Oysters open completely when the moon is full; and when the crab sees one it throws a piece of stone or seaweed into it and the oyster cannot close again so that it serves the crab for meat. Such is the fate of him who opens his mouth too much and thereby puts himself at the mercy of the listener.
The fox when it sees a flock of herons or magpies or birds of that kind, suddenly flings himself on the ground with his mouth open to look as he were dead; and these birds want to peck at his tongue, and he bites off their heads.
When you put your hand in a flowing stream, you touch the last that has gone before and the first of what is still to come.
When you draw a nude, sketch the whole figure and nicely fit the members to it and to each other. Even though you may only finish one portion of the drawing, just make certain that all the parts hang together, so that the study will be useful to you in the future.
Drawing is based upon perspective, which is nothing else than a thorough knowledge of the function of the eye.
The air moves like a river and carries the clouds with it; just as running water carries all the things that float upon it.
I love this site. It was lovingly hand-shaped it. Your soul transformed this into this art. It was perfect. I have tried to create another equal to it... but to no avail, so I will just have to paint the Sistine Chapel.
To such an extent does nature delight and abound in variety that among her trees there is not one plant to be found which is exactly like another; and not only among the plants, but among the boughs, the leaves and the fruits, you will not find one which is exactly similar to another.
Once you have tasted flight, you will forever walk the earth with your eyes turned skyward, for there you have been, and there you will always long to return.
If you are alone you belong entirely to yourself. If you are accompanied by even one companion you belong only half to yourself or even less in proportion to the thoughtlessness of his conduct and if you have more than one companion you will fall more deeply into the same plight.
I have from an early age abjured the use of meat, and the time will come when men such as I will look upon the murder of animals as they now look upon the murder of men.
Patience serves as a protection against wrongs as clothes do against cold. For if you put on more clothes as the cold increases, it will have no power to hurt you. So in like manner you must grow in patience when you meet with great wrongs, and they.
A good painter has two main objects to paint, man and the intention of his soul. The former is easy, the latter hard as he has to represent it by the attitude and movement of the limbs.
The mind of the painter must resemble a mirror, which always takes the colour of the object it reflects and is completely occupied by the images of as many objects as are in front of it.
For, verily, great love springs from great knowledge of the beloved object, and if you little know it, you will be able to love it only little or not at all.
Nature is the source of all true knowledge. She has her own logic, her own laws, she has no effect without cause nor invention without necessity.
How many emperors and how many princes have lived and died and no record of them remains, and they only sought to gain dominions and riches in order that their fame might be ever-lasting.
People talk to people who perceive nothing, who have open eyes and see nothing; they shall talk to them and receive no answer; they shall adore those who have ears and hear nothing; they shall burn lamps for those who do not see.
All knowledge which ends in words will die as quickly as it came to life, with the exception of the written word: which is its mechanical part.
Necessity is the mistress and guide of nature. Necessity is the theme and inventress of nature, her curb and her eternal law.
Weight, force and casual impulse, together with resistance, are the four external powers in which all the visible actions of mortals have their being and their end.
Man and animals are in reality vehicles and conduits of food, tombs of animals, hostels of Death, coverings that consume, deriving life by the death of others.
The painter who draws merely by practice and by eye, without any reason, is like a mirror which copies every thing placed in front of it without being conscious of their existence.
Although nature commences with reason and ends in experience it is necessary for us to do the opposite, that is to commence with experience and from this to proceed to investigate the reason.
The beginnings and ends of shadow lie between the light and darkness and may be infinitely diminished and infinitely increased. Shadow is the means by which bodies display their form. The forms of bodies could not be understood in detail but for shadow.
The divisions of Perspective are 3, as used in drawing; of these, the first includes the diminution in size of opaque objects; the second treats of the diminution and loss of outline in such opaque objects; the third, of the diminution and loss of colour at long distances.
As every divided kingdom falls, so every mind divided between many studies confounds and saps itself.
Experience never errs; it is only your judgments that err by promising themselves effects such as are not caused by your experiments.
Experience never misleads; what you are misled by is only your judgment, and this misleads you by anticipating results from experience of a kind that is not produced by your experiments.
Painting is concerned with all the 10 attributes of sight; which are: Darkness, Light, Solidity and Colour, Form and Position, Distance and Propinquity, Motion and Rest.
Just as food eaten without appetite is a tedious nourishment, so does study without zeal damage the memory by not assimilating what it absorbs.