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BROWNE, Alexander, Ars Pictoria : or an Academy Treating of Drawing, Painting, Limning, Etching. To which are Added XXXI. Copper Plates, Expressing the Choicest, Nearest, and Most Exact Grounds and Rules of Symmetry. Collected out of the most Eminent Italian, German, and Netherland Authors. By Alexander Browne, Practitioner in the Art of Limning. The Second Edition, Corrected and Enlarged by the Author, London, Arthur Tooker - William Battersby, 1675.1 quotations
Now the Painter expresseth two things with his colour : First the colour of the thing, whether it be artificial or natural, which he doth with the like colour, as the colour of a blew garment with artificial blew, or the green colour of a Tree with the like green : Secondly he expresseth the light of the Sun, or any other bright Body apt to lighten or manifest the colours, and because colour cannot be seen without light, being nothing else (as the Philosophers teach) but the extream Superficies of a dark untransparent Body lightned, I hold it expedient for him that will prove exquisite in the use thereof, to be most diligent in searching out the effects of light, when it enlightneth colour, which who so doth seriously consider, shall express all those effects with an admirable Grace ; […].
Now when the Painter would imitate this blew thus lightned, he shall take his artificial blew colour, counterfeiting therewith the blew of the garment, but when he would express the light, wherewith the blew seems clearer, he must mix so much white with his blew, as he findeth light in that part of the garment, where the light striketh with greater force, considering afterwards the other part of the garment, where there is not so much light, and shall mingle less white with his blew proportionably, and so shall he proceed with the like discretion in all the other parts : and where the light falleth not so vehemently, but only by reflexion there he shall mix so much shadow with his blew, as shall seem sufficient to represent that light, loosing it self as it were by degrees, provided alwayes, that where the light is less darkned, there he place his shadow,
In which judicious expressing of the effects of light together with the colours, Raphael Urbine, Leonard Vincent, Antonius de Coreggio and Titian were most admirable, handling them with so great discretion and judgement, that their Pictures seemed rather natural, then artificial ; the reason whereof the vulgar Eye cannot conceive, notwithstanding these excellent Masters expressed their chiefest art therein, considering with themselves that the light falling upon the flesh caused these and such like effects, in which kind Titan excelled the rest, who as well to shew his great Skill therein, as to merit commendation, used to cozen and deceive Mens Eyes, […].
AGLIONBY, William, Painting Illustrated in Three Diallogues. Containing some Choice Observations upon the Art. Together with The Lives of the Most Eminent Painters From Cimabue, to the time of Raphael and Michael Angelo. With an Explanation of the Difficult Terms, London, John Gain, 1685.2 quotations
When a Painter has acquired any Excellency in Desinging, readily and strongly ; What has he to do next ?
That is not half his Work, for then he must begin to mannage his Colours, it being particularly by them, that he is to express the greatness of his Art. ’Tis they that give, as it were, Life and Soul to all that he does ; without them, his Lines will be but Lines that are flat, and without a Body, but the addition of Colours makes that appear round ; and as it were out of the Picture, which else would be plain and dull. ’Tis they that must deceive the Eye, to the degree, to make Flesh appear warm and soft, and to give an Air of Life, so as his Picture may seem almost to Breath and Move. [...] Friend,
Wherein particularly lies the Art of Colouring ?
Beside the Mixture of Colours, such as may answer the Painter’s Aim, it lies in a certain Contention, as I may call it, between the Light and the Shades, which by the means of Colours, are brought to Unite with each other ; and so to give that Roundness to the Figures, which the Italians call Relievo, and for which we have no other Name : In this, if the Shadows are too strong, the Piece is harsh and hard, if too weak, and there be too much Light, ’tis flat. I, for my part, should like a Colouring rather something Brown, but clear, than a bright gay one : But particularly, I think, that those fine Coral Lips, and Cherry Cheeks, are to be Banished, as being far from Flesh and Blood. ’Tis true, the Skins, or Complexions must vary, according to the Age and Sex of the Person ; An Old Woman requiring another Colouring than a fresh Young one.
There is a thing which the Italians call Morbidezza ; The meaning of which word, is to Express the Softness, and tender Liveliness of Flesh and Blood, so as the Eye may almost invite the Hand to touch and feel it, as if it were Alive ; and this is the hardest thing to Compass in the whole Art of Painting. And ‘tis in this particular, that Titian, Corregio, and amongst the more Modern, Rubens, and Vandike, do Excel.
I have heard, that in some Pictures of Raphael, the very Gloss of Damask, and the Softness of Velvet, with the Lustre of Gold, are so Expressed, that you would take them to be Real, and not Painted : Is not that as hard to do, as to imitate Flesh ?
No : Because those things are but the stil Life, whereas there is a Spirit in Flesh and Blood, which is hard to Represent. But a good Painter must know how to do those Things you mention, and many more : As for Example, He must know how to Imitate the Darkness of Night, the Brightness of Day, the Shining and Glittering of Armour ; the Greenness of Trees, the Dryness of Rocks. In a word, All Fruits, Flowers, Animals, Buildings, so as that they all appear Natural and Pleasing to the Eye.
SMITH, Marshall, The Art of Painting According to the Theory and Practise of the Best Italian, French, and Germane Masters. Treating of The Antiquity of Painting. The Reputation it allways had. The Characters of severall Masters. Proportion. Action and Passion. The Effects of Light. Perspective. Draught. Colouring. Ordonnance. Far more Compleat and Compendious then hath yet been publisht by any, Ancient or Modern. By M. S. Gent., London, The Vendüe, 1692.1 quotations
The Light falling on the Flesh of Young Women and Children causeth a Pleasant, Tender Shaddow without much Reflection ; but when on old hard and stiff Flesh, it remaineth more Harsh, the shaddows being harder : [...].
Flesh in Pictures to be seen at a common distance, and especially Portraits, should (generally speaking) be well wrought up, and then touch d upon every where in the Principal Lights, and Shadows, and to pronounce the Features ; and this more, or less, according to the Sex, Age, or Character of the Person, avoiding Narrow, or long continued Strokes, as in the Eye-lids, Mouth, &c. and too many Sharp ones : This being done by a Light Hand, Judiciously, gives a Spirit, and retains the Softness of Flesh.