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The San Francisco call. (San Francisco [Calif.]) 1895-1913, January 18, 1903, Image 11

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Persistent link: http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn85066387/1903-01-18/ed-1/seq-11/

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THE SUNDAY CALL.
OF all the branches of art that wo
man takes to— and that means all
branches that man takes to— there
sis not one that seems so especial
ly fitted to her as miniature paint-
Ing.
A miniature is a feminine thing in itself.
It Is delicate, fragile, fascinating, danty.
sentimental. It carries the aroma of old
chests and lavender and ribbon-bound love
letters. It Is all pinks and blues and
whites, like a handful of sweet peas.
There is every reason in the world why it
should be the work of a woman.
Watch some of the charming San Fran
ciscans who have taken it up and you
wUl wonder which Is the prettier picture—
the one that is being painted or tnesubtle
nngered artist bending above her work.
We have a number of women who are
already distinguishing themselves in the
waik.
Miss Lily O'Uycn is one of them. Not
that she Is a San Franciscan except by
adoption, but our cotorie of artists is gliil
to claim her even in that way.
Miss O'fiyan's best known miniature
was the on»3 of Janice Meredith that
adorned the cover of the book. Every one
remembers the delicacy and spirit of thnt
—and who has forgotten the famous rurl?
The painter was a friend of Paul Leicester
Ford and she painted him as well as the
whimsical and charming creature of his
imagination.
Sir Wilfrid Laurier was another of her
distinguished subjects. Since she has come
to work among us she has done work
among people that we know. Mrs. LUIen
thal and Mrs. Mariln Schultz are interest
ing studies. A quaint portrait of gracious
Mrs. O'Callaghan Is by her. as well as one
of Miss Annie. The character depleted in
the elder woman's hands is u striking Tilt.
Mrs. Marie Gge's portrait is a spirkuelle
thing. A part of the work has been done
on that of Miss Amie IJriggs, the artist,
and It Is so elusive a sketch Ihtt Miss
O'Ryan has named it "The Spirit of the
Woods." Equally dainty Is th-? portrait of
the little child cf Mr. K}ng of Oil City, P.*.
Miss Rose Hooper went abroad to study
miniature painting and has returned to us
and set up a studio here in town. She has
ejxnt much time in Burlingame painting
the smart set. A portrait of Mrs. Jne.To
bin, reproduced lu-re. is characteristic
Mrs. Coiman and her two children. Mrs.
Talbot anil Miss? Huntingdon, are some of
her subjects. She U now^»working - on «if
likeness of Mrs. Fred Perry, her uwn'ais*
ter. Some of her d.stir.gulshed liasiern
subjects are Mrs. Rogers of Philadelphia,
Mrs. Torrey of New York and Mrs. Parke
of Chicago.
Miss Lillian Adams is an Englishwoman,
who has taught her art to us. Her mother
was a miniature painter before her and
painted every Duke and Earl in all Eng
land. She also made a miniature of Queen
Alexandra, which was much liked by the
King. Miss Adams has In the collection
of her.own work a portrait of her mother,
one' of herself as a child, done from an old
photograph: one of herself at present, a
part profile painted from a mirror; a copy
of one made from life of the beautiful
Miss Abraham of New York. There is one
of Mabel Lov«, the little actress. She
painted in England Lady Sandhuist, Vis
countess Cranbrook and Lady Macfarlane.
Mrs. Minnie llaslehurst has painted
miniatures of several men, which is less
usual tnan the painting of women. One of
Alvlnza Hayward is enrolled with her suc
cessful work. Mr. Edwin Joy and her
husband. Dr. llaslehurst. are others. Tha
portrait of Mrs. Sharon is from her brush.
Miss Mae Slessinger is just beginning
her career In this field of art. A painting
of lier mother is her best work.
In. Oakland Miss Laura Prather an<l
Miss "Rose Campbell swell the list.' So
you see we can make a pretty showing of
.women miniature painters.
REVIVAL OF MINIATURE PAINTING-
-BY Ri'Sd' i-JLOPER.
f-t^IIERE is now no doubt that the
I revival cf miniature painting was
1 not a mere fad of short duration—
I it has proven by its steady ¦ rise
during the last ten years "that
It has come to stay and in a few years'
time it will again take its place, ad i:i
ctnturies gone by, among the highest of
all arts.
To my mind the wane of the miniature,
caused by the brilliancy and novelty of
photography, is one of the most deplor
ahle things in the history of art, for it de
prived the world, at least one side of it,
of one of the most pleasing and dainty
of art creations. In the old countries the
love of novelty dec* not prevail so stronij
ly as in our own, therefore, although pho
tography had its strong hold there, too,
one always found the miniature in evi
dence.
An lncreaseln? Interest in this line of
portraiture has been strongly noticeable
of late years and a larger and more In
telligent appreciation is given to its prog
ress.
Miniature portrait' painting, although
described as being in "the little," should
not in any wise be considered as a lesser
art. There is no reason why, If the art
ist's conception and feeling for the work
Is correct, a miniature portrait (should not
be as life-like, both in color and form, as
any large canvas; of course the treatment
and style must be different, as, for in
stance, a miniature should be an idealized
Image of the original. Greatest care
should b« taken to preserve th© strong
characteristics of the subject, at the same
time the artist should have the power to
look far down into a human character
and delineate the best that can be re
vealed; In these two things lies the sole
support of the painter, and having them
both planted firmly In each piece of work
he or »h« commences, all the daintiness
and prettlness which he or she chooses
to brtnr Into the picture— provided every-
thing remains stridly subordinate to the
Rn at aim— in no wtee takes nw#y from
the likeness. On tho contrary it lenJs
c!:f>rm to the whole and makes it what
a miniature always should bv.— a pleasing
picture. . .
Extry rhiriature phould be to the
jainter strictly individual: lie shoul.l
i.ever have palnUd anything like it be
fore. The- greatest trouble with many
artists is that nil their works look aiikt-:
there is no Individuality. The painter of
u miniature portrait should be equally as
ii. spired as the painter of canvases. lor.
o:iliou5h in the "small," a miniature is
f.'ipabie pi expressing an much thought
anil soul ad any .larger work.
Vjfwiru; the miniatures of the day v/ith
the glamor of the ancients still upoi: uj
is a hard task. Of course It is impossible
to estimate aright those who pass cur
rrnt now as abie masters cf this art; It
would be unfair. In brief, to attempt to in
stitute any companions. We must re
member in forming' our judgments that It
1j* lit- nrly always a portrait that is at
temptfd and, although the first requisite
in a portrait is exactitude in respect to
likeness, every crtist has his own way of
representing his subjects and claims tho
tight to the style of his way of working
--that particular style may not be youra
or mine, but at the same time it may pos
sess good qualities. But the most unfor
tunate trail of many of the modern min
mimes is the strong feeling they show
toward the adoption of tricks, eccentric
mannerisms and peculiarities which are
merely evidences of fashionable craze.
To my mind a miniature cannot be too
highly finished; the old masters weie
¦Wilting to sit ami labor over their works
i\itil they reached the height of perfec
tion. They were life-like to a line ami
not mere suggestions of their subjects.
Why should not the painters of to-day be
vv-Sliing to give their time and patienco
a'so to attain the same end— for, after
all, am they not all striving to paint as
did the old masters?
There Is no use of any one attempting
,to do thla work without a thorough
knowledge of drawing. A student should
draw at least three years before attempt
ing to paint. A very good foundation in
miniature painting may be obtained -in
tMs city, but for perfect finish, likeness
and delicacy of touch and management.
It is necessary to study abroad, where
every advantage Is accessible; the teach
ings of the best masters and the guidance
of the masterpieces of ages. And, again,
the . very atmosphere of art which on«
finds only In the old countries Is a great
help to the student— «very one Is Imbued
with the spirit to work and work well,
too, and in this particular -line it means
more real bard and concentrating labor
than in many other branches of art — that
Is, If one wishes to make a success of It-
THE WOMAN
MINIATURE
PAINTERS
11
To-day is published in The
Sunday Call the second install-
ment of ''When Knighthood
Was in Flower," by Charles
Major. This* novel has truth-
fully been called the most
charming love story ever
written. As a drama it has
been on* of the greatest suc-
cesses that Julia Marlowe
ever played. ""When Knight-
hood Was in yiower" will b«
published complete in three
issues of the Sunday Call,
January 11, 18 and 25. The
Btory is illustrated by the
special . flashlight photo-
graphs taken by Byron, the
great New York photog-
rapher, especially for Hiss
Marlowe.

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