It's about a king who was born in the year of the Dragon. and as he grew
up was very proud of that. For his birthdays people began giving him
dragons in all kinds of media: pottery, metals, wood, paper, pictures
etc. He loved dragons, loved hearing about them even after he grew up
Finally he gathered all the artists in his kingdom and said, "I know
the perfect dragon is like and I want a representation of it. It must be
exactly as I imagine it. Whoever can do this will get a great reward
fromme. - but if anyone who attempts this fails, I will have that person
executied at once."
Not surprisingly, not too many of them were enthused about this
commission. But finally one young artist stepped forward and agreed to
try. He asked the King many questions, about how the dragon looked, and
its stance and color and so on. But he said, it would take him a year
a day to do it.
That seemed reasonable to the King, who said,"Very well. I will wexpect
you to bring it to me exactly a year and a day no lather than this
The artist bowed and left.
Time passed, as it does, and the King was more and more excited about
finally being able to hold his perfect dragon the closer the day came.
last the day did cpome, amnd one hoour before the deadline, the artist
arrived carrying a folded easel and paintbox and a roll of canvas.
The king said, " I am very pleased to see you kept your word and came.
The royasl executioner is standing right over there. Now show me your
"I am glad to see your Majesty has not forgotten me. and that you look
well." said the artist with a bow. Then he set up his easel and began
asking the king again the details of how he imagined it while the artist
stretched his canvas amd set out his paints.
The King was growing very impatient. "You don't have my dragon. You are
going to lose your head."
"wait sire, said the artist. "I still have five miunutes remaining of
time we agreed that I would have."
Taking the brush in his hand, he swiftly painted the dragon, and stood
back so the King could see it.
The King (and the court including the executioner) looked at it.
"That's it. " cried the King in delight/ "That's my dragon! That's
exactly right. It's poerfect. But it only took you five minutes to paint
it . Why did you ask for a year."
"Because your Majesty" said the artist, "it took me a year to learn to
paint it in five minutes."
Does anyone else have a story about art/artists to share?