Famous Inspiring Painting Quotes

Quotes can uplift us, inspire, and send is in a new direction with just a few simple words of wisdom. As an artist I often look to professional artists for tidbits of inspiration to help me get over a hump or work through a block.

These are a few of my favorite painting quotes from some of my favorite artists through the ages. Feel free to borrow these images to share. If you happen to post to Instagram, tag me on Insta at TinkerLab.


famous inspiring painting quotes

“Every canvas is a journey all its own.”

– Helen Frankenthaler

bob ross painting quote tinkerlab

“All you need to paint is a few tools, a little instruction, and a vision in your mind.” Bob Ross

hopper painting quote tinkerlab

“If you could say it in words, there would be no reason to paint.”  Edward Hopper

picasso painting quote tinkerlab

“Painting is just another way of keeping a diary” Pablo Picasso

sakai painting quote tinkerlab

“When you want to make the main color pure and bright, don’t just keep adding bright colors on it. Just make the colors around the spot darker and dull. It will give the scene dramatical effects. I think the life is the same.” Hiroko Sakai

van gogh painting quote tinkerlab“If you hear a voice within you say you cannot paint, then by all means paint and that voice will be silenced.”  Vincent Van Gogh

kahlo painting quote tinkerlab

“I don’t paint dreams or nightmares, I paint my own reality.” Frida Kahlo

da vinci painting quote tinkerlab

“The painter will produce pictures of little merit if he takes the works of others as his standard.”
― Leonardo da Vinci

famous inspiring painting quotes

A painting to me is primarily a verb, not a noun, an event first and only secondarily an image.

– Elaine de Kooning

famous inspiring painting quotes

“Some painters transform the sun into a yellow spot, others transform a yellow spot into the sun.”

– Pablo Picasso

famous inspiring painting quotes

“A painting requires a little mystery, some vagueness, and some fantasy. When you always make your meaning perfectly plain you end up boring people.”

– Edgar Degas

famous inspiring painting quotes

“I love to look at art, I love to look at paintings, and I almost feel like the experience isn’t complete until I’ve made something of my own.”

– Cecily Brown


  1. Hi” Art Activities, I Really enjoyed to read all quotes specially all quotes with beautiful images i appreciate for this beautiful post thanks again !

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  4. Beautiful article, I really enjoyed it. I once went to a Guggenheim exhibit where in a room there were exposed a series of horse halters hanging on the wall. They told me it was a famous creation, but onestly, I really don’t get the point on that kind of creations. I think I am quite traditional in defining what art is to me.

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  9. You can say – Wow, it’s beautiful, or, I love your style, or, what great detail, or, it gives me a good feeling, or, I like the warm colors, etc.. If you feel you must say something, look for something in the painting that you can mention in a positive way.

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    “Painting something that defies the law of the land is good. Painting something that defies the law of the land and the law of gravity at the same time is ideal.”

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  12. Painting is easy when you don’t know how, but very difficult when you do. A painting that is well composed is half finished. The painting has a life of its own. Cooking is like painting or writing a song. Pop Art looks out into the world. Painting is silent poetry, and poetry is painting that speaks.

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