysis: much to be sure may be said, and pretty disquisitions have been given, (perhaps these in this article are of the number) about judgment presiding with coolness, while fancy is wandering here and there; then taste is ushered in to the assistance of judgment, and so on; but he is induced to think, that in genius is comprized that faculty which soon avails itself, whenever opportunities happen, of what is necessary to render its emanations effective; in fact, Rules' imposed on a natural genius, too often shackle it, and it is almost proverbial, that true genius soars above all precept, and looks with a becoming disdain at the formality of rule; often producing what never would have appeared, is rules authoritatively given, had been closely adhered to; and it may be said, when Fancy suffers itself to be pinned down to Rule, it is to be suspected there is not a great deal of genius, and that those who can produce little without certain rules to lead them, are not much better than copyists or imitators; but turning to the point in view, which is the province of fancy, namely, designing, it is only at certain times that it is alive,***** and then it despises setters; when it is not free, like every thing else in distress, it catches at any assistance, and is thankful for any help that offers itself.

Fancy notwithstanding, should be (as before said) at all events, free from certain impediments or restraints; which applying to a Designer's performance at a Printing-ground, can hardly be done; from the mind being confused with various considerations, that obstruct or divert its efforts, such as receiving orders from several, murmurings at not always succeeding, being forced to do duty at all times, and the like******; but chiefly too much (it is again hinted) from many Principals incessantly desiring to be occularly convinced he has not been idle; for it is here asserted, that the first Designer in the Printing business (however the assertion may wound his pride) would be ashamed to have it seen, how dissatisfied he is sometimes with what he most endeavours to render perfect, the re petitions which he makes, the doubts he is in about rejecting this or that idea, the difficulty of fixing his attention, etc. and it is thence as considently said, that those patterns which for several seasons have been allowed the first place, would probably never have been produced, if the Designer had been shackled by the direction of others, or been in that controuled or subordinate state, where his own inclination must have given way to the frigid direction of those, who, more alive to gain than reputation, find no impulse to ascend beyond a certain height, or stretch out beyond a certain distance from the beaten path.

As for invention, strictly speaking, it is not here offered to say what it is, much less how to describe it; there is a mutation of stile or taste, to be sure, but nothing new; for novelty is only a name for an old effect or appearance revived with a little alteration and (making a metaphysical excursion) if the question were asked, what is original? an answer could not be easily obtained sussicient to satisfy some enquirers; the term having no precise meaning, till it is agreed on all sides, how ideas are acquired, whether intuitively or by sensation, or, in other words, whether product ions termed original, are or are not but mere copies of certain archetypes, conveyed to the mind by its attendant faculties: and if the proudest designer in the printing or any other business, would be candid, he would confess there is not near so much of invention in what he produces, as he desires the world to give him credit for; since if traced to the source it will generally appear that the mind received a hint, if not something more expressive, from some visible, object or other; and it may further be said, that the greatest genius would be ashamed to be discovered at the little shifts he often makes to attain a certain end, by searching into nooks and corners, as it were, for objects to strike out something from or at the quantity or collection of subjects he secretly heaps up to supply himself with thoughts and hints, and the methods he takes to disfigure the ideas he thus more or less surreptitiously purloins, to make them appear novel; and too glaring  it is, how a reputed genius will contend about his claim to what is palpably plagiarism; and which among Designers in the Callico-printing business, is certainly as frequent as among other classes: Besides, if it be considered what a number of Designers are always at work, and how many thousand patterns are produced in a year, but how few of them remarkable for novelty, it must seem still more clearly there is very little of striking out of the beaten path, and much less of originality than might be expected.

In some cases it is more difficult to imitate than invent; for the quality generally demanded in an imitation, is to excel the original; but unhappily that word excel, in this case, is very vague; it may very likely be altered for the better, if alluding to its being rendered easier to work; but almost every different person will have a disserent idea about its appearing better, or having a better effect, at least as far as they chuse to speak, or are at liberty so to do. 
*It is a common mode of speaking when applied to any art or science, to say, what a genius he must have had, who invented it; or what an excellent invention it was: such an exclamation is truly - ridiculous, and void of thought: as in the instance: of Callico-printing, it is very likely the first efforts concerning it, were hardly worth notice, but succestive improvements have formed it into some system.

** This should be understood as likewise addressed to Principals, who affect to oppose a prevalency of  style.

*** It has the appearance as if a certain house saw no beauty in any leaf but of this kind, fig. 119, as almost all other kinds of leaves feem to be avoided, and respecting which, see Rules 17 and 35, for putting on.

**** Perhaps the idea may seem strained and wide from Pattern-drawing, but such is the connection between things apparently remote, that a good piece of History Painting, as comprehending design, colouring, effect, &c. may be considered as a model to form a chintz pattern from, by supposing each, figure a flower, and the background, the attributes, and other appendages, as leaves, or ornamental parts.

***** A mistake is here just mentioned, prevalent chiefly among subordinates, which is, that a master’s business depends on having a good Drawer; this in some cases is far from truth; for the goodness of his Drawer is of little service, if his connections are not respectable; good drawings will undoubtedly help to procure work, but they will not force it, if there be no good understanding in another shapet and which every Printer who works for Drapers well knows.

****** This is instanced in a late imitation of a dark ground pattern, with a kind of moss or spray hanging down in great quantities, as from the judicious circumstance of throwing in more body colour in the commanding flowers, than the original had, the copy hạd on the whole a better effect.

******* Of all technical phrases among Callico Printers, it is worth remarking, that those processes which are the most simple, should be denominated chemical, to distinguish them from those that have a stronger claim, in every respect, to that appellation. - Perhaps the writer is wrong from not knowing how it originated; but every profession has its vitiated or perverted terms; and if rendered proper, they would not long remain so.
As applicable to the preceding sentiments, it is observed that some will say, when a Designer means to produce something remarkably excellent, he first fixes on a plan in his own mind, and nearly forms it there before he transfers it to paper; all this the man of fancy smiles at, knowing its fallacy; for whatever may be said of the mind forming a plan of something, the judgment regulating it, and thus mentally working on it till compleat, it is frange that any person is infatuated enough to believe such a thing, or ridiculous enough to assert it can be done; the works of the greatest genius’s that have been produced, no matter of what species, have been perfected but gradually, and as it were by piece-meal, but to advance the: position just mentioned, is just as if a person said, I have an original in my mind, and I will set down and copy it on paper; - he may to be sure set about it, but the original in his mind will be very far from being faithfully copied; for he may begin as the ideas present themselves, but by being obliged to disjoint that mental original, he very soon in his progress loses the first appearance, and before the completion of his copy, through repeated alterations, rejections, &c. it may very probably be quite of a different shape and complexion; and that this is the case in *Pattern-drawing, the writer ventures to say  few of his brethren will deny.*

The writer begs not to be understood by any thing which he has suggested, as meaning to depreciate merit or genius, (he himself as a Designer is more put to his shifts than he at all times chuses to own) his aim partly by speaking thus freely, is to induce those who are reputed possessors of it, to be cautious how far they give, themselves praise or credit for what they do possess, as rarely half what a person advances of himself, is believed; and in this case, Designers as well as others, whose existence depends on public caprice, would be less arrogant or puffed up in the zenith of their reputation, if they frequently reflected on the versitality of taste or fashion,  not knowing how soon such caprice or mutability may affect them; as it is not every one that can readily come into every turn of that fickle despot: that this has been the case, is well known in instances of several who have been deemed capital Drawers, but are now almost - totally difregarded; hence, if the writer may venture to advise in this point, let every Designer who wishes to secure his creditas long as possible, not foolishly affect to stand alone or obstinately to oppose or contemn that stile which is prevalent**; but gradually slide into the changes as they happen, or blend them with his own peculiar manner; otherwise, certain is must be, that from the fickleness of opinion or fancy, and the confequential change of fashion, together with the probability of a rifing generation of Designers eclipfing him, he, at a certain period, will regret that self-sufficiency which blinded him to natural defects, or that restlessness which stifled what prudence ought to have fuggested.

It is time now to turn from these excursions, and proceed to give some hints (Rules they cannot be called, nor are they inserted as such) respecting the operative parts of designing, more to evince a readiness to do those some service who perhaps expect it, and are not to be persuaded but that it may be obtained in such a - manner, than from any confidence in their value, or satisfaction in their display; as, in respect to utility or practice, they can only be general documents, from the changeableness of stile or taste; besides, every person who is in a situation to decide, and can have his decision put in practice, has his fixed ideas of taste, propriety, good drawing, &c. some through prejudice, some through affectation, and others through opposition. As for example, some explode a certain shape of a leaf, a leaf, a flower, or other object,*** either as being too plain, stiff, common, and the like; or else as expensive in cutting, difficult to pencil, and so on; while others have their reasons for adopting the very contrary; the same may be said of trails, some rejecting a curled one, others an upright one; in short, it would be endless to particularize those different opinions, or what by different persons are adhered to as standards of elegance, propriety or grace; all see through different mediums, and of course are differently affected.****

N. B. Respecting the following hints, it may be noticed, that several of the Rules for putting - on should be kept in fight by the Designer,- especially about the width of the cloth, - an even face, - easiness of pencilling, - oeconomy in cutting, &c. Rule 6 for putting-on is almost a counterpart of the following.

HINTS, &c. for Defigning or Pattern drawing. 15

In drawing trail patterns, if you mean to have flowers or other objects stand so as to appear distinct from the other parts, first mark their distances, observing to make the trail spread regularly; then mark what objects are to be of - different colours, keeping two or more objects tbat are similar in shape and colour, as far from each other as you can, and let every colour speak as it were, but particularly those that are the leading or characterizing ones; or, in other words, let nothing be lost or kept back, but what is of the leaft consequence.

In groups the greater the contrast, the better the effect, as a light object among dark ones generally fucceeds; reds and greens being the most harmonizing colours, or the most agreeable when put together, should therefore be properly attended, so that they may command an appearance: where there are two or three reds it is certainly best to let the body colours, that is, the - palest colours, stand clear, or without being co vered too much by the deep ones;****** but on the contrary, when elaborateness and delicacy is affected, these observations cannot avail.

In dark or shady patterns (according to the present humour) there seems to be a requisition for a plain white object to stand forward; and if kept in an harmonious proportion to the whole, it certainly has an enlivening effect; but to judge of it according to the principle of harmonious colouring, or distribution of shade, the effect is too abrupt to produce harmony, though as above said, it may be lively.

Small copperplate dark grounds feem particularly to require white object, or a distinct white part of one, and it would not be amiss in copper plate small patterns, to manage them so, that when the light parts are gone, something expressive may be left behind.

This enlivening effect is generally destroyed in dark patterns, where the colour ends in shades within an object, or without being bounded by a line of some fort, as it gives the white about it a tinge, and in woalded work, the less the yellow touches or goes over the black it is the better, as it generally hurts and renders it of an olave hue; this however depends upon the colour, but but particularly so when executed without grassing or fielding, as in the case of patterns brought up in sumach and bran bleached, the cloth not  being then of a good white.

In drawing some classes of patterns, it is as well to make them as general as possible, though that, it is granted, is rather an after-consideration; and in patterns that are to have chemical or loose colours thrown in*******, which soon fly off, there should be fast colours, (unless the whole is in chemic) under them, or so connected, that there may seem as little deficiency as possible, when such loose colours disappear.

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