Frederick A. Draper
We have now reached that part of the work in which use will be made of all the materials and furnishings previously described. Other necessary adjuncts will be considered when treating of the special work occasioning their use. With a case of type inclined at a suitable angle on a stand before the compositor, the composing stick, fitted with composing rule, held in the left hand as shown in the illustration, the type is gathered with the right hand from their several boxes and placed in the composing stick. This may seem merely a matter of learning the location of the boxes, but experience will show that much enters into it, not noticeable by the casual observer. The beginner should make every effort to follow the methods which long experience have shown to be necessary when quickness and accuracy are to be acquired without undue fatigue to the limbs and body. One important matter is that of the attitude assumed, a correct one requiring the front of. the case, (lower case if a pair) to be level with the elbow, and a platform should be used by short people to secure the correct height. While not keeping the body rigid, excessive motion is to be avoided as tending to tire the worker. The eye should preceed the movements of the hands about the case, the types to be taken being observed with special reference to having the hand secure each one with a single attempt, and not have to make several trials before succeeding. It will be found easiest to do this if the forefinger and thumb are held nearly vertical, and the type taken up by the top ends, the eye having previously located the type to be taken. While carrying to the stick, the fingers turn the type, when necessary, so that the correct end shall be uppermost, and the " nick" on the upper or open side of the stick.
The beginning of a line is at the end of the stick nearest the wrist or adjustable end, and if part of a paragraph, the first line is indented an em quad. In book-work an indention of one and one-half or two em quads is sometimes given, according to the length of the line, and whether widely leaded or not. Immedi-ately after securing one type, the eye is directed to the box for the next one, as, to become a rapid compositor, every movement of eye and hand must be that which will do the most work with the least exertion, and in the shortest time. When the foot of the type has been placed in contact with the one previously placed, release the hold of the fingers, allowing the type to drop into place with a slight "click." In the smaller sizes of type, the end of the left thumb is lightly pressed against the type. and gently lowers it into the stick. Before each word put a "thick" or 3 em space. With very "extended" advertising type, an en quad is often used for spacing. When a line is about completed, observe the words which follow, and select the word or syllable with which to begin the next line. It will frequently happen that the last word or syllable does not exactly till the line, being a trifle short or over the needed length.
In such a case the thick spaces are replaced with en quads or middling spaces as the case may be. Such changes in the spacing are made, where possible, between words which do not end in the same vertical line with those in the line above; i.e., the aim in spacing should be much the same as with shingling a roof, to "break joints." This idea can be followed only to a limited extent, however, and is qualified by another equally important one of avoiding the division of words and use of the hyphen, wherever possible to space out the line without using too wide or too thin spacing. In setting very narrow measure, words may occur in such order that no division in the end word is possible, and to put this word on the following line would require objectionably wide spacing in those remaining. In such a case "thin" spaces are put between the letters of one or more words to lengthen them and thus reduce the spacing between words to correct space.
The aim in spacing is to have all lines of exactly uniform length, and much care must be used to secure this, otherwise, the type cannot be firmly locked up in the chase. A " pied" form will take far greater time to make right than will be required to secure correct spacing. It frequently happens that in setting a line, the type will incline a little to one side, thus preventing the final spacing. This is avoided as much as possible by the pressure of the left thumb, but may be entirely removed by lifting the end of the line towards which the types lean, putting in the last space necessary to justify the line, and then pressing the type down into the stick.
The following punctuation marks are usually cast on a thin body, and should each have a thin space between it and the preceeding word: - ; : ! ?. For the quotation, commas are turned (") the opposite way from that when used regular; two apostrophes (") being used at the end of the quotation. Parantheses ( ) and brackets [ ] are not separated by spaces from the words they enclose, the same character answering for both ends by turning one. Place a thick space after the comma.
As composition proceeds, it is desirable to glance along the line, before finally spacing out, to see if the correct letters have been obtained. The experienced compositor does this with the faces of the type upside down, and to the beginner this will be rather confusing, but practice will soon make it easy to do this. Corrections are more easily made if the line has not been spaced, and require much less time and trouble than when made in the galley or form. A "clean proof " should be the aim of every compositor; one full of errors indicates either carelessness in setting up, or in the previous distribution, and is quite likely to share in both these faults. The copy is usually read when picking up the spaces, close observation not being necessary to secure them. The varying thicknesses of letters will frequently help to detect a wrong letter which has been dropped into a different box from that to which it belongs.
Some job fonts contain two styles of the same letter, as here illustrated, s and the custom being to use that of eccentric shape only at the ending of a word or line. The words "of" and "the are also included in some job fonts, their use being regulated by the make up of the surrounding type. Upon the completion of one line, the next is begun after placing a lead, if single leaded, or two leads if double leaded, against the line of type.
Whan we speak of an instantaneous exposure, we think we have given something very short. And it is very difficult to realize that our conception of time, according to human standards, may be very far away from what actually takes place. Now, light is estimated in round figures to travel at 190,000 miles per second, and if we estimate the length of the beam that is admitted by our shutter when making a snapshot, we shall get some idea of the enormous possibilities of energy expended in producing the image. For instance, we set our shutter for the l-20th of a second; that means that a stream of light 9.500 miles long has entered our lens and impinged on the plate, and even for l-1000th of a second exposure means a stream 190 miles long to work with; or. again, if we have occasion to give five minutes exposure, the light that enters the camera last had not left the sun's surface when we began the exposure. Photographic News.