“For a creative artist, the most frightening experience is the moment he first touches a blank white canvas”.
“The natural environment is the source of an artist’s inspiration: I walk in the forest and collect every weathered thing that attracts me – whimsical roots, crooked branches, the skulls of animals bleached white with time. Nature is a wonderful teacher: look at the butterfly – the balance of small and large spots on its wings; if there is a yellow spot on one part, two or three smaller spots occur on back to complete the pattern. What perfect harmony!”
“Painting a landscape is not the same as making a photograph. When I am surrounded by nature I am happy, and this same delight is felt by the viewer who experiences my pictures. My mood is contagious!”
“Compared to the life of a human being, nature seems eternal, unchanging – the same oaks and birches and fir trees, the sky, the grass. What does change is the attitude of the artist, based on where he lives. When I am in the country for a long time my eyes assimilate the landscape and eventually I take it for granted and I forget what thrilled me when first I arrived. But, when I return to the city, memory starts its work; it recreates the fields, the birches, the meadows. And those recollections are extremely alive and brisk.”
“Visual perception is not enough: all your senses should be engaged. Mastery of form and color is only the beginning – I know that I can’t paint when my ears do not hear. I need sound: the stirrings of leaves, the singing of birds. If there is a lark singing above my head, my sketch will reflect this.”
“When I paint a child who lives in the country, I will look at his house, how he responds to his natural surroundings, how he picks up a flower. Only after this long observation do I begin the work on canvas.”
~ Anatoliy Teleshov