Ellen G. White Writings

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Manuscript Releases, vol. 8 [Nos. 526-663], Page 456

MR No. 663—Pictures in The Desire of Ages

I wish to say to you that I am sadly disappointed in the cuts prepared for such a book as the Life of Christ. I consider that if Brother A accepts such figures that his eye and taste has lost its cunning. You cannot expect me to be pleased with such productions. Look at these figures critically, and you must see that they are either made from Catholic designs or Catholic artists. The picture of Mary has a man's face, the representations of Christ with the two fingers prominent, while the others are closed, is wholly a Catholic sign and I object to this. I see but very little beauty in any of the faces, or persons. There is the scenery of nature, landscape scenery, that is not as objectionable, but I could never rest my eyes upon the face pictures without pain.

I would much prefer to have no pictures than representations that are not representations, but disfigurements of the true. This is my opinion. Where is the discerning eye? Better pay double price, or treble, and have pictures, if pictures must be had, that will not pervert facts. I wish there had not been an attempt to make one representation, but send out the book and let it make a place for itself. I call these faces in the pictures and scenes so poorly represented that it is a perversion of the facts.

If this is A's work, I cannot accept him as a designer, and if he can accept such pictures I cannot respect or honor his judgment. Do not spoil my book by disfigurements which lower the facts and the matters they represent. Brother A needs the sanctification of the senses to understand the spirituality of truth. He may study European artistic skill, but there will

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