These drawings are examples of the highest degree of skill in fur drawing. They are in pen and ink and are reproduced here the same size as they appeared in the newspaper. The original drawing of the nutria coat was 17 inches, or about three times the height it is here, and was a superb example of pen technique, everywhere a free expressive line. If from an artistic point of view it has lost a

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certain amount in reduction and reproduction, it has gained equally as a representation of fur ; this was intended, allowance being made for the fact that all the lines would be three times as close to one another. Thus the darkest passage down the skirt of the coat which now appears, at least at its centre, to be a solid tone, is actually composed of cross-hatching which did not coagulate till it was reduced. One could not overpraise the drawing of this coat in which is perfectly rendered that peculiar combination of thickness and lightness which characterises nutria and beaver, and in particular the dry glossiness as opposed to the rather wet shine found on broadtail and seal. Note that the edges are both firm and soft and that they obviously turn under at the hem and do not end suddenly like paper.

One may learn this, then, that in drawing furs in pen and ink (much harder than in wash), you must know the relation between the size of the original and the size it is to be reproduced. Assuming that it is always easiest for you to draw your full-length figures the same size, you must adapt your penmanship so that the reduction of your drawing will not bring all your lines together in a blotted effect; while, on the other hand, do not allow for this if your drawing is only to be slightly reduced, since you would only be preparing for something that will never happen.

Of course these and the wash drawings for Harrods are done by a specialist in fur, and, though you may not wish to become one, you will certainly be required to draw fur as long as you continue to draw fashions ; and, for furs, the artists who work for shops are better examples than those who work for magazines.

The wash drawing of fox furs done by a Harrods artist is also a wonderful piece of work (pi. 16). I have not seen the original of the furs, but they must have been exceptionally fine (or the ladies unusually small) to have had heads as large as their wearers. But there are foxes as big as this, and the advantage of the artist over the camera is that he can make all foxes this size. Not having seen the original of the drawing it is not possible to say for certain, but the high-lights on the dark fur could have been taken out with a damp brush or a rubber, while the white hairs might have been put in with a rather dry brush dipped in body colour. One way of putting in the masses of white hair on silver foxes would be to pinch, with finger and thumb, the hairs of your damp brush just where it is fattest. This will cause the tip to splay out into several points which may be dragged on rather damp Process White. You will then be able to do several hairs at a time, but I should practise this a bit first.

A silver fox is the sine qua non of furs and yet, though it is a fur with which everyone is familiar, very few people could tell you, without looking at one, the places where the white hairs come. They occur frequently on the head and are discontinued for 7 or 8 inches when they begin again and grow more frequent till, from the middle of the back to the tail, they are at their thickest. There is usually

a thick little patch of them in what I can only call each rump, which gives a contrast to the dark silky hind legs, while there are usually a number at the base of the tail, and again at the tip. Some people prefer silver foxes to be very black and glossy with comparatively few white hairs and others prefer them with an all-over frosty appearance. Whenever you draw one for a shop, draw the particular one that is set before you, and do not rely on your memory of other and perhaps better foxes. By all means make it more luxuriant and perhaps bigger, but do not alter it. After all, it has not been selected at random.

Contrast the realism of these with the decorative treatments given to furs by Benigni. On pi. 15 you will find silver and white foxes simplified as far as they will go, and yet unmistakable. The coat on the left is of ermine, the broken outline and the very faint pencil lines suggesting this perfectly. The coloured original was only a little larger, but a great deal of beauty has been lost with the colour. The fox on the right-hand coat was beige, the background in beautiful shades of green. Another treatment of fox may be found on pi. 17 in the drawing by Tejada. The original is in ordinary pencil and has a beautiful classic quality, like the drawing on a Greek vase. The peculiar light bulk of fox has been rendered here by an insistence on convex outline ; at no point is it concave. Other examples of fox are on pi. 23 and pi. 41.

On pi. 39 is a good drawing of astrakhan (or Persian lamb). Here the highlight is the original flat tint, the black being added with a light dry touch. Notice how the outline of the fur, though not overdone, is quite different from that of the skirt. Other examples of Persian lamb are on pi. 25 b and pi. 44.

Remember that there are perhaps a dozen ways in which a woman can put on a single fox skin. Make sure you ask the buyer or fashion editress how you are to arrange it. Never forget that a lynx has a tail like a manx cat ; there is something wrong with the lynx that has a tail like a fox. Remember that ermine tails are only black at the tip and that a mole, from the point of view of the furrier, has no tail. All fur grows inevitably from the head in the direction of the tail, and not just the way that seems easiest at the moment. In sketching a fur coat see if there are any buttons at all, and whether or not they are made of fur.

When you are given a fur coat to sketch and are told nothing of the accessories that are, in your finished drawing, to accompany it, do use a little tact and imagination in their selection. Don't draw a musquash coat with a tulle gown or an ermine cloak with brogue shoes and a tweed skirt.

Finally, you must always bear in mind that all furs are of three dimensions, even the thinnest, and must never be treated as if they were paper or silk.

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