Investigating drawing - Pouncing
King Henry VIII; King Henry VII
by Hans Holbein the Younger
A method of transferring a drawing or design to another surface such as canvas, panel or fresco, by dabbing pounce (fine powder of charcoal or chalk) through pinpricks marking the outlines of the drawing. The design is therefore reproduced on the surface below as a series of dots.
This portrait is a preparatory drawing on paper, or cartoon, for the left-hand section of a wall painting for the Privy Chamber of Whitehall Palace. The painting was destroyed in the Whitehall Palace fire of 1698. The cartoon is on several joined sheets of paper and is exactly the same size as the finished version, and was used to transfer Holbein's position to the intended position on the wall.