NPG P125 (4a/4b/4c/4d)
Letter from G.F. Watts to J.M. Cameron, dated 19 October 1872, giving an assessment of her recent photographs and advice on how to improve.
Oct. 19. 1872
My dear Mrs Cameron,
I have jotted down agreeably to your wishes some remarks against each Photo, of course no attempt at a critical lecture, all the specimens are as a rule good, cleaner, sharper, more even in tone, & better in composition in as much as the lines are less broken, but composition requires study. There are a few
rules to be laid down, but they will not carry you far. I should advise you to get some Photographs from prints after the greatest masters.
I think the Cupid the most beautiful Thing you have done at all. The head is blurred which is a pity, & the feet come together in a manner that suggests a cloven foot! but the last might have been easily modified by throwing some shadow
on the farther foot, also the wing on the farther side would have been much better for a shadow, but the thing is to me extremely beautiful & suggestive of colour, with a thousand thanks I shall return the Photos in the first place I cannot think of taking so much property, & in the second I really have not any place for such large prints, I shall keep one of each the childrens' picture & the Cupid & Alathea. I should like to have another copy of no 2 of the children
all of these I must pay for
I must not scribble any more for fear of missing the post