149 Beginning of the Artist’s Wise Words

    Soon enough, now that everyone was convinced that Yujia had enough skill, it was time for her to begin teaching.

    Yujia had a vague plan in mind. She would first talk about some principles of art to further solidify the false idea that she had extensive knowledge. She wouldn't really need to do this if she was a true, hard-working student of Lingxin Pavilion. But because she still hadn't studied the Six Principles- she planned to do this soon- she could only make up some things about painting that came from both her artistic experience and the things she learned in college.

    There was a definite difference between making up false philosophy that couldn't be proven wrong about her own art and making up things to teach other people. For one thing, teaching other people did require a certain amount of skill in the first place. Teaching people what was all made up nonsense meant that they wouldn't be able to create anything decent either, since everything was fabricated. Therefore, she had to weave in a lot more truth to her words.

    After talking about all the principles, Yujia planned to give them an opportunity to learn step-by-step how to paint something. This would introduce them to techniques that would, in the future, allow them to develop their own style if they were that interested in pursuing the arts.

    This plan, though simple, would hopefully take up the entire session today. Once her teaching time was over, she would hurry back to Lingxin and do some studying to prepare for any future meetings these girls might want her to come back for.

    "Alright," Yujia started, "Who knows the Six Principles of Painting? This is one of the most basic parts of painting that all beginners should familiarize themselves with before moving on too much."

    There were two possible actions that could occur after she asked this question. First, someone in this group would know the answer. Yujia would ask them to describe the six elements, and then, that person could educate everyone else and Yujia at the same time, all under the pretense of Yujia "testing their knowledge".

    If no one knew, it wasn't the end of the world either. Yujia could just tell them all to go and do this as research when they get home. She would proceed to talk about Spirit Resonance, the one principle she was confident about her knowledge of.

    Sima Qianzi ended up speaking up. "Because I was interested in learning about painting earlier, I did briefly study them. The six are Spirit Resonance, Bone Method, Correspondence to the Object, Sustainability to Type, Division and Planning, and Transmission by Copying."

    "Wonderful. Can you explain them?" Yujia prodded.

    "Of course. Spirit Resonance is the connection of energy throughout a work. It measures the amount of life within the piece. Bone Method refers to the technique of painting with the brush. Correspondence to the Object explains how lines come together to depict a form. Sustainability to Type involves the layering of colors. Division and Planning refer to composition. It also demonstrates how composition affects the depth of a painting. Lastly, Transmission by Copying is all about replication."

    Yujia took fast mental notes while Qianzi explained. She found that with Qianzi's voice being so soft and her explanation so precise and careful, it was easy to remember a few of the words she said.

    As if she knew about the Six Principles already, Yujia took the now-dried painting she created earlier. She pointed out a few of the brush strokes and areas of the painting. "I know that it may be difficult to memorize all these principles from just hearing or reading about them. To provide an example of how these six elements form a painting, let's take a look at this. With the Bone Method used on the mountains further in the back, you can see how it affects Division and Planning to create a sense of dimension. This is only one example- Bone Method always affects Correspondence to the Object just as much."

    The young ladies all nodded thoughtfully.

    "From this example, it is clear that all the Six Principles are intertwined," Yujia continued, "What I manage to do with Bone Method directly alters the other elements. And all together, the elements come together to create Spirit Resonance, the ultimate, most crucial factor within painting. That is why it's important to know every single one to be able to apply it to your paintings."

    Tianyu spoke up, asking, "So we have to memorize all of them?"

    "Yes. These are the basics to painting, so it's crucial to memorize them," Yujia answered.

    It was a little hypocritical to hear herself say these words. Still, Yujia assured herself by reminding herself that she was going to immediately study and memorize the Six Principles as soon as she returned to Lingxin.

    "For now, let's move on from the principles and get to some actual painting."

    Yujia looked around the pavilion, her eyes settling on the pond surrounding the pavilion. She walked to the direction of the edge of the pavilion, looking out to the pond. This would be a good thing to reference and paint for beginners.

    She waved her hand to gesture them to all come over. They walked over with curiosity in their eyes at what they were going to do next.

    "To get to practice one of the principles in action... er- Transmission by... Copying... let's spend a few minutes observing this pond. Use these observations to paint a picture in your head. We'll be practicing painting this pond as one of our first paintings," Yujia explained.

    Upon hearing this, Luowei smiled brightly. "This is wonderful. Feifei was just telling me about how they added new goldfish to the pond a few weeks ago. I was about to suggest that we go to admire them at the end of this gathering."

    Tianyu was the first to rush up to the side. "Look, Older Sister Jing Juan!" she shouted, pointing at a few of the fish that swam by. "That one looks almost gold in this light! And that one- look at the color!"

    Jing Juan, who walked over with Feifei, nodded with appreciation. "It's been a while since I saw goldfish with such splendid colors. The ones in my family's pond are all too bland."

    The rest of them all swarmed forward, pointing out various fishes as well as observing the entire pond carefully. Yujia looked on with amusement.

    Feifei, who had barely said anything up until now, finally spoke up, pointing at a swarm of fish that just passed by. She tugged at the sleeve of the girl next to her, calling attention to the scene in front of her. "Jing Juan- look over there. Isn't that swarm almost all gold? The colors are so pretty; they remind me of the imperial palace."

    "They really are!" Jing Juan's eyes widened with marvel, "Isn't it strange how that all the golden fish gathered together? It's almost like they're rays of sunlight swimming through the pond. And it really is like the imperial palace..."

    She stepped back, walking along the wooden rails of the pavilion along with the path that the fishes went. As she followed them, she noticed Luowei who was standing close by. "Older Sister Luowei, look at that- oh!"

    At her sudden gasp, Yujia looked over to see what would make Jing Juan, someone who appeared very composed and cool-headed at all times, to be suddenly surprised.

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    The sight that was in front of her was indeed startling. The goldfish all swarmed together to one central point, spiraling in concentric circles. They gathered and swam so fast that all their glittering golden scales blurred together to one gold spiral, like a spinning pool of liquid gold within the center of the pond. It was definitely odd compared to their usual behavior, creating a marvelous and breathtaking sight.

    This all happened right in front of Zhou Luowei. The entire group paused, all fixing their eyes on the incredible sight of pure golden goldfish circling round and round.

    Luowei took a step closer to the railing, but before she could get too close, Tianyu suddenly jumped out, leaping in front of Luowei, her two arms leaning against the wooden railings to get a closer look at the swirling fish.

    Then, a loud "


    sound echoed in the pavilion. The wooden railing that Tianyu leaned on snapped.

    And Rong Tianyu tipped over, falling into the water.
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