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March 24 , 2011

Pictorial Composition and the Critical Judgment of Pictures

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This book has been prepared because, although the student has been abundantly supplied with aids to decorative art, there is little within his reach concerning pictorial composition. I have added thereto hints on the critical judgment of pictures with the hope of simplifying to the many the means of knowing pictures, prompted by the recollection of the topsyturviness of this question as it confronted my own mind a score of years ago. I was then apt to strain at a Corot hoping to discover in the employment of some unusual color or method the secret of its worth, and to think of the old masters as a different order of beings from the rest of mankind. Let me trust that, to a degree at least, these pages may prove iconoclastic, shattering the images created of superstitious reverence and allowing, in their stead, the result in art from whatever source to be substituted as something quite as worthy of this same homage. The author acknowledges the courtesies of the publishers of Scribners,The Century and Munsey's magazines, D. Appleton, Manzi, Joyant & Co., and of the artists giving consent to the use of their pictures for this book. Acknowledgment is also made to F. A. Beardsley, H. K. Freeman and L. Lord, for sketches contributed thereto
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