Description - Thoughts on Art and Life by Da Vinci Leonardo Da Vinci
Excerpt: ...all the forms and effects of nature, he would certainly appear to me to be graced with great ignorance, inasmuch as these effects are infinite and our memory is not sufficiently capacious to retain them. Therefore, O painter, beware lest in thee the lust of gain should overcome the honour of thy art, for the acquisition of honour is a much 93 greater thing than the glory of wealth. Thus, for this and for other reasons which could be given, first strive in drawing to express to the eye in a manifest shape the idea and the fancy originally devised by thy imagination; then go on adding or removing until thou art satisfied; then arrange men as models, clothed or nude, according to the intention of thy work, and see that, as regards dimension and size, in accordance with perspective there is no portion of the work which is not in harmony with reason and natural effects, and this will be the way to win honour in thy art. Painting & Sculpture 34. I have myself practised the art of sculpture as well as that of painting, and I have practised both arts in the same degree. I think, therefore, that I can give an impartial opinion as to which of the two is the most difficult: the most perfect requires the greater talent, and is to be preferred. In the first place sculpture requires a certain light, that is to say, a light from above, and painting carries everywhere with it its light and shade; sculpture owes its importance to light and shade. The sculptor is aided in this by the relief which is inherent in sculpture, and the painter places the light and shade, by the accidental quality of his art, in the places where nature would naturally produce it. The sculptor cannot diversify his work by the various colours of objects; painting 94 is complete in every respect. The perspective of the sculptor appears to be altogether untrue; that of the painter can give the idea of a distance of a hundred miles beyond the picture. The sculptors have no aerial...
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