Also finished The Forgery of Venus, a real painter's novel, I don't come across many of those.
Lots of info about Velazquez, too, such as: he was a social climber who was very interested in getting ahead at court; he only did 150 painting in his lifetime; his understanding of drawing was so thorough that often he began painting without preliminary drawings; and most interesting to me, his paint was very thin, even runny and lots of the linen showed through. This must be why you can't see brush strokes much. I looked at his dogs this weeks, there are many of them, and they are all done very simply without much detail and with very soft edges. And so I took what I could from that, it was helpful.