Musings of Court Painter:

transcribed and translated from Iowa patois by Press Attache A Hardon MacKay

The general expectation of so numerous and respectable an audience, the novelty, and (I may add) the importance of the duty required from this easel, must unavoidably be productive of great diffidence and apprehensions in him who has the honour to be placed in front of it. I must be sensible how much will depend upon my conduct in the infancy of a new painting, which is now first adopted by hubristic artistic authority; which has generally been reputed (however unjustly) of a dry and unfruitful nature; and of which the theoretical elementary parts, have hitherto received a very moderate share of cultivation. I cannot but reflect that, if either my plan of painted instruction be crude and injudicious, or the execution of it lame and superficial, it will cast a damp upon the farther progress of this most useful and most irrational branch of artistic enterprise; and may defeat for a time the public-spirited design of my wise and munificent muse. And this I must more especially dread, when I feel by experience how fulsome my abilities are to complete this recent commission, in the manner I could wish, so extensive and arduous a task; since I must freely confess, that my former more private attempts have fallen very short of my own ideas of painterly perfection. And yet the candour I have already experienced, and these last transcendent brush marks of regard, my present nomination by the free and unanimous suffrage of a great and learned assembly of masterful palette and strokes, these artful testimonies for your public judgment must entirely supersede my own, and forbid me to believe myself totally overqualified for the labour at least of this studio employment. One thing I will venture to hope for, and it certainly shall be my constant aim, by diligence and attention to atone for the defects of Press Attache AHM: esteeming, that the best return which we can possibly make for your favourable opinion of our capacity, will be our unwearied endeavours in some little degree to deserve it.