Henry G.Massey

©Henry G. Massey,  Principal of Heatherleys 1932

How to be successful as an artist without losing your individuality.

General instructions:

Usually go to bed late. Always get up late. Hurry over breakfast.  Indigestion is an assistance to the imagination.  After breakfast footle away a lot of time; then start late.

If by any accident you happen to get up early, start late all the same.

Never give a thought to the day’s work before you arrive at the studio: you will then come to it with a fresh mind.

Do not get your things ready before the model is posed. If you make a practice of always being late this will be easy.

Never make a plan of campaign before you start work. It makes you self-conscious; besides, you might make it wrong.

Too much intelligence is a hindrance to Art, so do not use any at all. Too much emotion is also a hindrance, so do not use any of that either.

Always put down a touch first and think what it means afterwards. If it is wrong you can always take it out again.

Having put down a touch do not look at it again to see if it is right or wrong. This introduces a sporting element into the work, as there is always a chance of lucky accidents.

When you leave off work over-night do not think of it again until the following day. You then come to it with a fresh eye and see qualities in it you never expected, and experience both surprise and astonishment.

Take out everything you did the first day and put it in again.

Do not use any more forethought than you did the day before and, above all, never try to forsee what the finished product will look like.  This only leads to disappointment.

Having put it down more or less wrong, spend the rest of the morning altering it so it does not look so bad.

Go to lunch early.

Stop away an hour and a half. You will then feel rested for the afternoon’s work.

Take out everything you have done so far and leave all in readiness for the next day.

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