Suggested by Raymond (wordsummit). Took me awhile because I couldn’t come up with a joke or gimmick so I put it aside. But looking at it again recently I figured there’s nothing wrong with a straightforward illustration every now and again.
Note: For pretty much every Chinese idiom there is a whole bunch of related information (origin, variants…) that I am not able to provide here. You should be able to find something with these links. In particular, linguee is good for finding usage examples, which are important. (For instance, some idioms are used almost exclusively sarcastically.)
Perhaps also bear in mind that these illustratiofns are not necessarily authentic to the origin of the idioms. I sort of try to take that into account when I can, but it’s not a top priority and not even always possible due to changes in meanings. For instance, the above idiom started out as a nature description with no particular link to “truth revealed”. That’s totally the the reason I did not draw rocks in a river at night, and not because that would be more difficult.
Lastly, I just put spaces between each syllable in pinyin for these idioms, even though that’s not quite correct orthography. Someday I’ll do an extended rant about things that I find annoying about pinyin. (pīnyīn/pin1yin1/whatever)
Last panel by itself: