Despite the horrendous heat (102 today!), my zinnias continue to show their happy faces to the sun. When I am not in the studio with the little window AC cranked up, I'm enjoying rereading Asher B. Durand's Letters on Landscape, first published in 1855.
Here's a sample:
"Go first to Nature to learn to paint landscape...take pencil and paper, not the palette and brushes, and draw with scrupulous fidelity...I know you will regard this at first thought as an unnecessary restriction, and become impatient to use the brush, under the persuasion that you can with it make out your forms, and at the same time produce colour, and light and shade. In this you deceive yourself, as many others have done, till the evil has become irremediable; for slovenly and imperfect drawing finds but a miserable compensation in the evident efforts to disguise or atone for it, by the blandishments of color and effect..."