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Kim D.
Kim D., Antique Expert & Certified Appraiser
Category: Appraisals
Satisfied Customers: 6661
Experience:  25 Yr Decorative & Fine Art, Historic Object Expert, CAGA, AOA, Certified Appraiser
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How do I get a pencil drawing appraised, the water mark is

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How do I get a pencil drawing appraised, the water mark is J. Whatman Turkey Mill 1821
the drawing is dated 1835 and its a donkey being fed by a man leaning over a fence with a bundle of hay. The drawing is very well drawn, but not complete, but maybe just a study
of subjects for a painting. The drawing was brought in an auction 40 years ago, either in Somerset, or around Castle Hedingham area. My father and I went to lots of house auctions in both areas and I think the drawing was in a folder with lots of other drawings, which I still have. I now live in Norfolk, but I would be willing to travel to have the right appraisal done. Hope to hear from you soon. jan quickfall.
Hello. My name isXXXXX and I am a certified appraiser with 25 years in a museum and in the field much it with high quality fine art.

An appraiser most likely can not attribute this work without a signature but certainly they could assess the drawing or study onsite and give you a sense of the appraisal value.

The watermark by James Whatman tells us that this is a very fine support. Whatman was an early paper mill which does enhance the value as their papers were prized and are today but some of those papers watermarks have been forged so an onsite look is important and this should be discussed with the person that you decide to meet with.

In your region, London is going to be the best place to have this seen. Sothebys is the best for 19th century drawings but Christies is a close second and has many more specialist so they maybe easier to make an appointment and be seen.

A full appraisal could cost a bit as it is an in-depth written document so you may want to talk to them about a visual assessment (and discuss possible sale for your own information) They do require an appointment but will meet with the public to discuss the work. Then you might decide to do a fuller assessment after you talk to them. With a bit of a travel this would be helpful too to know who you are meeting with at a set time.

Here are the departments that you want to contact. I would call rather then email as they are very busy auction houses and an email is easily lost. If you can not reach the specialist in Sothebys British department of drawings, I have added the British painting specialist and a general telephone number that could direct you.

All my best with this nice piece - I think you are in an excellent position being only about 2 hours away from London where the best houses of art are located with excellent British drawing departments! Enjoy the journey, (see below)
Kim D.
PS If you have other items of interest please remember my name. Any post addressed to “Kim D” at the head of the question will be sent to my inbox so I can help my return patrons first!

I would be more than happy to work with you again!

British Watercolours & Drawings 1550-1850
Mark Griffith-Jones
Deputy Director

Tel: +44 20 7293 5083 [email protected]

Julian Gascoigne
Deputy Director
British Pictures 1550-1850
Tel: +44 20 7293 5482 [email protected]

Sothebys General Telephone
34-35 New Bond Street
London W1A 2AA UK
Tel: +44 20 7293 5000

British Drawings and Watercolor after 1600
Rosy Temple
Junior Specialist [email protected]
Tel:+44 (0)20 7389 2709

Rosie Jarvie
Senior Consultant [email protected]
Tel:+44 (0)207(NNN) NNN-NNNN

Kim D. and other Appraisals Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Dear Kim D, Thank you for your reply, but I do not know if I can afford to
go to London and see an expert at one of those big auction houses, I will
have to wait and see if I can get somebody nearer home. We are in our 70's
and on Pension Credit so even this amount is a struggle and I should have
marked the lower price. Thank you for your help, but I will not be taking
it any further, thanks again. jan .

Jan - No problem. I guess that I wasnt clear that there is no cost to meet with the auction houses. You just need an appointment. It sounds like you could use some money so if you have the time you may want to take a small road trip and meet with them about a sale. It maybe a fine piece.

Bonhams meets with the public as well for free and has public days but I believe that you would want to set up a time to meet. It can not hurt to talk to them. Sothebys is just the best for drawings and a watermark such as this but Christies and Bonhams are great resources too. It could only mean a day in London to learn more..not a bad outing.

:) Kim

19th Century Pictures (US)

Tel: +1 212 644 9108

Fax: +1 212 644 9007


19th Century Pictures (UK)

Tel: +44 20 7468 8232

Fax: +44 20 7447 7434

Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Thank you for the information about charges for assessments, we may try and give Bonhams a ring as there are a couple of branches in Norfolk. You have been helpful, but I should have clicked on a lower price for the information received, I wasn't sure exactly what we were paying for to start with, and thought it might have been for you to see the drawing and give us some advice. Sorry if I got it wrong. Thanks anyway, jan quickfall.

This is a good way to go. A trip wont cost anything but you might learn something new!

I am sorry for any confusion. I so appreciate your patronage. I do not have the ability to see what happened on the financial end, Jan.

I suspect that you can talk to our Support team. I so want you to be happy.

Please do make sure that I am paid some portion as I did spend quite a bit of time with you and that is the only way we are paid for our expertise. Be in touch and best wishes my friend,
Kim D.