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Quotes from “Alla Prima”, Richard Schmid

“The thing we label as talent is not a single ability. It is a complex mixture of motive, curiosity, receptivity, intelligence, sensitivity, good teaching, perseverance, timing, sheer luck, and countless other things.”

“Serious painting is not something that can be learned casually. You must be willing to sacrifice many other things.”

“I regard my disasters as invitations to learn more.”

“Art happens in the mind of the person seeing them.”

“Don’t reject difficult ideas simply because you fail to grasp them immediately. Put them on hold until you do, then decide. Many things in painting become clear only after considerable experience, and that takes time.”

“The reason why painting remains so demanding is because as you improve, your results will grow more rewarding, which will push you to increase your skill.”

“Stick to simple solutions unless there is a good reason to do otherwise.”

“A painting is finished when nothing added can make it better.”

“First you must have the skills to control your actions, then you can cut loose and have fun.”

“There is no contradiction between being in control and giving free rein to your energy.”

“Looseness arises from freedom, which comes with superb control. Looseness should describe how a painting looks, not how it is done.”

“Never knowingly leave anything wrong on your canvas.”

“In painting, as in many other things in life, less is usually better than more.”

“Before you take a brush, take some time to think about what you intend to do.”

Main image: “Hidden Treasures”, detail, artist Richard Schmid