Footnote from original book:
Dr. Brinckmann, p. 230 of the book previously quoted, says that in Japan "we look in vain for the painted types of the color-prints, since the artist who works for color-printing creates independent works of art by its means," while, on the contrary, he says of us that we claim triumphantly to have reached our aim in reproduction "when it becomes impossible to tell the original from the copy without close investigation." Dr. Brinckmann, indeed, contradicts himself, when, on p. 288, he speaks of the publication of the paintings of Korin and of his brother Kenzan, a. celebrated ceramic artist, by Hoitsu, about a century after the death of these artists, and Mr. Tokuno's statement that the highest aim of Japanese printing "is to produce impressions which an inexperienced eye can hardly distinguish from the original," certainly shows that the first statement made by the author named, however broadly it may apply to certain kinds of printing, is not true absolutely. Moreover, among the specimens sent to the U. S. National Museum by Mr. Tokuno, there are several reproductions of paintings, including a book in two volumes, "Shu bi gwa kan," or reduced copies of pictures drawn by eminent old artists of the Kioto or Shijo school.
Color-prints made without painted originals to work from are also found among our own productions, although they are of a subordinate rank and do not aspire to rival the brilliant productions of the Japanese color-printers. Sketches in color are rarely made for the colored pictures in the comic journals like "Puck." These pictures are printed from four stones, one giving the design and modelling in black or brown, the other three supplying the coloring by means of Iris tints, two running in one direction, the third at right angles to it, and these Iris tints are mostly adjusted on the press under the direction of the designer, without an original by which to be guided. A small specimen of this kind is shown in Frame 67 A, on the eastern side of the Hall of Graphic Arts. Much more brilliant work has, however, been done by the same means. The old chiaroscuro printers were also in a measure independent of the artist not only sometimes adding tints to designs by artists long dead, but varying these tints for the same picture. The tint blocks for Durer's portrait of Varnbuler, for instance, were added after his death, and there are impressions in brownish and in greenish tints. In this case the liberties taken by the printer were permissible, from the same cause which favors the Japanese color-printers, that is to say, because the coloring and lighting of the old chiaroscuros are purely conventional.