women's clothes, while there is a further, and amusing, contrast between the faces of the man and his chauffeur, the one effete, the other sturdy.

There is no reason why men and dogs should be such rare meat in fashion drawings, since practice and an early start should soon give proficiency in drawing them. But, in regard to men, women fashion artists should not rest content even when they can draw them quite nicely ; they should really go into the question of men's clothes. There is nothing more excruciating than wrongly drawn details in men's clothes, and I begin to think that women will never master these. Certainly they should always submit their drawings of men to the criticism of men, though this would almost inevitably mean their destruction.

A little care in this respect would enable the fashion artist, and not only the beginner, to avoid some mistakes about subjects which he might feel, though wrongly, to be outside his province. The drawing by Benigni is a reminder of how often one has seen skis and skiers wrongly drawn. It stands to reason that an artist cannot always have been a participant in the scene he depicts, since this would rule out all those paintings by the old masters in which they represent scenes from Bible history ; but when your drawing is going to be seen by many people who have done those very things your imagination alone is trying to reconstruct, it is absolutely necessary to seek expert advice before making a start. It is rather difficult to imagine a polo match or a scene at the tables, a race meeting or the deck of a yacht, unless one has been there ; but, as a fashion artist is sometimes required to reproduce these diversions, he had better consult photographs, a collection of which it is never too early to start, and then get someone who has some knowledge of the locality to check his drawing.

The difficulties mentioned a little way back, of showing particular objects in use with ladies wearing particular costumes, referred to such comparatively easy things as trunks and cars. In one of these drawings Benigni has (pi. 40b), with considerable virtuosity, shown two ladies in actual costumes, ski-joring in front of the Chamonix Palace Hotel, and all this is in a composition so simple and satisfactory that one is apt to overlook how difficult it must have been. This particular drawing may have been done from photographs or from a sketch made on the spot. When constructing a scene of any kind the most important thing is to be consistent about the lighting. Make up your mind at the beginning where the light is to come from and then make all your shadows in accordance with it. Certain shadows can be left out if this is done consistently there are actually none on the skiing ladies themselves but those put in must be regulated in size, direction and density.

The illustration by Mourgue (pi. 43) is reproduced from a coloured original about 14 inches high, the colours being somewhat opaque, probably having been mixed with Process White. It has lost the beauty of a particularly charming colour scheme but has not lost in effectiveness, owing to the rather rough solidity

of the forms, both in the figures and the chair, and to the strong, simple shapes which are always allowed to stand out against one of a different tone.

Pierre Mourgue's work is, unfortunately, insufficiently represented in this book, but examples of it can be found fairly regularly in Femina, and occasionally in Vogue. His men, of which there are no examples here, are extraordinarily well done, because with good looks, good clothes and virility, they combine a delicious sense of humour and the least touch of the very best kind of bad form, the kind of which Erickson's are completely innocent. To any one to whom the thought of Paris brings nostalgia, Mourgue's drawings are sheer joy. He can conjure up a whole world of stuffy elegance with just a moulding, a pedestal and a chair. He does for the Latin races what Erickson does for the Anglo-Saxon, for Paris what Beaton does for London ; and the men and women he draws would seem strangely exotic in Bond Street or Princes Street or any northern capital ; that, perhaps, being the quality that makes them seem so attractive. It remains for Mourgue, then, to prove that chic is not after all international, for other artists other French artists draw the same clothes from the same houses, and the effect, though equally smart, is not the same.

Any reader, not necessarily a critical one, will perceive what difficulty I am having to state just what it is about Mourgue that is so admirable ; and my only fear is that this quality of his may be only an intrinsic charm animating an ability that is, possibly, slightly less than Erickson's. Even if the student can get no more from Mourgue than this, he can find in his work all that is admirable in what is French. And, just as even a time of crisis has been unable to make skiing possible in Scotland, or Devonshire safe for royalty, so has it failed to make London a centre of inspiration for the creation of fashions. France, the French, and Paris in particular, have this supremacy which Mourgue alone interprets with complete authenticity in drawings which do not attempt to depict a world of culture, of gentility or of sport, but the life of fashion as it is lived in France and certain European resorts.

I hope I have not been unsuccessful in pointing out the qualities that are

to be admired in Mourgue's work, both from the point of view of the student

and from that of an ordinary reader. From my own point of view, his work has

more charm and delight than that of any other fashion artist, and for that reason

I feel rather shy about recommending him to-students who would probably do

Fashion Drawing Sections

Part-1 Part-2 Part-3 Part-4 Part-5 Part-6 Part-7 Part-8