Lessons on decorative design- PDF book by Frank G. Jackson

Lessons on decorative design.

Lessons on decorative design



The want of inexpensive textbooks on the subject of Decorative Design has long been felt both by students and teachers; hence the present publication. 

Its object is to assist young students in their early decorative attempts by showing them the constructive origin of ornamentation and to place before them such guiding principles and orderly methods as are found to underlie all true decoration of every kind. The contents of this handbook are based upon a course of lectures delivered at the Birmingham Municipal School of Art but limited to the elementary section only, as it was thought best to reserve the more advanced for a subsequent manual. To have extended the present work beyond its elementary scope would have placed it out of the reach of many students to whom it is hoped it may be of service.

In beginning this series of lessons on Decorative Design, I am confronted with the oft-repeated question, Can design be taught? The answer will depend upon how the word is accepted. If by the use of the term design, the pure invention is meant, then undoubtedly it cannot be taught; it is an impossibility. But if, on the other hand, simple composition or arrangement is implied, then it can be taught, for the laws that govern composition are capable of demonstration. Design, in the highest acceptation of the term, and composition stand in the same relation to one another as poetry to versification. The former cannot be taught: the rules that regulate the latter can be taught. Hence, then, I set aside the impossible, and devote the following pages to the setting forth of what admits of demonstration. In the study of Decorative Art, there are two books to be consulted: the Book of History, and the Book of Nature. These should be taken together, neither being neglected, for one explains the other. From the historical records of Art, we gather the results of experience and see the interpretation of natural laws. From Nature, we get inspiration and material for our practice. If we disregard what has been already done, we must ever remain in artistic infancy; and again, if we close our eyes to the works of Nature, relying upon the treasures of the past, then our work will be retrogressive from the want of that vitality which the study of Nature alone can give. 

the book details 
  • Author: Frank G Jackson 
  • Publication date:1913

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