I believe in a lot of things: honesty, the beauty of nature, accountability, learning, and the uplifting effects of a good laugh. But mostly, I believe in art, for all of us. It can soothe us, make us think, maybe both at the same time. And it’s crucial that we all have access to it, to get its benefits when we need them.
News can be overwhelming, and I so admire everyone who stays on top of it, and speaks up for social justice. But I don’t want to amplify the news — I want respite from it. It can be a tough slog: we need more positive messages and optimism to counter it.
One way I try to do that for myself is through making art: my brain goes into a meditative, visual state that is refreshing and renewing. Recent studies said that making any kind of art, of any quality, is good for us. I’d like to think that looking at art can help in the same way, so I try to keep my art positive, optimistic, or at least contemplative. We should all have a safe space we can retreat to, even if it’s only in our head. That’s what horizons do for me — what helps you?
Thought Provoking Art
As we gaze at soothing images, or even art with a strong message, does it help us think? I believe art is better when you can return to it, contemplate, think about options, see it in a new way. Certainly social justice art does that directly, but so in its own way can a peaceful composition. It reminds us that there are other ways to look at life, that it’s good to have calming centers in our lives.
Easy Access to Art
If we’re to get all this thinking and restoring done, we all need to be able to find, and see art. Having art be restricted to galleries and big budgets isn’t helpful. That’s why I’m so thrilled about print-on-demand places like redbubble. These kinds of sites mean you get a choice, and a range of prices. Art belongs everywhere: on a mug or shower curtain, and yes, on your wall.
Making art and looking at art is so restorative for me: I encourage you to do the same, if it helps. Get messy with some paint, browse museum work or art fairs online, watch paint being mixed, or do anything else that connects you with a sense of peace this season. Let me know if it helps!