Technique and condition
This pencil, watercolour and gouache composition has been executed on white wove paper watermarked ‘HAYES & WISE 1799’. A preliminary sketch of the composition was drawn before paint was applied. The donkeys have been sketched and their limbs shaded in, which is an unusual practice for Turner. Watercolour applied over the top of the pencil shading gives the donkeys a metallic sheen. The watercolour was applied very wet to the donkeys, producing a very hard edge. Pigments used include Mars red, black, Indian yellow and possibly indigo.