El Greco and the light

On a pleasant spring afternoon, a friend went to visit the painter El Greco. To his surprise, he found him in his atelier with all curtains drawn.

Greco was working on a painting which had the Virgin Mary as the central theme, using only a candle to illuminate the environment.

Surprised, the friend said: “I have always heard that painters like the sun in order to choose well the colours they will use. Why don’t you open the curtains?”

“Not now,” answered El Greco. “It would disturb the brilliant fire of inspiration that is burning in my soul and filling with light everything around me.”