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Line and Form (1900)   By: (1845-1915)

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First published, medium 8vo , 1900.

Reprinted, crown 8vo , 1902, 1904, 1908, 1912, 1914.




In the original of this work, most pages are headed by a topic phrase so that a topic can be located quickly by riffling the pages of the book. In this etext, the same topic phrases can be found right aligned above the paragraph that begins that topic. Thus a topic can be found by scrolling the text and scanning the right margin.

The original of this work is copiously illustrated. Although this etext cannot include the figures, it does include their caption as lines like the following:

[Illustration (f002): The Origin of Outline]

Here f002 is a numeric label for the figure. Because an etext of this type does not have page numbers, in references to a figure in the List of Illustrations and in the Index these figure labels are used instead of page number. In the body text, references to figures by page number have been supplemented with the figure labels.

The illustrations f006, f007, f008 and f016 do not have captions in the original and descriptive captions have been added.

The caret is used to indicate superscripts, for example ED^wd^ indicates ED followed by a small superscript "wd".

Two minor typographical errors were corrected: "thing" to "think" on page 10 and "intregal" to "integral" on page 197.


As in the case of "The Bases of Design," to which this is intended to form a companion volume, the substance of the following chapters on Line and Form originally formed a series of lectures delivered to the students of the Manchester Municipal School of Art.

There is no pretension to an exhaustive treatment of a subject it would be difficult enough to exhaust, and it is dealt with in a way intended to bear rather upon the practical work of an art school, and to be suggestive and helpful to those face to face with the current problems of drawing and design.

These have been approached from a personal point of view, as the results of conclusions arrived at in the course of a busy working life which has left but few intervals for the elaboration of theories apart from practice, and such as they are, these papers are now offered to the wider circle of students and workers in the arts of design as from one of themselves.

They were illustrated largely by means of rough sketching in line before my student audience, as well as by photographs and drawings. The rough diagrams have been re drawn, and the other illustrations reproduced, so that both line and tone blocks are used, uniformity being sacrificed to fidelity.

WALTER CRANE. Kensington, July, 1900.



Origin and Function of Outline Silhouette Definition of Boundaries by Power of Characterization by Formation of Letters Methods of Drawing in Line The Progressive Method The Calligraphic Method The Tentative Method The Japanese Direct Brush Method The Oval Method The Rectangular Method Quality of Line Linear Expression of Movement Textures Emotion Scale of Linear Expression 1


The Language of Line Dialects Comparison of the Style of Various Artists in Line Scale of Degrees in Line Picture Writing Relation of Line to Form Two Paths The Graphic Purpose Aspect The Ornamental Purpose Typical Treatment or Convention Rhythm Linear Plans in Pattern Designing Wall paper Design Controlling Forms Memory Evolution in Design Variety in Unity Counterbalance Linear Logic Recurring... Continue reading book >>

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