A Dog Portrait

A Dog Portrait

This portrait of a whippet or greyhound is believed to be titled “Vick“. It’s from the oil painting (location unknown) by English artist Frank Paton, (1855-1909) and later engraved by Joseph Bishop Pratt (English, 1854-1910) and reproduced as a mezzotint on India paper published by E. E. Leggatt (Legatt Brothers) of 62 Cheapside, London. Although the editors of the Photographic Times state their reproduction plate is from a painting, its more likely the halftone shown here is from this mezzotint engraving. Another known companion work, titled “Dick” is of a Smooth-haired Fox Terrier done in 1886.

Frank Paton: 1855-1909

Frank Paton was an English artist of the Victorian and Edwardian eras, best known for his paintings of animals and scenes of rural life. He was a successful artist during his lifetime and could even count Queen Victoria as an admirer of his work. ⎯Wikipedia

 Joseph Bishop Pratt:  1854-1910

Pratt’s early engravings were chiefly in the ‘mixed’ manner, a combination of etching, line work and mezzotint, but a second period in his career began in 1896 from which date he confined himself to pure mezzotint and almost exclusively to subjects after the English painters of the Georgian era, who had then come into fashion.   ⎯ excerpt, biography: The Lytham St Annes Art Collection online resource

Editorial Comment for this plate:


THE dog portrait which accompanies this issue of The Photographic Times is a photographic copy of a painting, reproduced by the ElectroTint Engraving Company. Mr. Glayhorn, Manager of the Company, writes in regard to the process of reproduction, that it has been much improved of late, making it now possible to get a relief plate within a days’ time. ” The process is a secret one for the most part,” writes Mr. Glayhorn, “but is no longer an experiment with us, except as to how to improve ; and that is our constant aim. We do not have the necessity of various duplicating processes to get the relief plate from our half-tone negative. Mr. Purton was the first to invent a process of etching on copper from negatives. He puts it on the copper ready for etching, and after the latter is done—requiring but a very short time—the plate is practically ready for the press, needing only ‘ blocking ‘ and ‘ proving.’ He works this secretly, as we do the negative process.” Apart from the interest which “A Dog Portrait ” possesses as an excellent specimen of photo mechanical printing, it has a pictorial charm which entitles it to a place in The Photographic Times. It is a picture entirely possible for photography, and represents a class of work that can be cultivated by the camera with great satisfaction. (P. 639)

A Dog Portrait

Image Dimensions13.1 x 14.3 cm Published as supplemental plate for December 20, 1889 issue

Support Dimensions20.5 x 28.6 cm