This week I went to see the pilasters Jack Cadwell is building for the 1795 re-created entrance.
Of course, they look fine: shiny and new, true copies of our shop drawings.
We like them. We know they will look fine. The details that will make us wince may be glaring to us, but invisible to others. In fact, one of us will probably be aware of how something could have been done better that the other of us doesn't notice.
I will be looking especially at the shadows: are they strong enough? too deep? And at proportions: We aren't making an exact copy: we have nothing that accurate to go by. But did we catch the sense? If not, what exactly did we miss? Did the pattern and proportion put the emphasis in the right places? Does the entrance work as a whole? Does it all 'integrate seamlessly'? (How about those fancy words?!)
This something I can't gauge now because the grain of the wood of the columns is so prominent and I am seeing the parts from 20 ft away, not 200, under interior lighting. The subtlety of proportion and pattern will not be visible until they are painted, assembled with the fan and its surround, and set in place, framing the door - at which point any mistakes we made will be too late to fix...