TERM USED AS TRANSLATIONS IN QUOTATIONÉTUDE (fra.)
TERM USED IN EARLY TRANSLATIONSÉTUDE (fra.)
but when Van-Dyck came Hither, he brought Face-Painting to Us ; ever since which time (that is, for above fourscore Years) England has excell’d all the World in that great Branch of the Art, […] This may justly be esteem’d as a Complete, and the Best School for Face-Painting Now in the World ; and would probably have been yet Better, had Van Dyck’s Model been follow’d : But some Painters possibly finding themselves incapable of succeeding in His Way, and having found their Account in introducing a False Taste, Others have follow’d their Example, and forsaking the Study of Nature, have prostituted a Noble Art, chusing to exchange the honourable Character of good Painters for that sordid one of profess’d, mercenary Flatterers ;
When a Painter intends to make a History (for example) the way commonly is to design the thing in his Mind, to consider what Figures to bring in, and what they are to Think, Say, or Do ; and then to Sketch upon Paper this Idea of his ; and not only the Invention, but Composition of his intended Picture : This he may alter upon the same Paper, or by making other Sketches, till he is pretty well determin’d as to that ; (and this is that first Sense in which I said the Term Drawing, or Designing was to be understood.) In the next place his Business is to consult the Life, and to make Drawings of particular Figures, or parts of Figures, or of what else he intends to bring into his Work, as he finds necessary ; together also with such Ornaments, or other things of his Invention, as Vases, Frizes, Trophies, &c. till he has brought his Picture to some Perfection on Paper, either in these loose Studies, or in one entire Drawing. This is frequently done, and sometimes these Drawings are finish’d very highly by the Master, either that his Disciples might be able from them to make a greater Progress in the Grand Work, and so leave the less for Himself to do ; or because he made Advantage of such Drawings from the Person who employ’d him, or some other ; and perhaps sometimes for his own Pleasure.
Of these Drawings of all kinds, those great Masters […] made very many ; sometimes several for the same thing, and not only for the same Picture, but for one Figure, or part of a Figure ; and though too many are perish’d, and lost, a considerable Number have escap’d, and been preserved to our Times, some very well, others not, as it has happen’d : And these are exceedingly priz’d by all who understand, and can see their Beauty ; for they are the very Spirit, and Quintessence of the Art ; there we see the Steps the Master took, the Materials with which he made his Finish’d Paintings, which are little other than Copies of these, and frequently (at least in part) by some Other Hand ; but these are undoubtedly altogether his Own and true, and proper Originals.