Pierre Auguste Renoir has always fascinated me since I took my first, serious oil painting class as a young girl. Later, studying art history in college, I learned that he never included black in his palette. Instead, he created his darker shadows out of deeper hues of blues and reds. I liked that he didn't take the easy way out, but instead he improved darkness with colors that appealed to him more.
Towards the end of his life, wracked with arthritic pain that crippled his hands, he continued to paint. When asked why he paints through such pain, he responded,
"The pain passes, but beauty endures."
A philosophy we should all live by.