“The first virtue of a painting is to be a feast for the eyes.” — Eugene Delacroix
In our fine arts, not imitation, but creation is the aim. In landscapes the painter should give the suggestion of a fairer creation than we know. The details, the prose of nature, he should omit, and give us only the spirit and splendor. In a portrait he must inscribe the character, and not the features, and must esteem the man who sits to him as himself only an imperfect picture of the aspiring original within.
I am just beginning to understand what it is to paint. A painter should have two lives, one in which to learn, and one in which to practice his art.