This section is from "The Horticulturist, And Journal Of Rural Art And Rural Taste", by P. Barry, A. J. Downing, J. Jay Smith, Peter B. Mead, F. W. Woodward, Henry T. Williams. Also available from Amazon: Horticulturist and Journal of Rural Art and Rural Taste.
Now that the pears and apples of the later and more valuable varieties are ripening, I wish to suggest to all cultivators desiring to preserve of accurate outlines of their fruit for future reference or comparison, a plan, although by no means new, yet not very generally known or practiced.
In the first place, have prepared a neat book of clean white paper; drawing paper would be preferable, if you should wish to have them shaded at a future time; but fair writing paper not ruled will answer a good purpose. Now take your pear, and divide it equally through the greatest diameter, taking care, also, to divide the stem with it; then lay it flat upon a loose sheet of glazed paper, and with a black lead pencil draw its outline by running it around the pear. You will then have an accurate representation, but the juice of the fruit has soiled the paper; and although your outline is perfect, yet there is nothing neat about it. To obviate this difficulty, it is necessary to transfer it from the loose sheet of paper to the book. It is done in this manner: remove the juice by soaking it up with blotting paper before it has had time to strike through the glazing, and dampen the body of the paper; then take the original outline, and lay it on the book in the place on which you wish to have it transferred; place between the two a sheet of transfer paper, and by passing again over the outline with a fine point you will have an exact duplicate, neat and clean, upon your book.
The core, seed vessels, etc., can be transferred in the same manner, by laying a piece of tracing paper upon the flat side of the cut fruit, and with a fine brush tracing around them-and then by the former process transferring it to the outline already prepared, the transparent tracing paper enabling one to fit each outline to the other. When one becomes a little expert at it, the whole tracing may be made from the fruit, but it would be better to stretch the tracing paper on a frame, then place it as near the fruit as possible without touching it, and make the tracing with a fine brush and India ink, this requiring no pressure on the paper, as in using a lead pencil. We have seen outlines made from the fruit on common brown paper; this readily absorbs the juice, and in drying, the outline becomes somewhat distorted, and is always more or less discolored. Exterior peculiarities may be added with a lead pencil, and weight, color, and time of ripening, in fact, the whole history, should be carefully written out beneath.
Those who are experimenting in fruit culture should devote several pages to each variety, that they may thus be able to compare the results of different years.
It must be borne in mind that a sectional outline thus made appears less in size than the real fruit, although in reality it is the exact size. When it is desirable to show the apparent size of the original, a finished drawing should be made from the same outline. Shadow gives the appearance of rotundity, and thus apparently increases the size; this last is, however, artistic, while the other can be done by any one possessing a medium amount of intelligence.
Duplicate outlines can be made on tracing paper, and transferred to letter sheets, if one should wish to mail them to friends.
Transfer paper comes in a package of four sheets, green, blue, black, and red, or four sheets of a single color, for twenty-five cents, and may be had at almost any stationer's. Tracing paper is sold at six cents a sheet Fifty cents' worth of the two will last any one almost a lifetime.
Leaves of almost every description can be beautifully transferred to the most delicate fibre, by laying them on the green transfer paper, and rubbing them with an ivory paper folder, so that each part comes in contact with the paper; then place them on clean white paper, and repeat the same process. It is often desirable to preserve fac-similes of the leaves of fruit trees, grape vines, etc.
[The above will, we think, be interesting to a great many of our readers. Out line drawings of fruit are usually made directly in the book, without the use of transfer paper; but this soils the book, however carefully done. Where transfer paper can not be had, let the specimen dry for a few moments after being cut, and greater neatness will be obtained. Where it is intended to shade the drawing, two outlines must be transferred to the book, one with the core and the other without; it is only the latter that can be shaded. There should also be an outline of the fruit in its least diameter. There is nothing, however, equal to a good portrait of fruit; but there is not half a dozen persons in the whole country who can make a good one. - Ed].