shita-e 下絵
KEY WORD : art history / paintings
A detailed preliminary drawing prepared before undertaking an actual painting hon-e 本絵. The first step in creating a painting is to make a small, rough sketch *kojita-e 小下絵; then a more detailed depiction, the shita-e, is drawn in the same dimensions as the final work. Many extant shita-e show evidence of reworking in erasable charcoal, ink lines which have been corrected with white pigments, or small pieces of paper with additions or corrections cut and pasted onto them. The most common method for transferring the underdrawing to the final surface was to place the silk or paper over the shita-e and trace the image *sukiutsushi 透写し. For surfaces such as walls or sliding doors where this was impossible, a kind of carbon paper *nenshi 念紙 was employed to transfer the design. Sometimes a sharp-edged tool was used to impress tthe lines of the drawing onto the painting surface *sujibori 筋彫. During the Kamakura and Muromachi periods, shita-e for portraits were specifically called *kamigata 紙形.


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