Sunday, October 12, 2008

The Secret of a Masterpiece

Quietly, reverently, expectantly his students follow the old master up the twisting path, nearly stumbling in the muted half-light of the pre-dawn. Now atop the precipice, the distant pounding of surf below them the only sound, young would-be painters sit motionless before blank canvass, waiting at the feet of the great artist.

A hint of pink, pale as a maiden's first blush. A student raises his brush and the old artist looks into his eyes and seems to say, "Not yet."

Silver and gold crawl around one cloud, then two then three. The master slowly shakes his head in silence and a student relaxes, while another fidgets nervously.

The first streak of red grows slowly from the curtain of pink. His students stiffen; surely we have come here for this. But the ancient one is still, seemingly unmoved by colors slowly stretching across the eastern sky.

Then, to the collective gasp of nature, rich shades of orange meet and mingle with vibrant flames of red. Adorned in purple, regal... crowned in pure gold, proud clouds ride chariots of finest silver across a blazing sky, and perfect shafts of saffron reveal the glory, the topaz-studded majesty of dawn... splashing their brilliant hues across the crystal sea.

"Now!" shouts the master artist. "Now!" With tear-filled eyes lifted in awe to the masterpiece before him, he implores those who would be artists, "Capture the color now!"


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