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
Whereas in every Work there is some one entire Figure, whereunto all the particulars of the whole History ought to be principally referred, the Painter ought not to imagine, […] that therefore he shall deserve commendation, but rather discredit, for it is most certain that Work will prove offensive, where some inferiour and by matter, is more curiously handled then the principal, and the rather, because the other Parts cannot chuse but loose their Grace. A thing which hath caused divers excellent Painters (as well new) as antient […] to leave their Works imperfect, which they could not remedy any other way, then by utterly defacing that which they had done, were it never so excellent.
A most pregnant example whereof we have in that antient Painter Euphzanor ; who being to draw the Twelve gods in Athens, he began with the Picture of Neptune, which he wrought so exquisitely both for proportion, colour, and all other points ; that purposing afterwards to make Jupiter with far greater perfection, he had so spent his conceit in the First Figure that he was not able afterwards to express any of other gods, much less Jupiter) the like Disgrace happened to Zeuxes by the Naturalness of his Grapes, and the Imperfection of the Boy, not unlike unto which was that of Leon: Vincent of late Dayes, who being to Paint Christ at his last Supper in the middst of his Disciples in the Refectory of St. Maria de Gratia in Milane, and having finished all the other Apostles, he represented the tow James’s with such perfection of Grace and Majesty, that endeavouring afterwards to express Christ, he was not able to perfect and accomplish that sacred Countenance, […]. Whence my Council is ; that for the avoiding of the like Errors, we examine the original thereof, having an especial regard to our proportions ; as the cheif Cause of the grossness, slenderness, clownishness, and daintyness of Bodies : whence all the Beauty and Ill-favourdness of Pictures proceedeth ; wherefore let each Body have his true and particular proportion […].