Saint Jerome (recto); Soldier with a Spear (verso)
Carpaccio was among the first to explore the possibilities of drawing on blue paper. This study of an old man was made for the figure of Saint Jerome in the altarpiece of the cathedral of Zadar (Croatia), painted about 1493. The artist built up the forms through straight lines that correspond to his stiff conception of the figure, but his choice of media suffuses the drawing with a sense of atmosphere and light. The drawing of a soldier with a spear on the back of the sheet is likely a preparatory study as well.
Vittore Carpaccio (Italian, Venice 1460/66?–1525/26 Venice)