|Medium:||etching and drypoint|
|Size:||231 x 162 mm|
|Signed:||butterfly at upper left (6-final)|
|No. of States:||8|
|Catalogues:||K.407; M.406; W.264|
|Impressions taken from this plate (33)|
The main composition is etched, but drypoint shading and cross-hatching were used extensively in the shadows, and to reinforce the shadows as they wore down, during the development of the image through eight states.
A comparatively large edition of The Pierrot was printed. The '1st proof pulled' was printed in dark brown ink on thin ivory laid paper (). Likewise an impression inscribed '3rd proof pulled' (which is of the second state) is in dark brown on ivory laid paper (). Another, also inscribed '3rd proof pulled' (this time, a fourth state) is on cream laid paper, possibly Asian paper (). In each case ink tone was carefully wiped to suggest reflections in the water.
Whistler was satisfied with the composition in the sixth state, signed it with a butterfly (shaded to blend with the shadowy facade) and started to keep a record of printing, writiing the date on impressions, as follows:
These notes appear to mean that these impressions were the fourth and fifth impressions printed on 23 February 1890, the second printed on 25 February and, similarly, the second printed two days later, on 27 February. Other notations may have been rubbed out, worn down or not recorded (the writing is extremely small).
Impressions of the sixth state printed on 23 February were on cream or ivory laid paper (, ); those on 25 February, on ivory laid paper with the 'PRO PATRIA' watermark, including both the impression of The Pierrot and one of Nocturne: Dance House (); and on 27 February, again on ivory laid paper ().
One sixth state is on cream Japanese paper () and others on cream laid including one with a Pro Patria watermark (). Impressions of the following state are on Japanese paper () and of the eighth on both western papers, such as buff () and cream wove - though the latter may be an Asian paper () - and on Asian papers including cream () and ivory Japan (, ) and cream Asian laid (, ).