Sketchbook for study (Multiple pages)
by Unknown Artist
dated 1909 – 1915
Pencil, Ink and Pasted Photographs on paper 27 leaves of handmade paper
9.5 x 6.75 in. (24.1 cm x 17.1 cm)
Artists study faces alongwith human anatomy before they start a work on a painting or pichwai. Conceptually behind every good painting lies a good sketch. The sense of spontaneity and expressiveness is found in the sketches and finds expression in the finished paintings. Sketches bear intimate records of the artist’s hand and one can actually follow his creative process.
This sketch of Govardhanlalji is taken from a sketch book of an artist that also contains sketches of various other reputed Gossainjis like Kanakraiji from Mathura, Chimanlalji from Mumbai, Gopaldasji from Gokul, Balkrishnalalji from Ahmedabad and many others. Since, pilgrims came from different towns and demanded paintings of different Gossainjis, these, sketches acted as a reference point while painting the required personage. This particular sketch book also contains personal records of the artist such as orders taken for paintings as well as festive decorations and inscriptions.
One can see that this is a sketch of Govardhanlalji in a sitting posture on a European style chair holding a cane. His hand is resting on a similar table that has a vase with flowers and books. The face, for some reason, must have got smudged by the artist and hence, he has redrawn the face in another sketch to the left.