A Treatise on Painting, by Leonardo da Vinci
Senex and Taylor, London
A Painter shou'd remark the Attitudes, and Motions of Men, springing immediately from some sudden accident; and fix them well in his Memory, or Sketch them slightly on the spot. This will be infinitely better, than to wait, till some Person, mimick; for instance, the Action of weeping, without any real occasion for Tears. For such an Action having no natural cause, the effect must of course be constrained, and unnatural. It will, however, be serviceable to you in the highest Degree, after having observ'd the Circumstances of some natural Action, to dispose a Model in the same Attitude: This will assist your Imagination, and you will be enabled to Paint from it, both with the greater Ease, and Spirit.