Quote of the Day : Leonardo da Vinci


“A painter should begin every canvas with a wash of black, because all things in nature are dark except where exposed by the light.”

Leonardo da VInci

The Origins of the Quote

Studying about light and photography, inadvertently will bring the student to this quote. It is as though, if one hasn’t assimilated this concept, or idea they cannot move forward in the artistic disciplines; be it painting, photography of graphic designing. The quote is some sort of key much like the cryptograms that da Vinci so loved. He is outlining the format not just of art, but he gives a heads up that sufficiently keeps all confusion at bay! Focussing on the myriad colours will lead to endless eddies (that he loved studying himself).

Getting to Know the Man behind the Characters

The famous quote by Leonardo is definitive of his nature. Childish, curious and unafraid, and overloaded with talent he worked hard to hone his genius. Just so like his quote – his canvas too began with a wash of black, and he gradually worked onto it colours that he likened to. For this artist, architect, scientist, writer and creative soul, there was nothing that was impossible.

The more one reads and views the work of the inimitable Leonardo da Vinci, it sinks in that he is more relevant to contemporary times than ever. One can safely say, that over the last several decades, interest in all things da Vinci has only grown. Perhaps this has not so much to do with his charming personality and more to do with the fact that he had discovered a great truth. The impetus of science in life. The logic behind all that occurred fired his imagination and completely consumed him. In the times of multi-talented, multi-faceted, it is the seeds of the Renaissance Man that holds several secrets. To understand the construct of all creation and apply it through art, is where his brilliance lay.

Some Final Thoughts

It can easily be said that he is one of histories beloved characters. Not because he was a bad boy but because he devoutly holds our interest, and will continue to do so for the generations coming. It makes one think, that perhaps there will be a time when his inventions will be studied with great intent and they may make way for several discoveries. His concepts were crystal clear and so he spoke with a certain level of absolution.

Da Vinci understood light, and thereby colour and his mathematical brain deduced the simple truth born out of that formula.


Check out our Quote of the Day archive where we bring you quotes hand picked by me, Divvya Nirula. Sharing the stories, people, moments behind the inspiration and thought provoking words.